Ex­hi­bi­tion pair­ing steeped in coun­try

Pilbara News - - Pilbara | News - Wil­liam Yeo­man

The stylis­tic di­ver­sity ev­i­dent in the work of the Yind­jibarndi artists from around the Pil­bara’s Mill­stream Table­lands is as strik­ing as the range of colours de­ployed.

It’s been a few years since I was last at the Yin­jaa-Barni (Yind­jibarndi for “stay­ing to­gether”) Art Cen­tre, which used to op­er­ate out of a shed be­hind the Pil­bara Abo­rig­i­nal Church in Roe­bourne be­fore mov­ing into the heritage-listed Dal­gety House on the town’s main road, Roe Street.

It was then I first en­coun­tered Yind­jibarndi el­der and artist Clifton Mack, work­ing in a sep­a­rate stu­dio from women artists such as Aileen Sandy, Maudie Jer­rold and Mar­lene Harold.

So it was with some de­light I dis­cov­ered Fre­man­tle’s Jap­ingka Gallery is host­ing Pil­bara Coun­try, an ex­hi­bi­tion of works by Yin­jaa-Barni artists, con­cur­rently with Rivers of the Desert, an ex­hi­bi­tion fea­tur­ing the paint­ings of Cen­tral Desert artist, Anna Pet­yarre.

Aileen Sandy started paint­ing in 2007.

“My par­ents had moved into town from Mt Florence Sta­tion in their an­ces­tral coun­try in the Table­lands, but they still worked at the sta­tion sea­son­ally and we would go back there for school hol­i­days some­times,” she says. Mar­lene Harold was born on Mt Florence Sta­tion in the Mill­stream Table­lands and started paint­ing in 2006 at Yin­jaa-Barni Art.

Ac­cord­ing to Jap­ingka Gallery’s sup­port­ing lit­er­a­ture, one of her chief sub­jects is the cre­ation story ac­cord­ing to Yind­jibarndi law, called Ngurru Nyu­jun­nggama — When the World Was Soft.

Clifton Mack doesn’t shy away from ex­plor­ing con­tem­po­rary tech­niques within a tra­di­tional con­text.

Both ex­hi­bi­tions con­tinue un­til June 30.

To view the works on­line, visit jap­ingkaa­bo­rig­i­nalart.com.

Pic­ture: WA News

Artist Aileen Sandy with her sis­ter Ellery Sandy and Clifton Mack.

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