Martumili Artists’ collaborative painting
Our country, 2011
Not available for acquisition.
Acrylic on canvas – 300 x 500 cm
Artists: Kumpaya Girgirba, Kathleen Sorensen, Judith Samson, Sonia Williams, Natasha Williams, Noreena Kadibil, Thelma Judson, Karnu–Nancy Taylor, Marjorie Yates and Noelene Girgirba.
Martumili Artists (official art centre), Newman, East Pilbara, WA.
Exhibited in Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre, 2011
Work on this painting commenced at Parnngurr Community in September 2011. The canvas was rolled out, Judith Samson under Kumpaya’s instruction painted the road and waterholes, mid way through the waterholes being put down Kumpaya jumped in and started painting with Judith, soon a large number of artists were involved.
The painting was worked on at Parnngurr on and off for two weeks and finally completed by Kumpaya and Kathleen after ten days of nonstop painting to complete the detail.
The painting obviously depicts the Canning Stock Route and the wells along it, more importantly it illustrates the artists intimate knowledge of their country, the importance of fire to manage county, the vast sand hills and underground water sources, the song lines , the Jukurrpa (Martu dreaming). The creation of this work provides an opportunity for young and old artists to work together, sharing knowledge and skills.
“There’s minyi puru (seven sisters) all through this painting, the seven sisters stopped all through this country, at all of the waterholes”.
“The Jina (feet) show where Martu walked in pujiman, all through the desert, we still walk through our country, now there are lots of Toyotas on the CSR, tourists, Martu and the Martu rangers working on the country to look after it”.
You can see the pattern waru (fire) makes on country and how much water there is in the desert, Martu know how to find this water, not just the water in CSR wells.
“Kunawarritji is the big waterhole; it’s my home, its lovely country”. (Kumpaya)