Kudditji Kngwarreye (1938 - 2017)

Kudditji Kngwarreye (1938 - 2017)


‘My country (Emu Dreaming)’


124.5 cm x 81 cm.


Acrylic on linen canvas


Provenance: Certificate of authenticity from art dealer, purchased directly from a dealer working with the artist.


    Kudditiji was an Anmatyerre elder and custodian of many important dreaming stories. He is one of the last of the older generation of Aboriginal masters and the brother of one of the most famous, the late Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

    He began painting his dreaming stories in the 1980s, using the typical dotting style and hieroglyths, but in the 1990s his work became more abstract. Kudditjii’s Country paintings depict an abstracted aerial view of the landscape and the songlines of the ‘Emu dreaming’ story.

    In the Dreamtime, Emu’s were sky birds that never touched the earth. Then, on one occasion a bird swooped close and saw that other native companions (Ancestral animals who lived with humans) were living on the land, singing and dancing.

    The Emus asked whether they could live on earth, but the companion told her that she couldn’t because her huge wings would get in the way – they would have to be cut off if she wanted to stay! The Emu agreed, but when she was wingless, the companion spread her own wings and flew off, laughing with her tribe. The nearby kookaburra also laughed at the trick, and when he remembers, still laughs to this day.