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June Peters / Purnululu (18327)

100cm x 100cm Ochre on Canvas

SKU: 18327


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SKU: 18327 Category: Brand: . Artist:

June was born on Texas Downs Station in 1962. She lost both her mother and father at a very young age however the late Madigan Thomas (Senior ochre artist and Law Woman) and her husband Sandy Thomas, a Traditional Elder, brought her up and treated her like a daughter.

June currently lives in Kununurra, has eight children and 11 grandchildren and visits her relatives at Warmun frequently.

She was taught painting from an early age by the best of our famous first generation ochre artists, including Jack Britten, Madigan Thomas and Lena Nyadbi. These Elders devoted their lives to teaching youngsters culture, Traditional Dreamtime stories and ochre painting technique.

June is the niece of our most famous ochre artist, Rover Thomas. June’s mother was one of five sisters (Rita being Rover’s wife) and every one of these women, all from Texas Downs Station, have produced highly talented artists. June’s eldest daughter Deanne is following in her mother’s footsteps and is an accomplished artist.

June has an extended family, and through her mother, father, aunties and uncles, is able to paint the huge expanse of Kitja land, including Texas Downs, Purnululu and Doon Doon. This gives the artist a wonderful content for her works, and June is fastidious about the Kitja Dreaming Stories represented in her paintings. She travels extensively in her country, and paints with precision and authenticity.

June paints both in the typical Warmun style (thick bulked ochre), as well as fine, detailed works in minimal palette and on occasion, wonderful works using the acrylic medium. June’s work has been quickly noticed and purchased by astute collectors and included in exhibitions at Australian galleries such as Japingka Gallery in Perth and Harrison Galleries and Gallery Tjukurrpa in Sydney plus international galleries in France, The Netherlands and USA.

June has a promising future and her paintings now hang with the best of her famous relatives.

Purnululu (Bungle Bungles) is a very important part of Gija country. It is just to the east of Texas Downs Station, where my mother and lots of my family were born and worked. The mountains to the north are the biggest all around – the highest one is called Nyidbarryia (pronounced Nidburria). Our people always used that as a landmark as you can see it from a long way away. The early white people, particularly the stockmen on Hann Springs and Tickelara Stations, used the mountain for the same thing.

This is good country in this part – not dangerous like right down further south. The country around Nyidbarryia is called Eagle Dreaming – the eagles glide and swoop all around these big hills. There are deep rock holes in this place, kept full by underground springs.

Then you go down Chamberlain Gorge Way, the mountains are in the middle of Purnululu country. This part was the community for my Uncle (David Turner dcsd.) called Rija, or Kartang Rija in full language (Turner River Station). No-one living there now since old man passed away, but still all the houses and everything O.K. Uncle Jock Mosquito’s wife Doreen is old man’s daughter, so they might live there again one day. Lots of people want to see this community keep going, like my aunties (International Artists Phyllis Thomas and her sister Nora Nocketta Nagarra).

Then going down further you come to the Piccaninny Bungles – this is very different country made up of little hills all looking like ice-cream cones This is a very dangerous part of Purnululu in the Wet Time – the old people say the country “swallows you up” if you don’t know it well, because all the hills look the same. Many times the Kitja people have had to go out and bring people back who were lost in these little mountains. All this Purnululu is my uncle’s country (Jack Britten), on my mother’s side. He was boss for all of it.

The tourists all love this place called Purnululu – lots of people come from a long way to see this country. We are very lucky to live here.

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