• Seed dreaming
  • Seed dreaming
  • Seed dreaming
  • Seed dreaming

Molly Tasman (dec)

Seed dreaming

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    • Acrylic on Canvas
    • Dimensions: 40cm x 30cm
    • Cat No. 445-12

Molly Tasman, skin name Napurrurla, was born in the Tanami Desert. She experienced a traditional Warlpiri lifestyle as a child, spending time at Mount Doreen, Yarturlu Yarturlu, and Yurrampi, before her family was rounded up and trucked to newly created settlement of Lajamanu as part of the Government relocation program in the early 1950s. Napurrurla was passionate about Warlpiri culture and dedicated to preserving its knowledge for future generations. For many years, she taught bilingual education at the Lajamanu school. The dedication and perfectionism she displayed to her culture also shone through in her art, which became widely respected amongst her peers and art collectors. Painting as a means of preserving and expressing Warlpiri culture, Napurrurla discovered a sense of freedom in art that allowed her to more deeply explore her own sense of self. Reflecting on the desert landscapes and songlines that she extensively travelled by foot throughout her life, Napurrurla brought her Jukurrpa (Dreaming) to life when she painted on canvas, leaving a legacy to Warlpiri people. Napurrurla's art has been featured internationally and in exhibitions throughout Australia since 1992. She was a finalist in the 2008 and 2011 editions of the Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards (NATSIAA). This dreaming tells about the special seeds we use for grinding and making powder. The women add water to make a special damper. They put the damper in the coals for cooking. There are many different seeds we collect.

Lajamanu has a population of around 900 Warlpiri people. The older generation see Warnayaka as an avenue to achieve a number of needs that are present in their community. At the centre these elders still create their dot paintings. The most important thing expressed by members, is the need to preserve and pass on the cultural significance of Warlpiri, the culture of the people of Lajamanu, which encompasses not only art, but includes language, social structure, law and country. In doing so it is understood that excellence in art, prosperity from art sales, employment opportunities and preservation of pride in being Warlpiri will result. The art centre is a Warlpiri corporation and is staffed mainly by the children of the older generation of Indigenous Lajamanu residents who remember their first contact with white Australia. They maintain the computerised data base and run the art centre production. Older and younger community members produce Aboriginal dot paintings and make wooden artefacts. The centre is a place for a cup of tea and a song and dance, and then a trip into the Spinifex desert to look for goanna and lizards or to collect bush coconut, bush banana, yams and bush honey from native bees.

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