Women's Ceremonies by Pantjiya Nungurrayi

Pantjiya Nungurrayi 'Women's Ceremonies' 91 x 41cm.jpg
Pantjiya Nungurrayi 'Women's Ceremonies' 91 x 41cm.jpg

Women's Ceremonies by Pantjiya Nungurrayi


Pantjiya Nungurrayi  c. 1936

Acrylic on canvas

91 x 41cm

©Pantjiya Nungurrayi, with permission from Paupunya Tula Artists Ltd

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Pantjiya Nungurrayi was born in the bush near Haasts Bluff circa 1936, prior to the mission being established. Her first contact with Europeans was as a young girl, when she and her family met with men who were travelling by camel and distributing rations. 

During the latter part of the seventies Pantjiya lived with her family between The Kungkiyunti Outstation west of Haasts Bluff, and Papunya, before settling in Kintore soon after the community was established in the early eighties. She is the widow of George Tjangala, who was also an artist and an early shareholder of Papunya Tula Artists.
Pantjiya has five sons and three daughters, one of her sons being Raymond Maxwell Tjampitjinpa, who also paints for the company.

This painting depicts  designs associated with Women's Ceremonies at the rockhole site of Kungkiyunti (Brown's Bore), west of Haasts Bluff.  The roundels depict the camp sites and rockholes and the 'U' shapes are the women.  The women later travelled west to Ngutjulnga, just to the east of Kintore, where they all perished from the cold as they were unable to get their fire sticks to light.  A small group of rounded rocks at this site is said to represent the women as they hunched their backs against the cold.  During their travels they gathered the edible berry kampurarrpa or bush raisin (Solanum centrale).

National Gallery of Victoria
Aboriginal Art Museum, The Netherlands