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Emily Kame Kngwarreye

Anooralya Yam Awelye - 1994

synthetic polymer paint on canvas
90.0 x 70.0 cm
Price Realised: $6,900.00

MP #162


Commissioned by Rodney Gooch for Utopia Art, NT
Cat No. EK21-893MBA
Private Collection, NSW

This paintings highlights the varied and changing hues in the life cycle of the Anooralya Yam and other food plants found near Alalgura on Utopia Station, west of Delmore Downs. From an aerial perspective, sporadic clustered growth appears after summer rain. Water slowly flows along the broad shallow watercourse and replenishes the soakage at Alalgura. The flourish of growth that follows is exceptional and rapid.


Reflected in this work is the Anooralya Yam, the most important plant in Emily’s custodianship. This hardy and fertile plant provides both a tuber vegetable and a seed bearing flower called Kame (Emily’s tribal name). Cracks in the earth’s surface indicate its presence underground.

Ceremony (Awelye) reinforces through narrative, the significance of this knowledge, in particular, it teaches survival, basic social codes and obligations.