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Kirsten Nangala Egan / Water Dreaming – Puyurru (3038-22) (Balance)
61cm x 46cm Acrylic on Canvas, balanceView more from artist
61cm x 46cm Acrylic on Canvas, balance
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Ochre / Kimberley artworks are shipped on canvas or linen, already stretched, ready to hang unless stated otherwise.
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Artwork is accompanied by Warlukurlangu Artists (Yuendumu) Art Centre Certificate of Authenticity/Provenance
Kirsten Nangala Egan was born on the 7 November 1989 in Yuendumu, a remote aboriginal community located 290 kms north-west of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory of Australia. She and her family lived in the bush in Wayililinypa, a distance of 45 kms from Yuendumu. She began her schooling at the local school, where her grandmother was an assistant teacher. When she was seven she was sent to “Our Lady of the Sacred Hearts College” in Alice Springs and after graduating from Traeger Campus she continued her education at Yirara College, an Aboriginal boarding college also in Alice Springs. When she finished school, she returned to Yuendumu where she tutored and read books with the “little ones” at school. She also worked at the local Centrelink until 2011 when she had a little boy Xavier, who is now 5 yrs old and going to school.
She was born into a family of artists in particular her mother Madeleine Napangardi Dixon and her grandmother Jeannie Nungarrayi Egan. Like her mother and her grandmother, she paints with Warlukurlangu Artists Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed art centre. She began painting in 2003 when she attended workshops during the school holidays and later, when she returned to Yuendumu, she painted on a regular basis. She paints her Father’s dreaming, Yankirri Jukurrpa (Emu Dreaming) and Warlukurlangu Jukurrpa (Fire Country Dreaming) which are often depicted in the one painting. She also paints her Mother’s Mina Mina Jukurrpa and Pampardu Jukurrpa (Flying Ant Dreaming) as well as her grandfather’s Ngapa Jukurrpa (Water Dreaming). These Dreamings relate directly to her land, its features and the plants and animals that inhabit it and are passed down to her by her parents and their parents before them for millennia.
Painting is important to Kirsten, “I like painting and I like the earthy colours. My Grandmother painted with earthy colours too. When I was very young I would watch my grandmother paint—I would also help her.”
The site depicted in this painting is Puyurru, west of Yuendumu. In the usually dry creek beds are ‘mulju’ (soakages), or naturally occurring wells. The ‘kirda’ (owners) for this site are Nangala / Nampijinpa women and Jangala / Jampijinpa men. Two Jangala men, rainmakers, sang the rain, unleashing a giant storm. The storm travelled across the country from the east to the west, initially travelling with a ‘pamapardu Jukurrpa’ (termite Dreaming) from Warntungurru to Warlura, a waterhole 8 miles east of Yuendumu. At Warlura, a gecko called Yumariyumari blew the storm on to Lapurrukurra and Wilpiri. Bolts of lightning shot out at Wirnpa (also called Mardinymardinypa) and at Kanaralji. At this point the Dreaming track also includes the ‘kurdukurdu mangkurdu Jukurrpa’ (children of the clouds Dreaming). The water Dreaming built hills at Ngamangama using baby clouds and also stuck long pointy clouds into the ground at Jukajuka, where they can still be seen today as rock formations.
The termite Dreaming eventually continued west to Nyirripi, a community approximately 160 km west of Yuendumu. The water Dreaming then travelled from the south over Mikanji, a watercourse with soakages northwest of Yuendumu. At Mikanji, the storm was picked up by a ‘kirrkarlanji’ (brown falcon) and taken farther north. At Puyurru, the falcon dug up a giant ‘warnayarra’ (rainbow serpent). The serpent carried water with it to create another large lake, Jillyiumpa, close to an outstation in this country. The ‘kirda’ (owners) of this story are Jangala men and Nangala women. After stopping at Puyurru, the water Dreaming travelled on through other locations including Yalyarilalku, Mikilyparnta, Katalpi, Lungkardajarra, Jirawarnpa, Kamira, Yurrunjuku, and Jikaya before moving on into Gurindji country to the north.
In contemporary Warlpiri paintings, traditional iconography is used to represent the ‘Jukurrpa’ (Dreaming). Short dashes are often used to represent ‘mangkurdu’ (cumulus & stratocumulus clouds), and longer, flowing lines represent ‘ngawarra’ (flood waters). Small circles are used to depict ‘mulju’ (soakages) and river bed.
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