Synthetic Polymer Paint on Belgian Linen
152 x 122 cm
Gallery Gondwana Fine Art, NT
Cooee Art Gallery, NSWExhibited
And They Danced Their Way Across Country, October 2018, Cooee Art PaddingtonStory
Mina Mina is a highly significant sacred site north west of Alice Springs, NT. Dorothy began creating works tracing the grid-like patterns of the salt encrustations on the Mina Mina clay pans in 1997. This marked a significant artistic shift in her work. Over the following three-year period her paintings became less and less contrived and increasingly spare, all detail pared back to the barest essentials. These new works, compelled the spectators eye to dance across the painted surface, just as these ancestral women danced in their hundreds across the country during the region's creation. As these works developed, Dorothy’s extraordinary spatial ability enabled her to create mimetic grids - lines of white dots tracing the travels of her female ancestors as they danced their way, in joyous exultation, through the saltpans, spinifex and sand hills clutching their digging sticks in their outstretched hands. Kathleen Petyarre has been quoted as saying 'those Walpiri ladies, they’re mad about dancing, they go round and round and round dancing, they’re always dancing' (cited in Napangardi 2002: 22). Little wonder then, that the surfaces of Dorothy’s canvases become dense rhythms of grids, as she mapped the paths of these dancing women.