Lot 8

Jilamara Design

Alison Puruntatameri 

120 x 80 cm
Ochre on canvas
Bid on this piece
About the Artist
Alison grew up in Pirlangimpi community on Melville Island. She went to the local school and worked in child care. She has one daughter, Anette Orsto (known locally as Sugar Plum). Sugar Plum is a great favourite at the art centre studio where Alison paints with her mother Paulina (Jedda). Alison and Paulina share caring for Sugar Plum while one or the other paints. It was Alison’s grandfather, Justin Puruntatameri (dec) a senior law man that knew all the songs and remembered visits by the Macassans as a boy that told Alison she should have a go at painting- she would listen to his stories of his paintings at the art centre and in the village. He used to take the family hunting when she was little. Alison started painting with Munupi Arts in late 2011.
About the Work

During ceremony on the Tiwi Islands a series of 'yoi' (dances), are performed; some are totemic (inherited from the person's Mother) and some serve to act out the narrative of newly composed songs.  Participants in these ceremonies are painted with turtiyanginari (the different natural ochre colours) in varying designs, transforming the dancers and, in some cases, providing protection against recognition by Mapurtiti (spirits).  These designs can be applied in different ways.  Ochre is applied to the body and face.  These significant artistic designs collectively are called 'Jilamara'.

©  Environmental Defenders Office NT. 

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