George Ward Tjungurrayi
"The first people were created out of the Tingari Dreaming. They appeared out of smoke. When they arrived, they were already grown men with beards" - Benny Tjapaltjarri
An important Exhibition of powerful, new paintings by leading, senior Pintupi artists from the remote Gibson Desert/Lake MacKay region opens at Japingka Gallery on Friday, 15th October, 2004. These stunning paintings document and explore the legend of the ancient “Tingari Cycle”.
The mysterious “Tingari Cycle Dreaming” is a creation myth that refers to a group of ancestral elders who embarked upon periodic epic journeys through vast tracts of the Gibson/Western Deserts. As they traveled, they performed sacred and mystical rituals which opened up new land. The adventures of these Tingari groups are enshrined in numerous song and painting cycles which still inform the Pintupi people today.
With no written language, the songs and paintings of the Tingari Cycle form an integral part of the “passing down” of the ancient laws, Dreamings and Culture to the next generation of initiates known as the Punyunyu. The Pintupi were a nomadic people who wandered over incredible distances from west of Lake MacKay in Western Australia to just east of Kintore in the Northern Territory.
Their very survival depended upon their intimate knowledge of the land and the exact position of the next underground waterhole. The remarkable paintings of the Pintupi are in effect aerial-view landscapes sometimes on a scale that reflects the vastness of their Country. These paintings map not only the physical landscape, but also the spiritual element and how the two interact.
Indeed, the Pintupi lands are so remote that only as recently as 1984, a family group of nine Pintupi speakers walked out the desert into the small community at Kiwirrkura just inside the Western Australian border. These people had lived undetected and completely unaware of Western Culture. When they walked into the 20th Century, they brought with them intact Dreamings and lore that stretched back tens of thousands of years. Several paintings by members of this family group are featured in this unique exhibition.
This is a not-to-be-missed exhibition featuring highly collectable paintings by most of the leading Pintupi artists including George Ward Tjungurrayi, Thomas Tjapaltjarri, Ronnie Tjampanjimpa, Warlimpirrnga Tjapaltjarri and many more in this comprehensive survey of Pintupi Fine Art. Travels of the Tingari provides a rare opportunity to see first hand the powerful and inspiring paintings being created from the remote Western Desert region.
“Travels of the Tingari”
opens at 6.30pm on Friday the 15th October, and runs seven days a week until 20th November, 2004.
@ Japingka Gallery, 47 High Street, Fremantle
Gallery Hours are Mon - Fri: 10.00am 5.30pm. Sat: 10.00am–5.30pm Sun: 12.am–5.00pm.
Admission is free to the public.