Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Ever wanted to see Aboriginal Artists paint?

We've just returned from Alice Springs where, despite the heat of about 40 degrees celsius, we caught up with several Aboriginal painters.

Somehow the painters just don't feel the heat in the same way we do - might have something to do with the fact they have lived in this country for 40,000 years.

We borrowed a handy-cam and asked some of the painters if they would be ok if we made a short film of them painting.

Many painters agreed and as we edit each short film we'll upload them to the blog.

Personally I find watching the painters paint mesmerising and time passes very quickly. This is also a good chance to interact with the painters and ask them what their painting is about. Sometimes it's difficult to get a lot of information as the painters generally don't speak much english and our points of reference are so different.

This painting is a joint work by Joylene Reid Napangardi and Yinarupa Nangala.

Yinarupa is a senior western desert painter originally from a place called Mukula to the east of Western Australia. Joylene is the apprentice in this case. The story is passed from the elder to the junior.

In this painting Joylene and Yinarupa paint their traditional lands.

The painting features many rockholes - an important source of water in the desert - but Joylene and Yinarupa's ability to tell me where this is exactly is limited by my lack of knowledge of their Country. Just where the rockholes are - I will never know unless they take me there, and even then it might be a secret place where they don't want people who are not from their culture strolling about. There aren't too many street signs in the western desert.

Take a look at the film of Joylene Reid Napangardi painting which runs for about five minutes - keep in mind that the actual painting took about 5 days to complete.

Bye for now, Alesha.


Sophie said...

Pretty cool to see how a painting like that is put together. Very mesmerising - love the music.

Siobhan Dagge-Benham said...

What a lovely piece of footage. A gorgeous painting and such haunting and evocative music. Superb