Artwork Description

Acrylic on canvas

Signed on the back.

In this painting, Louise depicts the body paint that was painted on Aboriginal women during important ceremonies and rites of passage. Aboriginal women have their own ceremonies in which a series of song and dance cycles tell of the Ancestral Beings who walked the earth teaching women's law and ceremony to isolated groups living throughout the desert. Each tribe has its own set of women ancestors with different stories, designs, and dances, but most of the ceremonies have one theme common to all groups, that of food gathering as the most important part of women's lives.
The song and dance ceremonies mainly revolve around bush tucker, such as yam, banana, wild tomato, plum, onions, honey ants, witchetty grubs, nuts, and berries. In their paintings, they depict the implements they use, including digging sticks, grinding stones, and coolamons for carrying. The abstract figures they show are the same as those painted by men. For example, a 'U' shape represents a person or groups of people sitting down with crossed legs. A larger 'U' indicates a windbreak. Concentric circles can represent a campsite, stone, waterhole or fire. The exact imprint of human feet or animal paws depicts tracks of humans, emus, possums, kangaroos etc.

During the ceremonies, the women will paint their bodies and breasts in various designs which represent the particular ceremony being performed. Mostly these are curved or straight lines, including circles and squares.

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Medium

Acrylic on canvas

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Unframed (requires framing)

This artwork is unframed and requires framing.

#louisenumina, #aboriginal, #indigenous, #outback, #womensceremony, #dreaming, #pink, #white

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All art by Louise Numina

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