Aboriginal Gallery of Dreamings, Vic Cat. No 5717
Hank Ebes Collection, Vic
accompanied by a certificate booklet from Aboriginal Gallery of Dreamings and images of the artist with the artwork
Artwork Size: 141 x 88 cm
Frame Size: 91.5 x 144 cm
Clifford Possum began his artistic career in the 1950s at Glen Helen, when he found that he earned more pay and lived under better conditions while producing carvings for the developing tourist market than he had as a stockman. His carvings were renowned in Central Australia for their brilliant craftsmanship and realistic detail. He did not join the growing band of active painters working at Papunya until 1972.
His early paintings conveyed a remarkable sense of atmosphere. These stood out from those of other Western and Central Desert artists, who were less preoccupied with evoking a psychological mood in their paintings. As he developed his art practice, Clifford introduced Western iconography and figurative imagery to convey certain elements in his narratives. This played a dual role in both making them more intelligible to Western audiences and allowing him to create imaginative compositions within the parameters of the ‘law’.
In his work Clifford has painted an aspect of the Corkwood Dreaming songline that passes through Anmatjerre land near Napperby in the Tanami Desert region.
Corkwood trees are covered in a thick bark which allows them to survive severe fire and regenerate new sprouts from the trunk. It produces nectar when it is in flower and attracts many birds, particularly honey eaters, who favour the sweet and sticky substance.Share