Anmanari Brown & Tjayangka Woods

Anmanari Brown & Tjayangka Woods

Tjayangka Woods, Kungkarrakalpa ( The Seven Sisters ) 2009 synthetic polymer paint on canvas 121.0 x 88.0 cm

Posted by Aboriginal Art Directory | 08.04.10

Gallery: Vivien Anderson Gallery
Dates: 14.04.10 : 15.05.10
Location: 470 Dandenong Road, CAULFIELD NORTH VICTORIA 3161

This exhibition marks Anmanari Brown and Tjayanka Woods’s first co solo exhibition in their intense painting careers, with a new body of work focussing on the Kungkarrakalpa, or Seven Sisters Tjukurpa.

Anmanari Brown and Tjayanka Woods are two of the four surviving pioneer women of the painting movement now known as the NPY and APY lands art movement, which sprang from the Pitjanjatjarra and Ngaanyatjarra lands on the tri state borders of WA, SA and the NT at the start of the millenium. The Pitjantjatjarra and Ngaanyatjarra people have always maintained a highly mobile existence, which can explain the late arrival of painting to the region. It was considered a “sit down” job, negating the opportunity to move freely and often throughout the region to perform ceremony, visit family, follow work opportunities or for sorry business.

The artists originally painted at Irrunytju Arts, which was established in 2001 by these and other Anangu (Aboriginal people of the region) women, as a place to paint, facilitate cultural development, intergenerational learning and as an economic initiative. It was 100% owned by the community and a member of the Desart network of art centres.

At the time, Irrunytju, a small very remote Aboriginal community outstation situated at the edge of the Gibson Desert in West Australia, had a population of around 150 people living in the cluster of Bessa brick buildings, corrugated iron sheds, dongas and wiltja (wind breaks made from twigs and grasses) serviced by basic infrastructure: a water-bore, generator, graded airstrip, community shop, office, tiny school, media centre and a few rambling dirt tracks. On the outskirts is a stony dirt football oval, a deserted chrysoprase mine, and a small graveyard. The surrounding harsh semi-arid country has a sparse beauty.

In stark contrast to the seemingly harsh surrounds, the artwork created at Irrunytju Arts from 2001 – 2006 was extraordinary. Most of the senior artists living and working at Irrunytju Arts belonged to the Pitjantjatjara language and cultural group. Straddling traditional and contemporary practices, many continued to practice cultural law and medicine, hunt and collect a range of bush foods. Reflecting the strong relationships between the artists, their country and culture, the artwork brought together contemporary painting techniques and media with ancient visual language and tjukurpa.

Anmanari and Tjayanka moved away from Irrunytju to Blackstone community situated about 55 minutes drive west of Irrunytju. Here the art centre Papulankutja thrives with the two old ladies acting as inspiration to the younger women in the community.

The entire NPY APY region is now serviced by 22 professionally run art centres. This rapid expansion is unheard of in the history of contemporary Aboriginal art. The artists, most very senior in years, paint with a calm that betrays the drama they create on the canvas, one of epic urgency and complete conviction.

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Contact Details

Gallery: Vivien Anderson Gallery
Contact: Vivien Anderson Gallery
Telephone: +61 3 9509 0255
Address: 470 Dandenong Road Caulfield North 3162 VIC

Gallery: Papulankutja Artists
Contact: Jane Avery
Telephone: +61 8 8956 7586
Address: Blackstone Art Centre Blackstone WA


Anmanari Brown & Tjayangka Woods

Anmanari BrownKungkarrakalpa ( The Seven Sisters) 2009 synthetic polymer paint on canvas 123.0 x 85.0 cm

Anmanari Brown & Tjayangka Woods

Anmanari Brown Kungkarrakalpa ( The Seven Sisters ) 2009 synthetic polymer paint on canvas 49.5 x 151.5 cm


Where is the exhibition?
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