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Eunice Napangardi

Bush Banana - 1990

synthetic polymer paint on canvas
129.0 x 140.0 cm
Price Realised: $4,600.00

MP #261


Field collected by former Police officer Ken Flood in Utopia, NT 1990
Private Collection, Vic


Accompanied by an image of the artist with the completed work.

Eunice Napangardi was born at Pikilyi in the early 1950s. She was introduced to painting in the early 1970s when her elder husband Kaapa Tjampitjinpa became the first of the men to use acrylic paint on board at Papunya. Ten years later, Eunice was one of the first women to transpose her traditional art onto canvas. Her paintings marked the entry of feminine colours; a naturalistic representation; and a certain liberty of expression, which was particularly noticeable in women's art of this early period. This painting is emblematic of her elegant style. Her finest early works are characterised by an unrestrained finesse of detail and a fresh panache of harmonious colour. 


This work expressing her cherished Uparli (Bush Banana) Dreaming exemplifies her innovative artistic ability at this very early stage of the development of women's art in the Western Desert at its purest and most personal. The plants grow in rock crevices close to dry river beds in Spinifex country. The area of the Dreaming is west of Yuendumu in the Tanami Desert. Eunice was a 45 year old Warlpiri woman when she created this work. She had married her second husband Maxie Tjampitjinpa from Papunya and spoke little English preferring to live a traditional lifestyle near a creek bed at Bond Springs, just north of Alice Springs.