We're talking again about Papunya

17 AM 5558/08
Nellie Nangala Women's Ceremony 2007
Acrylic on linen
610 x 915mm

Nellie has painted two women performing a ceremony at Ipili. Aboriginal people believe the Creation or Dreamtime is the beginning of 'knowledge', when the laws of existence were put together. It is also the beginning of time when supernatural Ancestral beings were born out of their own eternity. It is said the Ancestors moved across the barren surface of the world, hunting and fighting. They changed the form of the land creating mountains, rivers, trees, plains, water holes and sand hills. The Ancestors were honoured by Aboriginal people in corroborees performed at sacred sites where the spirit of the Ancestors had become part of the landscape, or turned into entities such as rocks (central circles) or trees. At the corroborees the women (U shapes) dance and paint their breast, chest and forearms in ceremonial body designs. They also decorate their bosies with feathers and wear hair belts as depicted in this painting either side of the central circle. They may also dance with ceremonial objects such as nulla nullas (a fighting stick also used for ceremonial dancing).

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