The Body, and Beyond

One more excerpt from Fred Myers’ Painting Culture: Myers highlights the distinctions between the paintings of the Pintupi tribe and the art from Balgo, just south of the Pintupi land: Pintupi culture valorizes some dimensions of painting–a painting’s truth in relation to the Dreaming, the right of expression as part of one’s identity–but gives no […]

Painting, in the Larger Context

In her essay, ‘Moorditj Marbarn (Strong Magic)’, Aboriginal artist Julie Dowling quotes Jean-Paul Sartre who described the role of painting as ‘the painter paints the world only so that free men may feel their freedom as they face it’. Her belief that painting is her means of cultural and personal survival provides an important perspective […]


Johnny Warangkula Tjupurrula I’ve been back from Australia for two weeks, but my intoxication with Aboriginal art continues unabated. My night dreams and daytime ponderings are populated with images and senses that are not of this hemisphere. For years I have studied Aboriginal art though reproductions. As is the case with any artist whose work […]