Thursday, March 10, 2011

Yinjaa Barni on Aboriginal Art News

That's a phrase that's come into my life twice recently. 
Reviewing a mighty tome on the Burrup Peninsular's extraordinary petroglyphs, I was introduced to that phrase as the words of the Yaburara people who'd created that extraordinary ancient rock gallery used to describe their Dreaming. As the Yaburara are almost certainly extinct following 19th Century massacres, it had a sad resonance.
Now it turns up more cheerfully at the Chalk Horse Gallery in Sydney. There it's the translation of Ngurra Nyujunggamu, linking the Yaburara's still very extant neighbours, the Yindjibarndi back to a time whenMarrga spirits named and shaped the country, then its birds and animals, and finally the Yindjibarndi themselves – before disappearing into its rocky rivers and gullies.
So it's the title for the second Chalk Horse showing of paintings by the Yinjaa Barni artists of Roebourne on the edge of the Pilbara – a group that only came together to paint in 2006. In 2007, they started winning prizes at the local Cossack Art Awards, and the local Shire (with miner Rio Tinto's help) gave them a fine potential studio in a heritage-listed house. Involved in the reconstruction of that studio was Jasper Knight's father-in-law – and Jasper is an artist on the board of Chalk Horse....
Maudie Jerrold Yiliway (Rainbow)
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 140 x 88cm
Wendy Derby Red Dust
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 153 x 91 cm
Wendy Derby Country II
2010 76 x 122 cm Acrylic on Canvas
Marlene Harold Early Morning Mist
Acrylic on Canvas 2011 76 x 122 cm
Clifton Mack Jarman Island Sunset III
2011 Acrylic on Canvas 122.5 x 76 cm
Aileen Sandy Jiirda (Increasing Site)
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 140 x 80 cm
Clifton Mack Colours of the Rocks
2010 Acrylic on Canvas 170 x 65 cm

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