Selina Teece Pwerle's latest body of works depict her country, Antarrengeny, in remote Central Australia.
The works are influenced by the artists of Antarrengeny who paint the land rather than a Dreaming. And Selina is proud to paint the landscape and honour her country in this way.
Her country is where her Dreamings belong, a land that has provided for her people, and the land where she grew up. Ghost gums are plentiful and distinctive in the landscape, as are wattles, spinifex, Mulga trees, and termite mounds.
Sometimes Selina's landscape paintings are flush with colour; saturated with the hue of a thousand wild flowers, and other times explore the neutrals of the land; when water levels are low and temperatures soar.
Selina's skies attempt to mimic the magic of Central Australia's beauty, whether it is a searing mid-summer blue, a glowing indigo twilight or by casting the shadows of a magenta drenched dusk. That is, if acrylics could come close to revealing the sheer spectacle of a real-life Central Australian sunset.
Antarrengeny lies less than a thirty minute drive north of Utopia where Selina lives now with her husband and their two children, and she makes the short trip north to "see her family and hunt for goanna", she says.
This land has provided Selina's people with food, water, shelter and medicine, and when Selina was growing up living off the land was essential.
Born in 1977 Selina grew up when many Aboriginal men worked as stockmen on nearby cattle stations and Aboriginal women were employed as domestic hands in exchange for rations and clothing. Cultural rituals and ceremonies were strong. Selina's aunts would take her out on the land and teach her how to hunt and collect bush food. Anything caught or harvested was taken back to share.
Selina was brought into a world changing, and one where artistic ventures were stirring. In the same year as her birth, a series of government sponsored workshops were brought to the remote region of Utopia to teach the Aboriginal people the art of batik. Selina's mother, Lulu Teece Petyarre, was part of the Utopia Women's Batik Group which had established the following year.
Selina learnt to paint both by watching and with the careful instruction given by her mother and other women and this fueled her strong desire to pursue a creative career when she was older.
Since the sale of her first work, Selina's paintings have been varied in style. From fine dot work to strong, bold ceremonial designs to experimentation and trend setting with different brush patterns. Her My Country works prove she has great versatility as an artist and an intuitive sense of country innately expressed in her work.
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Deep into Central Australia’s remote Utopia region, there is a small community nestled in the bush where Dinny and Josie Kunoth live.
Several bright coloured buildings are home to the residents of this community which include a portion of Dinny and Josie's nine children and their families.
Gloria was a special 2020 exhibition showcasing the beautiful and quintessential Leaves paintings by Gloria Petyarre.
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