Kinyu, 2007 synthetic polymer paint on linen 180 x 120cm (70 7/8 x 47 1/4in).
PROVENANCE: Warlayirti Artists, Wirrimanu (Balgo Hills), Western Australia (cat. no. 880-07) Purchased from Raft Artspace, Darwin in September 2007 The Laverty Collection, Sydney
EXHIBITED: Paintings from Remote Communities: Indigenous Australian Art from the Laverty Collection, Sydney, Govett Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth, New Zealand, 15 December 2007 - 24 February 2008; Newcastle Region Art Gallery, Newcastle, 5 July - 31 August 2008
One of the major recurring themes in the latter part of her painting career is Kinyu, the ancestral Dingo. In the Dreaming Kinyu in the form of a man was attacked by intruders and defended himself by hurling sacred objects made of hair at them. These events occurred at a water soak called Midjul that Eubena would visit often to honour her ancestor. From about 2000, Eubena developed a series of architectural templates where lines of colours swirl and merge to meet along a central 'backbone' or prominent line as in Kinyu, 2007. The palette relies heavily on the reds and yellows she discovered in 1989 and that were to become a hallmark of much of her later work.
This painting is sold with accompanying Warlayirti Artists documentation.
EUBENA NAMPITJIN The doyen of the women painters at Balgo, Eubena Nampitjin lived through one of the major diasporas in modern Australian history. Born at Yalantjiri, her country runs along the Canning Stock Route that took Aboriginal people to mission stations and settlements far from their homelands and up into the Kimberley. With her first husband Gimme, she drove cattle from Kunawarritji (Well 33) to the railhead at Wiluna in the south, and to Billiliuna Station in the north. Eubena and Gimme and their family settled at Balgo about 1948. When her first husband died around 1979, Eubena married Wimmitji Tjapangarti, a maparn or traditional healer and a man of high ritual authority. Together they recorded ancestral narratives and ceremonies for the anthropologists Ronald and Catherine Berndt, and later went on to collaborate in paintings to become the most well known artistcouple from Balgo. Eubena had originally begun to paint in 1986 for the exhibition Art from the Great Sandy Desert at the Art Gallery of Western Australia, and she has been represented in several major exhibitions in Australia and abroad, including Images of Power: Aboriginal art of the Kimberley at the National Gallery of Victoria in 1993, ARATJARA, Art of the First Australians, at the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf, the Hayward Gallery, London, and the Louisiana Museum, Humlebaek, Denmark, in 199394, and Stories: Eleven Aboriginal Artists, Works from The Holmes à Court Collection at the Sprengel Museum in Hannover, Germany, in 1995. Eubena won the Open Painting section of the Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards in Darwin in 1998. In 2010, Eubena was a feature artist in the exhibition Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route, at the National Museum of Australia.