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Judy Mengil / Newry Station Country (1A)

60cm x 50cm Ochre on Canvas, 2016

SKU: 16415


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SKU: 16415 Category:

c. 1950 – 2017

Judy was born on Newry Station and grew up learning about station life. After Newry her mother and step father shifted to Carlton Hill station where her mother worked in the kitchen. Judy watched all the older women working as cooks and making breads. She also lived at Ivanhoe Station and Argyle Station. In 1965 her mother died and welfare shifted Judy and her sister to Beagle Bay Mission. She returned from the mission in 1971 and settled in Kununurra.

Judy has four children. She started painting in the mid 1990’s. She mostly painted the country around Binjin – Bucket Springs (Keep River National Park N.T.) which is her mother’s country and Milligan near Bullo River (Northern Territory) which is her father’s country. She painted these places to keep alive the stories and places of her parents so that she was able to pass knowledge to her children and grandchildren.

Judy passed away after a short illness in early 2017. A strong, proud Miriwoong Elder, she is a huge loss to both the art world and the Miriwoong people.


Selected Exhibitions

•    Heyson Prize, Adelaide
•    Warrgebarrenkoo, Fremantle Art Centre, Perth

•    East Kimberley Show, Short Street Gallery, Broome
•    20th Tesltra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award, Darwin

•    Waringarri -Three Women, Framed Gallery, Darwin
•    Introducing Waringarri Artists, Seva Frangos at Span Galleries, Melbourne

•    Judy Mengil & Phyllis Ningamarra, Mossenson Galleries, Collingwood

In this painting Judy depicts the country at Newry Station around Binjin Bucket Springs in the Keep River National Park near Kununurra.

“This is my mother’s country at Bijin – Bucket Springs near Keep River, Newry Station area. Moonoomoorem (The Keep River) flows through the centre of the painting. On either side are lots of billabongs good for fishing and hunting.”

I’ve painted that bush medicine and bush tucker that you find in my mother’s country at Newry Station (Bucket Springs – Binjin in language). There are lots of billabongs that come from the creek overflow especially in the wet season. I’ve painted those billabongs here. That’s where the bush tucker grows – sugarbag, gooseberry, bush plum, wattle seeds, all sorts in this one painting. Some of those seeds, that’s bush soap, you use the wattle seed and when it dries it goes black and you use it as soap and it goes all bubbly. When we go bush we use it in the billabong.

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