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SP8687

Alpar (Rat-Tail Plant) Story

Medium
Acrylic on Canvas
Size
30 x 30cm
Year Painted
2018
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SP8687

Alpar (Rat-Tail Plant) Story

Info

Catalogue Number:SP8687 ,Width: ,Height:

Info

Catalogue Number:
SP8687

Artist Profile

Maggie Bird Mpetyane Born: 1973 Language Group: Anmatyerre Country: Ilk…

Artist Profile

Maggie Bird Mpetyane

Born: 1973

Language Group: Anmatyerre

Country: Ilkawerne, Utopia Region, North East of Alice Springs

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas and Linen

Subjects: Alpar (Rat-tail plant) Seed Story, Awelye (Women's Ceremony and Body Paint Designs), Bush Foods

Maggie Bird is the eldest daughter of artist Paddy Bird (deceased) and Eileen Bird. Her grandmother is the late Ada Bird Petyarre, a highly respected senior artist from Utopia. Maggie has worked as a teacher's assistant at Akaye School for 7-9 year olds. She likes reading, math's and teaching the English language to the children. In her spare time she enjoys painting with her large extended family at Utopia, as well as hunting for sugar bags, honey ants, goanna and kangaroos.

Collections

Mbantua Gallery Permanent Collection, Alice Springs

Exhibitions

2002 Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: Art and Soul Gallery, Nashville TN; 'The Cove Gallery' Portland OR; Urban Wine Works, Portland OR; Mary's Woods, Portland OR
2003 'My Grandmother and Me', World Vision Walkabout Gallery, Sydney
2003 Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: New City Merchants, Knoxville TN; Art and Soul Gallery, Nashville TN; 'The Cove Gallery', Portland OR; Contemporary Aboriginal Art Event, Umpqua Bank, Portland OR; Mary's Woods, Portland OR; Art From The Dreamtime, Portland Art Museum, Portland OR
2004 Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: Portland, Nashville, Knoxville, Hartford, and Greenwich

Information

Artist Name, Artwork Size, Medium, Year Painted, Title, Free Shipping Worldwide!,

Information

Artist Name:
Maggie Bird Mpetyane
Artwork Size:
30 x 30cm
Medium:
Acrylic on Canvas
Year Painted:
2018
Title:
Alpar (Rat-Tail Plant) Story
Free Shipping Worldwide!:
This painting on canvas will be shipped in a cylinder to you free of charge, worldwide! An option to have this painting 'stretched' onto a wooden frame may be available. If selected, further charges will apply and will be calculated at checkout.

Description

Maggie paints the story of the rat-tail goosefoot or green crumbweed plant (Dysphania kAlpari). In Maggie's language it is called Alpar. This small, erect herb is sticky to touch and scented heavily of citrus. Growing especially well in Mulga tree communities, it is found in abundance in Maggie's home in the Utopia Region, north east of Alice Springs. It produces small clustered flowers that form long spikes, resembling that of a rat tail, as well as small black shiny seeds. These seeds are high in protein and low in fibre. Due to the sticky nature of this plant, the seeds are not shed as soon as they mature, making them available much later in the season than most other plants.

In the olden days, Maggie and the women of Ilkawerne would collect these seeds, sometimes soak them in water until swollen or cooked in hot coals, and then grind them into a powder that was used for making damper (bread). This practice is not as habitual now due to ready made bread, however the story is continually taught to the younger ones and ceremonies are carried out to ensure its productivity. The scented leaves of Alpar were also collected, soaked in water and used as a medicinal wash. Alternatively they would be ground into a powder and mixed with animal fats for use as an ointment, making this plant a very important food and medicinal source.

Fine dot work represents the dry seeds of Alpar. Linear patterns denote the Awelye (Women's Ceremonial Body Paint Designs) relating to the Alpar story. Women are represented by the 'U' motifs and they carry with them their digging sticks and coolamons (carved wooden bowls) which are typical instruments used for collecting many bush foods.

Located at
Mbantua Alice Gallery (MGA)

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