Skip to content


An image of Inspection day by Elaine Russell

Elaine Russell

(Australia 1941 – )

Language group
Kamilaroi, Northern Riverine region
Inspection day
Place of origin
New South WalesAustralia
Media category
Materials used
synthetic polymer paint on cardboard

73.5 x 99.9 cm sight; 94.8 x 120.8 x 2.1 cm frame

Signature & date
Signed and dated l.r. corner, white synthetic polymer paint "E. RUSSELL.94".
Purchased with funds provided by the Australian Collection Benefactors' Program 1995
Accession number
© Elaine Russell
Not on display
Further information

"Once a week the manager's wife would make her inspection of the houses on Murrin Bridge Mission to see if our mothers cleaned them or not, and while she was there would check to see if any children under school age had sores, lice, bad teeth, which were tested accordingly. I remember once that my younger sister and brother and myself got scabies. The manager's wife got the three of us and got our mother to soak us in disinfection in a copper boiler in the laundry (we had no bathroom) for about an hour. It seemed that long because we all looked like dried prunes all wrinkled from soaking us. After mum dried us we were plastered with sulphur ointment from head to foot. We turned from black to yellow from the ointment. Also we were under quarantine because the scabies were contagious. These were bitter memories for me, growing up on the mission."

Elaine Russell 1994

Bibliography (3)

Jonathan Jones, Tradition today: Indigenous art in Australia, 'Elaine Russell', pg. 128, Sydney, 2004, 128, 129 (colour illus.).

Belinda Oxley, Read-to-go Art Picture pack, Glebe, 2000, card no. 9 (colour illus.).

Cara Pinchbeck, Deutscher and Hackett fine art auction: Melbourne 29 August 2012, ‘Home: focus on the new Yiribana hang’, pg. 30-31, Melbourne, 2012, 31.

Exhibition history (3)

Country Culture Community (2008-09), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 12 Nov 2008–19 Apr 2009

Freedom Riders, University Art Gallery, University of Sydney, Camperdown, 01 Aug 2011–16 Oct 2011

Home: Aboriginal Art from NSW, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 09 Jun 2012–02 Dec 2012