My Grandmother's Story MB057062-Valorine Kngwarreye Morgan

Acrylic on Canvas
180 x 60cm
Year Painted


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My Grandmother's Story MB057062-Valorine Kngwarreye Morgan

Valorine has painted the Awelye (women's ceremonial body paint designs) for the ancestral dreamtime stories of the Anemangkerr (bush melon or tomato) which belong to her grandmother's country, Atnwengerrp, in the Utopia Region. Valorine's grandmother is the late Minnie Pwerle. Valorine inherited the permission to paint this design by her aunty, Betty Mpetyane (daughter of Minnie Pwerle).

The linear pattern of stripes and curves throughout Valorine's painting illustrates the Awelye. After smearing their bodies with animal fat, the women trace these designs onto their breasts, arms and thighs, singing as each woman takes her turn to be 'painted-up'. Their songs relate to the dreamtime stories of ancestral travel, dance and other totemic plants, animals and natural forces. Awelye demonstrates respect for the land. In performing these ceremonies they ensure well-being and happiness within their communities.

The concentric circles represent waterholes. The small circles throughout this painting depict the Anemangkerr.

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Located at
Mbantua Darwin Gallery (MGD)