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Emily Kame Kngwarreye

Arlatyite (Wild Yam) Dreaming - 1996

natural earth pigments on canvas
85 x 122 cm
Price Realised: $29,280.00

MP #646


Utopia Art (Central Land Council), NT Cat No. EKK9852
Private Collection, NSW


Cf. for other examples of Emily's ochre Paintingss executed at the same time, see 'Emily Kame Kngwarreye: The First Ochres', Lauraine Diggins Fine Art, Melbourne, Vic, March 1996

During 1996, the last year of Emily's life, Allan Glaetzer ran a nascent art centre in the Utopia community. Men and women, including Emily Kame and Mick Namarari, created works there. For many of them, the first experience of serious painting had been the making of boldly fluid marks on the greased-black skin of their extended family for ceremony. As a direct result of Glaetzer's efforts to influence Central and Eastern Desert painters back to using natural earth pigments as a medium, Emily produced a body of work in ochres depicting Pencil Yams (Arlatyte) and their flowers. An exhibition of these was held at Lauraine Diggins Fine Art in Melbourne the same year.

This painting was among Emily's first attempts at using natural ochres to depict her Arlatye Dreaming. Emily painted this work from an aerial perspective, as if tracing the tracks of the women, covered in ochre and representing their totem, dancing through the dust and sand across a ceremonial ground in a line illuminated by firelight.