Dilly Bag & Manyi, 2002 bears artist's name and Mangkaja Arts Resource Agency catalogue number WP 034/02 on the reverse synthetic polymer paint on paper 76 x 56cm (29 15/16 x 22 1/16in).
PROVENANCE: Mangkaja Arts Resource Agency, Fitzroy Crossing, Western Australia Purchased from Raft Artspace, Darwin in June 2002 The Laverty Collection, Sydney
EXHIBITED: Imanarra - recent works on paper by Butcher Cherel, Raft Artspace, Darwin, cat. no. 4
JANANGOO BUTCHER CHEREL Janangoo Butcher Cherel is an artist whose work challenges categorization. Born of a Gooniyandi father and a Gija mother, he spent the early part of his life as a cattleman on Fossil Downs Station in the Kimberley. He commenced to paint in the early 1990s after Mangkaja Arts Resource Agency was established at Fitzroy Crossing. Ever resourceful and self-contained, Janangoo would sit in his corner studio of Mangkaja Arts and put in a full days' work, day after day. His experiences as a stockman and of the troubled history of the Kimberley provided Janangoo with a wealth of subject matter for his art, always represented in the context of the Ngarrangkarni (Dreaming) and the Law: he was an advocate for the retention of law and ceremony amongst younger generations and he used his art as a teaching mechanism. Janangoo taught not only the young Gooniyandi in his community at Muludja, but a world beyond. Janangoo's extensive range of imagery is drawn from observation of the minutia of the natural world to Gooniyandi cosmology, ceremony and its associated objects, and always situated in his ancestral lands. His sense of symmetry and composition, the delicacy of the touch of his brush and the fields of repeated motifs create a visual poetry that verges on the abstract; Janangoo '... reimagine[s] the world through nonfigurative means.' (Sprague, Q., Groundwork: Janangoo Butcher Cherel, Mick Jawalji, Rammey Ramsey, Melbourne: The Ian Potter Museum of Art, The University of Melbourne, 2011, p. 9).
Janangoo was proclaimed a Living Treasure by the government of Western Australia in 2004. Other than Groundwork in 2001, his work has been included in several other major exhibitions, including Images of Power; Aboriginal Art from the Kimberley at the National Gallery of Victoria in 1993, The Imanara Series/ Kerry Stokes Collection at the Art Gallery of Western Australia in 2000; the Clemenger Contemporary Art Award at the National Gallery of Victoria in 2006; Cross currents: focus on contemporary Australian art, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney in 2007; Breaking boundariescontemporary Indigenous Australian art from the collection, Gallery of Modern Art Queensland Art Gallery in 2008; and Ancestral Modern: Australian Aboriginal Art: Kaplan & Levi Collection, at the Seattle Art Museum in 2012.