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Connie Nakamarra Fisher / Women’s Dreaming (1A)

61cm x 46cm Acrylic on Canvas


SKU: 331-12


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SKU: 331-12 Category: Brand: . Artist:

Artwork is accompanied by Warlukurlangu Artists (Yuendumu) Art Centre Certificate of Authenticity/Provenance

Connie Nakamarra Fisher was born in 1954 at Mount Denison, a station 332 kms north-west of Alice Springs. When she was very young she moved to Yuendumu with her mother, father and siblings. Connie attended Yuendumu school, where she “sometimes [went to] school, [and] sometimes run away”. Connie was born to Maggie Napanangka White, a well-known Yuendumu artist who painted for Warlukurlangu Artists from 1986 to 1997 and Jack Left-Hand Warin Jabarula Jugulba. Her parents and her sister and brothers are “all gone” now.

Connie has been painting with Warlukurlangu Artists Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed art centre since 1987. She paints her Mother’s Karnta Jukurrpa (Women’s Dreaming) and Ngapa Jukurrpa (Water Dreaming) and her father’s Jardiwampa Jukurrpa (Snake Dreaming) and Lukarrara Jukurrpa (Desert Fringe-rush Seed Dreaming). “I like to paint with my Dad’s Dreaming . . . I’m entitled to paint my Dad’s stories.” These stories have been passed down through the generations for at least 50 millennia.

Connie was and still is very much part of the Yuendumu community. When she was younger she not only painted, but worked as a volunteer at the Childcare Centre, the only fully operational childcare centre in an Aboriginal community. During her free time, she use to enjoy digging bush potato but “I’m too old for that now”. She is married and has a boy and a girl from her first marriage and a step son from her second marriage. “I now have a lot of grandchildren”.

This painting depicts Nakamarra and Napurrurla women hunting for bush foods. The ‘kirda’ (owners) for this story are Nakamarra/Napurrurla women and Jakamarra/Jupurrurla men. Yumurrpa and Wapurtali are two major Dreaming sites owned by the Nakamarra/Jakamarra and Napurrurla/Jupurrurla subsections; these sites are also associated with bush food Dreamings. Yumurrpa is a major waterhole to the northwest of Yuendumu and a ‘yarla’ (bush potato) Dreaming site. The area north of Wapurtali/Yintaramurru (Mt. Singleton) is a ‘wanakiji’ (bush tomato) Dreaming site.

Warlpiri women hunt for a number of different bush foods at different times of the year. These include ‘ngarlkirdi’ (witchetty grubs), ‘yunkaranyi’ (honey ants), ‘jintiparnta’ and ‘purlantarri’ (desert truffle), ‘yuparli’ (bush bananas), ‘janmarda’ (bush onions), ‘pirlala’ (bush beans), ‘ngarlajiyi’ (bush carrots), ‘wayipi’ (small bush carrots), and ‘yakajirri’ (bush raisins). Women traditionally dug for these foods using wooden ‘karlangu’ (digging sticks). The end of the digging sticks were charred and ground on a stone surface to create a bevelled edge. Today many Warlpiri women use crowbars (also called ‘karlangu’) to dig for bush foods. Collected bush foods are traditionally carried in ‘parraja’ (coolamons), which can be carried with a strap made from the ‘ngalyipi’ (snake vine).

In Warlpiri paintings, traditional iconography is used to represent the Jukurrpa and other elements. Concentric circles are often used to represent the bush foods that the women have collected, while straight lines can be used to depict the ‘karlangu’ (digging sticks). Sinuous lines are often used to represent the ‘ngalyipi’ (snake vine).

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