Janet Long Nakamarra
Yawulyu/Body Paint Designs | 60h x 45w | RK652
Stretched - no frame | Acrylic on canvas
Janet Long Nakamarra was born at Anninie Station, north west of Alice Springs NT. After leaving school she assisted Elders in the production of books in Warlpiri while studying to be a teacher, the most important of these 'Warlpiri Women's Voices' was translated into English and Warlpiri.
Janet began painting her dreaming stories in 1989, and in 2003 after a period of Apprenticeship in 'Women's Law', the Elder Warlpiri women gave her the right to paint stories about their Ngapa (Water Dreaming).
Yawulyu is an artistic genre that combines songs, dances and designs enacted by women in Warlpiri communities across Central Australia. In these ceremonies, Warlpiri women use Body Paint Designs to pay homage to their ancestors by painting their upper bodies, arms and breasts with markings in ochre paste. The markings themselves symbolise the actions of the ancestors. Janet has a deep knowledge and understanding of language and she uses this to her advantage through her paintings. Like no other artist, Janet is able to translate her Dreaming stories onto canvas without losing any of the vital and sacred cultural knowledge. She is able to tell stories of the mythology of Warlpiri people in a way that anyone is able to understand and learn. Janet sees this as a way of teaching people about her culture.