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Artist: Betty Mbitjana
Title: Awele and Bush Melon
Language: Anmatyerre / Utopia NT
Medium: Acrylic on cotton canvas
Size: 101x44 cm
The painting refers to Betty's homeland of Atnwengerrp and the women's ceremonies that are performed. This can be seen with illustrations of U-shaped motifs and lines. The lines represent Awelye or the body paint designs which are painted onto the bodies of women during ceremonies. The large concentric circles represent the ceremonial sites. The small almost hidden circles refer to the bush melon fruit which once grew plentiful but nowadays is difficult to find. This story is almost hidden under a layer of criss-cross designs. The Aboriginal women gathered the fruit either to be eaten or dried.
Born in the 1950s and from the Utopia region in Central Australia, Betty is the daughter of famous artist Minnie Pwerle. Betty credits her mother with introducing her to the world of modern art. She observed Minnie learning to paint and as she became more well-known Betty decided to take up art. Through her art, Betty pays homage to her heritage, cultural knowledge and connection to her country. Her style is similar to that of her mother’s; however, Betty puts her own unique touch into the ancient and traditional stories depicted in her works.
CERTIFICATES OF AUTHENTICITY
Each painting includes a certificate of authenticity which comprises the artist's photo (with his/her permission)