AWELYE, 1995

Important Aboriginal Works of Art
25 May 2016


(c. 1910 – 1996)
AWELYE, 1995

synthetic polymer paint on linen

122.0 x 216.0 cm

bears inscription verso: Delmore Gallery cat. 95I016

$80,000 – 120,000
Sold for $158,600 (inc. BP) in Auction 43 - 25 May 2016, Melbourne

Delmore Gallery, Alice Springs
Philip Bacon Galleries, Brisbane
Private collection, Queensland
Deutscher and Hackett, Melbourne, 18 May 2011, lot 27
Private collection, Hong Kong

Catalogue text

This important painting Awelye, 1995, by Emily Kngwarreye was painted six weeks after the iconic Big Yam hanging in the National Gallery of Victoria.

Line emerges fluidly, almost as an extension of Emily's physical self - a seemingly effortless transcription. Her hand, her baton, steers towards a cadenced resolve within the boundaries of the canvas.

The mood is frantic with abundance; the growth is dense, mirroring Emily's country after rain. Nature's rhythm is accelerated. With a relentless forging brush, the random structure of the Yam plant is captured, spreading quickly and 'all over' (Emily). Emily is tuned to the energy of her country and the yam 'strings' which link the maturing yams beneath the soil. This energy connects through her and her laying it upon the canvas - so vigorous, so vital, and so fundamental to Emily was the imperative to seek food in an arid land, and to celebrate its plenty after rain.