Naata Nungurayi: untitled

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Naata Nungurayi: untitled


Untitled polymer paint on linen painting by Naata Nungurayi.

Donated by Mr Chris Simon, Yanda Aboriginal Art, Alice Springs NT.

  • Polymer paint on linen 
  • 150 cm x 180 cm 
  • 2005  

Naata Nungurrayi’s canvas relates to a sacred waterhole located in the artist’s ngura or homeland west of Kiwirrkura WA. Nungurrayi is a senior elder with entitlement to interpret the Tjukurrpa, or Dreaming stories, associated with this site. Her painting deals with women’s ceremonies, activities connected with the collection of bush foods and women’s law expounded in Tingari song cycles.

Naata Nungurrayi’s painting is dominated by several large groupings of U-shaped lines, which refer to women. They are also associated with designs painted on women’s bodies during ceremonies. The story associated with this painting also addresses activity and movement as it is concerned with a large group of women who stopped at this site and gathered kampurapara, or desert raisins, a plant found throughout central Australia. The fruit can be eaten directly from the plant or ground into flour and baked in the hot coals to make bush damper. The loose black line work in Naata Nungurrayi’s painting is partially covered by the dense, vividly coloured dots which is a common stylistic feature in the work of Pintupi women artists. The heavily textured surface forms a shifting field of glowing colour encompassing strong saturated oranges and pale ochres linking back to the desert landscape.

From material supplied by Dr Lisa Chandler.

Wondervision Postcard 2

  1. What do the horseshoe shapes and myriad of small dots represent in this picture?
  2. What is the bush cherry used for?
  3. What are the colours of the desert landscape used here? 
  4. Research, using Google, the homelands of Naata Nungurayi.
  5. How many women are represented in this painting? Why do you think this?
  6. Draw a picture in this style of yourself sitting around a campfire with friends. How will you show males/females in the group? What colours will you use?
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