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© Shirley Purdie/ Licensed by Viscopy, 2017

Barramundi Dreaming

Date: before 1998
Sheet: 570 x 725 mm
Medium: Printing ink on handmade woven paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Copyright: © Shirley Purdie
Object Name: Screenprint
Object No: 00031655

User Terms

    A print by Shirley Purdie titled "Barramundi Dreaming".
    SignificanceThis print by Shirley Purdie is part of a series of works produced in the Warmun Art Centr that reflect current concerns of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities - these include access to fresh water through Land Rights, Sea Rights and the survival of indigenous cultures.

    HistoryShirley Purdie was born about 1948 under a tree on Mabel Downs Cattle Station. In 1968 Shirley moved to the Warmun Community where she lives today together with her children, several “Kangai” or grandchildren and ‘them other old people’. Shirley's mother, Madigan Thomas, was amoung the artists who established the Warmun Art Centre and Shirley learnt to paint from her and other elder artists such as Queenie McKenzie. She was encouraged to paint her Country and her stories and reaclls her uncle Jack Britten telling her: "Why don't you try yourself for painting, you might be all right".

    Shirley says: "it's good to learn from old people. They keep saying when you paint you can remember that country, just like to take a photo, but there's the Ngarranggarni (Dreaming) and everything. Good to put it in painting, your country, so kids can know and understand. When the old people die, young people can read the stories from the paintings. They can learn from the paintings and maybe they want to start painting too."

    In addition to her Country, Shirley is known for exploring the Catholicism she was exposed to in her history in 2007 she won the Blake Prize for religious painting for her painting, 'Stations Of The Cross'.

    Shirley Purdie is one of a group of artists working out of the Warmun Art Centre.
    The centre is owned and governed by the Gija people with 100% of income returning to the community and whose focus is to "support, maintain and promote Gija art, thought, language and culture."

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