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Julieann Pepperill / Bush Medicine Leaves (26B)

40cm x 40cm Acrylic on Canvas



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SKU: JA86 Category:

Julieann Pepperill was born in 1968 in Alice Springs and grew up in the tiny community of Ti Tree, 200km’s North of Alice Springs. She is an Anmatyerre woman. In the early 90’s Julieann and her husband Paul Janima-Purvis moved to the remote Stirling Station, 255km South of Tennant Creek where Paul worked as a stockman. They have one son.

Julieann is a member of one of the most renowned painting families in Australia. Through her marriage to Paul, her aunties include Kathleen and Gloria Petyarre, and great aunt Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

It was these relatives who taught Julieann to paint the Yam Dreaming story from the family’s country which she does so with stunning execution. Julieann depicts the leaves of the yam, paying homage to the spirit of this special plant in the hope that it will regenerate.


Julieann paints the Desert Yam (or Bush Plum) story from her family’s country. The yam grows underground with its viny shrub growing above ground up to one metre high. It is normally found on Spinifex sand plains and produces large flowers after summer rain. The yam tastes much like the common sweet potato. It can be eaten raw or cooked and is still a staple food for the desert aborigines where it can be harvested at any time of the year. It is also renowned for its medicinal properties. This medicine is used to heal cuts, wounds, bites, rashes and as an insect repellent. In this painting, Julieann depicts the leaves of the yam paying homage to the spirit of this special plant in the hope that it will regenerate.

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