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Wild Plum

Artist: Eileen Mbitjana

Medium: Acrylic on linen

Dimensions:
H 150cm x W 90cm x D 1.8cm
H 59¼" x W 35½" x D ¾"

Eileen Mbitjana.
B. 1940

Eileen Mbitjana was born in 1940 and she grew up at Barrow Creek near Utopia Station in the Northern Territory.

She is the eldest child of the famous Utopian artists, Minnie Pwerle and her father, Motorcar Jim.

Her childhood was filled with the traditional teachings of her elders. Growing up Eileen remembers that they lived on goanna, aherre (kangaroo), ahakeye (bush plum), anatye (bush potato) and katyerre (bush tomato). There was no flour, and rations of tea and sugar were scarce. Her mother worked at the station, looking after nanny goats, milking them early in the morning, and she worked as a young girl, doing the dishes, for rations of tea, sugar, jam and tobacco.

Eileen's own interest in art developed later in her life, accompanied with a desire to learn a variety of techniques, including some non traditional ones, this has allowed her to develop a unique style of her own. In 2000, Mbitjana participated in a Certificate in Art and Craft course through the Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education, which enabled her to develop a new way of painting.

Eileen's paintings talk to us about her Bush Plum Dreaming, they are very intricate works in which the dense waves of dots create her vision of her own landscape. Eileen has not been influenced to great degree by her mother, but has developed her very special and unique style which is proving to be very popular. This is a wonderful example of her brilliant talent and skill.

Eileen's work is held in numerous private and public collections both within in Australia and beyond including the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne.

Item No: 1302


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