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Esther Haywood Petyarre / Bush Medicine Leaves (EH02)

SKU: EH02

95cm x 90cm Acrylic on Canvas

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Original price was: $1,550.00.Current price is: $1,250.00.

95cm x 90cm Acrylic on Canvas

In stock


How Artworks Are Sent

Ochre / Kimberley artworks are shipped on canvas or linen, already stretched, ready to hang unless stated otherwise.

Acrylic artworks are shipped on canvas or linen un-stretched, rolled up in a cardboard tube unless stated otherwise.

These artworks will need to be stretched around a wooden frame before hanging

This can be done by nearly any picture framer (highly recommended) or you can DIY if you’re confident in your handiwork.

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Artist Profile

Esther Haywood is part of the exciting next generation of Utopian artists who are using art as a means to uphold their commitment to traditional culture and knowledge. Born in 1982, Esther belongs to the Alyawarre language group and associates with her grandmothers country of Atnangkere in the Utopia region, approximately 230kms north east of Alice Springs.

As a child Esther was surrounded by celebrated Utopian artists who had led the way in depicting their ancient dreaming stories in a highly contemporary and expressive manner. Her aunties include the late Ada Bird Petyarre and Kathleen Petyarre and her cousin is Gracie Pwerle Morton.

Her grandmother, the late internationally acclaimed artist Gloria Petyarre, taught her the songs, dances and body paint designs to all the stories that belong to her Atnangkere country. In later years, Esther also cared for her grandmother and often collaborated with her on paintings.

Esther’s intimate knowledge of her culture and Country, as well as her considerable experience in painting with acrylics on canvas, has resulted in an extraordinary body of work for an artist who has only painted in her own right for a short number of years. Her sense of artistic authority has developed quickly and she is exciting everyone with the boldness and beauty of her paintings.

She carries on her grandmother’s bush medicine leaf style. Bush Medicine leaves are healing leaves of the Kurrajong tree used by women from the Utopia region in traditional bush medicines. Through painting, Esther pays homage to the spirit of the bush medicine leaves to ensure its regeneration, so her people can continue to benefit from its medicinal powers.

As an artist Esther has an incredible eye for detail and beautiful use of colour. Her works are radiant and dynamic. We look forward to seeing Esther develop on her incredible talent in the coming years.

Selected Exhibitions
– 2023 Leaves II, Utopia Lane Gallery, Melbourne
– 2022 Synergy 2022, First Nations Artists from around Australia, Everywhen Art, Shoreham VIC

Artwork Description

This beautiful artwork depicts leaves of the Kurrajong tree which is used for bush medicine. Bush Medicine is Australian Aboriginal people’s traditional practice. It was believed that evil spirits caused any illness without an obvious explanation and these would be treated by the tribe’s medicine man whom would specialise in spiritual cures.

Women from the Anmatyerre region gather the leaves to be used in traditional bush medicines. The leaves are boiled and mashed with animal fats (emu or kangaroo) making a medicinal poultice or paste which can last for many months. The paste is then applied to the skin to heal a multitude of afflictions such as bites, wounds, skin infections, rashes, skin cancer and the like. The leaves are also steeped in hot water to make an infusion, or healing tea. Gloria depicts the leaves of the tree homage to the spirit of this special plant in the hope that it will regenerate.

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Esther Haywood Petyarre / Bush Medicine Leaves (EH02)
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