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lot 25

Jessie Ross Ngwarraye (1961 - )
My Country
Acrylic on canvas - 61 x 61 cm Alyawarre
Group - Utopia - Central Desert

Provenance: Art Centre - Utopia

Jessie is the daughter of Lily Morton Kemarre and Banjo Petyarre, one of the guardians of the lands of Ampilatwatja. Here she describes medicinal plants and thus proves her attachment to this land and the knowledge she possesses.

This painting comes from the Northeast region of the Central Desert, the easternmost regions of the famous community of Utopia. The style of the artists of this region is very particular. They depict landscapes with thousands of small dots and varying perspectives, but all in a realistic way, whereas the aboriginal artists of the Desert generally paint in a very symbolic way. These artists thus show the knowledge of their environment and the relative abundance of a region qualified as desert (in fact semi-arid). Above all, they demonstrate their attachment to this land and to the sacred sites of which they are custodians; "I come from there," they would say.
The artists of Utopia often cover their canvases with tiny coloured dots (laid down with a twig or a skewer pick) that symbolize their Countries, the sites with which they have a spiritual link. This movement creates a resonance, a contemplative rhythm, a visual sensation that evokes celestial nebulae, vaporous clouds, or simply the desert after the rain and the fertility of the earth (to generalize we can say that it is the women who are in charge of carrying out the fertility ceremonies. Insiders most often use the term Awelye to designate the rites for which they are responsible). This variation in the rhythm of the dots reveals the structure of the landscape but also evokes the presence of the Ancestors and their actions.
More than a real landscape, it is necessary to see the traces of the Dream, the sacred dimension of the Aborigines.