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An image of Kangaroo and Shield People Dreaming at Lake Mackay by Timmy Payungka Tjapangati

Timmy Payungka Tjapangati

(Australia circa 1940 – 07 May 2000)

Language group
Pintupi, Western Desert region
Kangaroo and Shield People Dreaming at Lake Mackay
Place of origin
Central and Western DesertNorthern TerritoryAustralia
Cultural origin
Papunya Tula Movement
Media category
Materials used
synthetic polymer paint on canvas

187.0 x 155.0 x 3.5 cm stretcher

Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Gift of the Art Gallery Society of New South Wales 1995
Accession number
© Estate of Timmy Payungka Tjapangati. Licensed by Viscopy, Sydney.
Yiribana Gallery
Further information

This painting depicts two Dreamings and Tjapangati's own homeland along the fringes of Lake MacKay in Western Australia. These two, which are celebrated in a corroboree, are a Kangaroo Dreaming, utilised in the Tingari cycle, and the story of the travelling Kuditchi, or Shield People. The full details of the story are secret but the artist did say that in the Kudutchi corroboree the men sing while the women dance. The cat's-cradle-like pattern around the edge of the painting represents rain travelling from hill to hill. The tracks of the kangaroo travelling from site to site are self-evident. The large pale area in the central part of the picture represents Lake Mackay. The roundels in that area are trees which grow in the lake. The golden-coloured patches are sandhills. The connected roundels and adjoining straight lines represent both soakages and campsites of the mythical Shield People in their travels.

Australian Art Department, AGNSW, 2000

Bibliography (8)

Edmund Capon, Steven Miller, Tony Tuckson, James Scougall, Mollie Gowing, Harry Messel, Craig Brush, Ronald Fine, Alison Fine, Gordon Davies, Rosalind Davies, Christopher Hodges, Helen Eager, Rosemary Gow, Sandra Phillips, Daphne Wallace and Ken Watson, Gamarada, Sydney, 1996, 70.

Hetti Perkins, Education Kit - Papunya Tula: genesis and genius, 'Styles - iconographic and minimal', pg. 10-11, Sydney, 2000, 10 (colour illus.).

Vivien Johnson, Painted Dreams, 'Collecting Western Desert Art - a personal view', pg. 8-13, Sydney, 1995, 8, 16, 17 (colour illus.), 46. plate no. 2

Vivien Johnson and Tim Johnson, The Painted Dream, 1991, 20.

Vivien Johnson, Copyrites - Aboriginal Art in the Age of Reproductive Technologies, Sydney, 1996, 43 (colour illus.), 54.

Hetti Perkins and Hannah Fink (Editors), Papunya Tula: genesis and genius, Sydney, 2000, 86 (colour illus.), 286-287. no catalogue number

Hetti Perkins, Look: 1953-2003 celebrating 50 years, 'When the everyday becomes extraordinary: AGS help acceptance of young urban indigenous artists', pg. 51-53, Sydney, May 2003, 52, 53 (colour illus.).

Wayne Tunnicliffe and Deborah Edwards, Look, ‘New Australia’, pg. 24-27, Newtown, May 2012, 27.

Exhibition history (7)

Painted Dreams, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 1982–1982

Copyrites - Aboriginal Art in the Age of Reproductive Technology:

Gamarada, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 15 Nov 1996–16 Feb 1997

L'Art des Aborigènes d'Australie, Musée de Cambrai, France, 13 Sep 1998–23 Nov 1998

Papunya Tula: Genesis and Genius, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 18 Aug 2000–12 Nov 2000

Our spirits lie in the water, 15 Nov 2014–01 Nov 2015

Papunya Tula, Ala Mazzoniana Stazione Termini, Rome