David Daymirringu Malangi (1927-1999) Gurrmirringu, The Great Ancestral Hunter, c.1960
Lot 1
David Daymirringu Malangi
(1927-1999)
Gurrmirringu, The Great Ancestral Hunter, c.1960
Sold for AU$ 3,660 (US$ 3,113) inc. premium

Lot Details
David Daymirringu Malangi (1927-1999)
Gurrmirringu, The Great Ancestral Hunter, c.1960
descriptive label attached verso
natural earth pigments on eucalyptus bark
79.0 x 48.0cm (31 1/8 x 18 7/8in).

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE
    The Collection of Dorothy Bennett, Darwin
    Lawsons, Sydney, April, 1988
    The Collection of Milton and Alma Roxanas, Sydney


    Malangi inherited the authority to paint the Gurrmirringu story from his father and it is the most prevalent theme in his ouevre. It tells of how death came to the Manharrngu people and the origins of the mortuary ceremony. The central episode occurs under a white berry tree (Wurrumbuku) where Gurrmirringu, the great hunter was resting by a waterhole. Whilst cooking his daily catch, Darrpa, the brown snake, appeared from the roots of the tree and with a venomous bite, killed him.

    In this rendition, Malangi depicts the hunter decorated with fine rarrk body paint, bent elbows and surrounded by his weapons as well as the yams and nuts collected whilst on his hunt. The fine white ochre stipling filling in the background represents the fruits of the white berry tree under which he sat. Though these elements are typically associated with the moment of burial itself, the deceased hunter's legs are usually outstretched. Here, one is bent and resting on the knee which may suggest it is the moment prior to his death. Malangi perfectly captures the imposing figure of the great hunter, with his large body and powerful limbs taking up the majority of the composition. The fine, vertical brushstrokes and the stippling filling the background of the work create a shimmering effect which was a typical technique used to convey the spiritual nature of an event or theme and clearly set it in an Ancestral realm.

    Cf. For a similar example see Gurrmirringu, the Great Ancestral Hunter, late 1960s, in S. Jenkins (ed.), No Ordinary Place: The Art of David Malangi, Canberra: National Gallery of Australia, 2004 pl.2, p.61; for a detailed description of the Gurrmirringu myth see L.A. Allen, Time Before Morning: Art and Myth of the Australian Aborigines, Rigby Australia, 1976, pp.180-185
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
22% on the Hammer Price

GST at the current rate of 10% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licences please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Francesca Cavazzini
    Specialist - Aboriginal Art
    Bonhams
    Work
    76 Paddington Street
    Sydney, Australia 2021
    Work +61 2 8412 2225
    FaxFax: +61 2 9475 4110
Similar Items