Born: c. 1980
Language Group: Anmatyerre
Country: Ankerrapw , Utopia Region, North East of Alice Springs
Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Subjects: Ntyemeny (Ruby Saltbush), Awelye (Women's Ceremony and Body Paint Designs), Country, Sand Hills, Bush Foods
Thelma has come from a strong family of artists. Mbantua Gallery has nurtured her and her sisters while painting since she first began in 1998. Her work reflects the unique style of her large extended family.
Thelma's artistic style is more commonly influenced by the designs of her Awelye (women's ceremony and body paint) for the stories belonging to her father's country, Ankerrapw. Thelma has developed a very fine dot style and loves to experiment with beautiful colours. She has also painted women's stories of collecting bush foods, which has always been an important role for women. One particular women's story that belongs to Thelma's country is Ntyemeny, the ruby saltbush.
The daughter of artist Elsie Dixon Penangke and senior man of Ankerrapw, Walter Dixon Pwerle, Thelma has four sisters (three of whom also paint), Elizabeth, Dianne, Maureen and Jilly, and one brother, Henry Dixon, also an artist for Mbantua Gallery.
Thelma gets all of her Dreaming stories from her father's country, Ankerrapw.
Mbantua Gallery Permanent Collection, Alice Springs
|2000||Mbantua Gallery, Alice Springs, NT, Australia|
|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||Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: New City Merchants, Knoxville, TN; Art and Soul Gallery, Nashville, TN; 'The Cove Gallery' Portland, OR; Mary's Woods, Portland, OR; Contemporary Aboriginal Art Event, Umpqua Bank, Portland, Oregon; Art from the Dreamtime, Portland Art Museum, Portland OR|
|2004||Mbantua Gallery USA exhibitions: Portland, Nashville, Knoxville and Hartford|
Thelma has painted beautiful fine dot work that represents Ntyemeny, known as the ruby saltbush (Enchylaena tomentosa). A soft greyish shrub with small flowers and bright red or yellow berries, the Ntyemeny is found in abundance around Alice Springs and through out Central Australia in every habitat. The Aboriginal people would eat the Ntyemeny berries when ripe and juicy or reconstitute the dried berries in water. This is not habitual though and is eaten mainly by the children.
Women, represented by the 'U' motifs, are shown collecting Ntyemeny. They carry with them their digging sticks and coolamons (carved wooden bowls) which are typical instruments used for collecting many bush foods.