The Art of Football Exhibition – MarnGrook


The Art of Football Exhibition – MarnGrook


After a very successful Art of Football exhibition held in Mildura and Berri last year, Citrus Bob Utber is at it again.


A second Art of Football exhibition is being curated by Citrus from August through to October to be held at art galleries in Geelong, Mildura and Waikerie. The focus this year will be on the MarnGrook the ball used by indigenous Australians over thousands of years to play the game.


“I am a believer like Martin Flanagan that the game of Aussie Rules originated from the local game. You only have to watch the skills of today’s indigenous players to see that they have something special,” said Bob.


He even has proof that the game was being played well before Anglo-Saxon people arrived. There is a print sketched on the banks of the Murray in 1857 that clearly shows young boys kicking a spherical object around.


Not that this is the be all and end all of the discussion but it will add to the exhibition if further proof is found in the interim period.



As part of the exhibition noted Indigenous artist Bernadette Atkinson will be making MarnGrooks for school children and interested adults at the Mildura Art Vault (13th September–2nd October).


Citrus is seeking interest from artists in all medium to enter the exhibition with their football art and especially those who would be interested in making the focus of their work “the original game”.


Artists interested in exhibiting should contact Citrus Bob on [email protected] or 0407 51 3357.


Marngrook – Roots of the AFL – Nathan Patterson (oil on canvas)



Indigenous artists from around Australia have been asked to submit along with other well-known artists of the genre.


Atkinson’s MarnGrooks are certain to attract a great deal of interest and going from the success of 2016 many sales should occur including works from The Footy Almanac.


Dates of the exhibitions:-

Metropolis Gallery Geelong – August 25th – September 10th

Mildura – September 13th – October 2nd

Waikerie – October 8th – October 31st



2 MarnGrooks – Bernadette Atkinson (2017)

About Bob Utber

At 80 years of age Citrus Bob is doing what he wanted to do as a 14 year-old living on the farm at Lang Lang. Talking, writing, watching sport. Now into his third book on sports history he lives in Mildura with his very considerate wife (Jenny ) and a groodle named "Chloe On Flinders". How good is that.


  1. bring back the torp says

    How accurate are Atkinson’s Marngrooks with those originally recorded by Europeans in Victoria that were used by Aboriginals?
    Their size, composition & weight?

    Any 19th century Marngrooks still in existence now?

  2. Heard your interview with Kelly Underwood today Bob, nice to hear your voice and match it to your face and words.
    Big challenge again this week but NO-ONE thought we’d beat Sydney so who knows?
    Go Cats

    Gee I’d love to come to the exhibition. My stepmum lives in Mildura but I’m snowed under with uni assignments at the moment. Maybe after the season/uni are over…

    All the best

  3. PS. Can’t believe I missed it while it was in Geelong!!
    Blame uni/work/footy/life!

  4. Fear not Marcus. For personal reasons I had to cancel the Geelong leg but this show will be alive and thriving in Cororooke next year. Keep June vacant.
    Mind you it is still open until October 2nd but like most Geelong supporters we will be celebrating amongst the rest of the kitty litter.

  5. Hello Bob, sorry about Geelong. Crows are the benchmark though I feel. Will win on Saturday by 4 or 5 goals. How is the show in Mildura going? Any news?

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