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Emily Kame Kngwarreye

Kame-Summer Awelye - 1992

synthetic polymer paint on Belgian linen
121.0 x 208.0 cm
Price Realised: $225,700.00

MP #573


DeImore Gallery, NT Cat No. 92A13
Gallery Gondwana, NT
Private Collection, NT
Lawson~Menzies, Aboriginal Fine Art, Sydney, Nov 2005, Lot No. 155
Private Collection, Vic


Cf. For stylistically similar works painted in the months prior to this see Emily Kngwarreye Paintings, Craftsman House, 1998 pp 68-73, Plates 20, 21 and 22 and during the following weeks pp 86-88 Plates 23 and 24.

Toward the end of 1991, women’s Awelye ceremonies were being held in Utopia and the surrounding region. Emily’s work became more expressionist, with the graphic under-layer of linear tracings and animal prints no longer evident. A number of exceptional paintings, including this particular work, were produced between November 1991 and February 1992. December was overwhelmingly humid with hot northerly winds. The anticipation of rain and the ongoing ceremonial activity enlivened the spiritual atmosphere. In this painting, which can be viewed horizontally or vertically, radiant fields of yellow and pink dots which cluster and trace across the surface vary in hue and density. They celebrate the successful life cycle of kame, the finger yam, with its daisy-like flowers which form seeds for making damper.


If any single artist could be said to be the standard bearer for contemporary Indigenous painting, Emily must surely be the one. It is impossible to dispute the fact that, at their best, the paintings of Emily Kame Kngwarreye place her in the highest league of international artists of her time.