Porcupine Moon Dreaming bears catalogue numbers MN S1-78 and PT30N411 on the reverse synthetic polymer paint and synthetic binder on composition board 62 x 46cm
PROVENANCE: Painted in Sydney during January 1978 Papunya Tula Artists, Alice Springs Private collection
LITERATURE: Geoffrey Bardon and James Bardon, Papunya, A Place Made After the Story: The Beginnings of the Western Desert Painting Movement, Melbourne: The Miegunyah Press, 2004, p.251, ptg.172 (illus.).
Porcupine Moon Dreaming was one of a series of paintings made by Namarari for the documentary film, Mick and the Moon, directed by Geoffrey Bardon, and written and produced by James Bardon, that was released in 1978. The film focuses on Namarari's struggle to accommodate the modern world through his art. Among the major paintings that feature in the film are Moon Dreaming, 1978, and Rising sun chasing the night away, 1977-78, both in the collection of the National Gallery of Australia. These paintings are illustrated in Bardon and Bardon 2004, painting numbers 169 and 170, pp.248-9 respectively; and in Cubillo, F. and W. Caruana (eds.), Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art: Collection highlights, Canberra: National Gallery of Australia, 2010, pp.40-2.
Porcupine Moon Dreaming depicts the tracks of ancestral Porcupine or Echidna spirit beings travelling from all points of the compass to meet at a waterhole at 'Mintjirrybiy' where they perform ceremonies in the light of the full moon. The waterhole is located east of Namarari's birthplace of Marnpi. In the painting, the outer orange circle of the central roundel represents the moon. The innermost concentric circles figure the waterhole which is surrounded by an orange oval of sand. Beyond this the five sections of parallel lines represent mulga trees at the site, and the dotting the bush foods that attract porcupines.