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Linda Syddick Napaltjarri / Witchdoctor & Windmill Dreaming (LN18428)

SKU: LN18428

127cm x 150cm Acrylic on Linen, 2005

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$8,500.00

127cm x 150cm Acrylic on Linen, 2005

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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.

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Artist Profile

c. 1937 – 2021

Linda Syddick Napaltjarri was born in the area of Wilkinkarra (Lake Mackay). Her mother was Wanala Nangala and her father was Rintja Tjungurrayi. She was part of the last generation of Pintupi people who grew up in a completely traditional life and experienced first contact with European Australia.

Linda’s paintings are inspired by both her traditional nomadic life in the desert, and the Dreaming of her father and stepfather. Linda’s father was Rintje Tjungurrayi who was killed by a revenge spearing party in accordance with customary Law when Linda was about eighteen months old. Her stepfather, artist Lungkarta Shorty Tjungurrayi, subsequently brought her up.

Before Lungkarta died in 1985, he instructed Linda to carry on his work and paint his Dreaming. And so it was that in 1986 her two Uncles Uta Uta Tjangala and Nosepeg Tjupurrula taught Linda the art of painting.

Linda painted Country mostly around Lake Mackay, which has been central to the cultural and spiritual life of the Pintupi people for thousands of years. People used to camp around its shores during their seasonal journeys and gather there for ceremonies. Lake Mackay was where Linda was born and traveled for most of her early childhood. It is a large dry salt lake, which straddles the WA-NT border, northwest of Kintore.

Linda’s works are quirky and highly collectable. They are not only fine artworks with superb composition, line, texture and movement, but also idiosyncratic representations of the artist’s remarkable stories and experiences. She was a unique voice and sadly missed.

Artwork Description

The WitchDoctor and the Windmill is a story that Linda Syddick Napaltjarri loved to paint. It documents the first contact some of her family group had with European settlement, when, in 1945, they walked out of their Pintupi homelands near Lake MacKay in the Gibson Desert, Western Australia, heading east for Haasts Bluff Mission. Linda was eight years old at the time and the 350 kilometres they travelled was largely over rugged sandhill terrain.

As they were walking along, on of their group, the Nangkari, a highly respected medicine man and healer, and his two wives, had lagged behind a little as they approached Mt Liebig. The Nangkari, an elderly man by then, lay down and had a sleep, not seeing the windmill before he closed his eyes. His wives, however, saw it whirring around, and not knowing what it was, took off into the bush screaming.

Upon waking, the Nangkari, who had had no experience of white people, also saw the windmill with its vanes flailing in the wind and making a mighty roaring noise. He took it to be the evil spirit, Mamu. To protect his people, he started throwing spears at it, but they just bounced back. He then used his magic powers and produced stones from his body to throw at it, but they, too, failed to stop it.

Finally, noticing that the Nangkari and his wives weren’t among the group, Linda’s step-father, Shorty Langkata Tjungurrayi, the owner of many Dreaming stories and also a magic man, walked back to find the missing trio. Shorty already had experience of white settlement and knew that windmills were machines that drew water up from the ground. He managed to convince the Nangkari that it wasn’t the Devil Devil but that it was a device that provided good water. The Nangkari, eventually pacified, drank some of the water, and satisfied that it was good, was happy, and the family group travelled on.

Linda has painted certain elements of this story, showing the Windmill, the Old Nangkari man and the nearby family groups camped out (using traditional symbols). All around these motifs are the Sandhills of the desert.

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Linda Syddick Napaltjarri / Witchdoctor & Windmill Dreaming (LN18428)
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Gail Walls

Amazing. .wonderful paintings…love the stories told with each..beautiful works by all..look forward each day to see what is next to come…a big thank you to all for your beautiful pieces

Alli Lou

If there was an option to, I’d give a 100 star rating

Gheorghe Taralunga – Craiova

C EST MAGNIFIQUES CETTES OEUVRE !!!!!!!!!!

Katherine Chandler Ferguson – Fitzroy Crossing

I’ve not been able to visit for a while but love the work here! I think I’m due a trip with the boys soon!

Greg Ambrose-Pearce – Darwin

Seamless purchase great people to deal with would love to buy more!

Sue Candy

Just exquisite work, the detail, the colour and the stories. I’m in love with Artlandish Art!

Raye Stratford

Loving how Kirstie finds brilliant artists and shares not only the artwork, but the back story of both the piece AND the artist. You can tell she absolutely loves Aboriginal art, and she has such great rapport with the artists.

Mark Carroll – London

Best place to buy genuine, quality art from. On my 10th purchase and counting.

Hayley Beaver – London

Beautiful art work….. Love it!

Due to continued global shipping pressure & record number of online purchases, we recommend ordering by November 20th for international orders and December 12th for Australian orders for best chance of delivery by December 25th. Thank you.

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