The rhythmic linear dotting in this work represents the tali (sandhills) of the area surrounding Waran. This significant site sits within Minyawe Miller’sngurra(home Country).
Miller travelled vast stretches of Martu Country with his family duringpujiman(traditional, bush dwelling) times. They traversed the expansive sandhill country between water sources, hunting and gathering bush foods along the way. Rock holes, soaks, springs and waterholes were of vital importance to Martu people in thepujimanera; knowledge of their whereabouts being essential to survival. Specific sites were visited according to the wet or dry seasons and the availability of resources.
In this work, Miller’s use of negative space evokes the long, sharp shadows that announce the days end in the desert. Miller’s restricted colour palette and sparing dot work conjures what could as easily be a starry night sky as a series of shifting sandhills, glinting in the dying light.
About One of Twelve
One of Twelve is an Australian organisation that showcases the work of emerging and established artists from the Asia Pacific region. We are dedicated to celebrating and contributing to the art sector of this region through the production of high quality, silk garments that depict collaborating artists work. These unique pieces are each accompanied by an artist card, detailing the maker’s work and practice.
About the artist
Born in thepujiman(traditional, desert dwelling) days, Martu man Minyawe Miller grew up travelling across the Country around Punmu with his family. As a young man, Miller walked across great stretches of this Country carrying only histajitaji(smouldering stick) andjurna(hunting stick). Travelling between water sources, Miller and his family hunted and collected bush foods such aswarmula(bush tomatoes), emu andmarlu(kangaroo) as they went.
Hearing of otherpujimanpeople settling in missions and communities across the Eastern Pilbara, Miller and his family walked in to Jigalong mission. Here, Miller met his wife Nancy Chapman, also an artist. An excellent horseman, Miller worked for many years on pastoral stations across the Pilbara, breaking horses and building roads by hand. Miller now lives in Punmu with his wife and extended family.
Miller is a formidable painter, his work recognisable by his decisive use of line and colour. Contorted squares are a recurrent symbol in Miller’s work, representing the waterholes and soakages he walked between as a young man in pujiman times. Other works feature luminescent tracks of dots that seem to pulsate, transporting the viewer across the shimmeringtali(sandhills) of the Western Desert.
100% Silk Satin with cotton padding and silk lining.