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Emily Kame Kngwarreye

Untitled (Anooralya Yam) - 1994

synthetic polymer paint on Belgian linen
121 x 91 cm
Price Realised: $14,640.00

MP #495


Delmore Gallery, NT Cat No. 94G015
Corporate Collection, Vic

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). The visual evidence of maturing species is no cause for alarm in terms of survival, for the yam tuber can always be found where cracks in the earth’s surface indicate its presence underground.

Such application of red and yellow colours 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 we see sporadic clustered growth after summer rain. We also look on this exciting work as a water catchment area. The rain falls and water slowly flows along the broad shallow watercourse and replenishes the soakage at Alalgura. The flourish of growth that follows is exceptional and rapid.

Ceremony reinforces, through narrative, the significance of this knowledge, by teaching survival skills and knowledge, basic social codes and obligations.