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This work portrays an area known intimately to the artist, painted here in from memory. During the pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) era one’s survival depended on their intimate knowledge of the location of resources; thus physical elements of Country, such as sources of kapi (water), tali (sandhills), and different varieties of warta (trees, vegetation) were carefully observed and remembered. Today, this relationship with Country remains equally strong, despite the movement of Martu out of the desert and into remote Aboriginal Communities, towns and cities.

Also visible may be traces of life cycles based around kalyu (rain, water) and waru (fire). A thousands of year old practice, fire burning continues to be carried out as both an aid for hunting and a means of land management today. As the Martu travelled and hunted they would burn tracts of land, ensuring plant and animal biodiversity and reducing the risk of unmanageable, spontaneous bush fires. The patchwork nature of regrowth is visible in many landscape works, with each of the five distinctive phases of fire burning visually described with respect to the cycle of burning and regrowth.  

Finally, metaphysical information relating to a location may also be recorded; jukurrpa (dreaming) narratives chronicle the creation of physical landmarks, and can be referenced through depictions of ceremonial sites, songlines, and markers left in the land. 

Name: Carol Williams

Language: Putijarra

Community: Parnngurr


Carol grew up in Jigalong and Wiluna before moving to Parnngurr Community when she was 13 or 14. Her schooling was at Carolundi mission, the same place her mother Noreena went to school. "I’ve been watching Mum paint for a couple of years now and I want to show my talents to my daughter and nephews. I’d like my daughter to be a painter like me. I really like it, its good fun. I like to let other people know its fun to paint."

© the artist / art centre