This exhibition features 26 significant paintings by Minnie Pwerle (pronounced purla) representing the artist's oeuvre from her earliest works painted in 1999 at a DACOU workshop in Adelaide conducted by her grandson, Fred Torres, to her final works in 2006. Minnie's linear paintings revealed an artistic authority reminiscent of the late Emily Kame Kngwarreye (c.1910-1996), in terms of visual boldness, vibrancy and expressionist mode.
Sadly, Minnie passed away in 2006, yet by 2009 she had become the most searched for Aboriginal artist on the internet and today she continues to be in the top 5 collectable Aboriginal artists. Her paintings hold a significant place in the contemporary Australian art world. Large national and international audiences identified her work with a modern sensibility and with not being recognizably Australian Indigenous art. It is the contemporary nature of Minnie's paintings that was so exciting to these audiences. Her work was seen as stylistically fresh and her powerful brushstrokes intrigued many.
The power of Minnie's paintings is in the bold, expressive simplicity of her linear style, which depicts Awelye Atnwengerrp, traditional women's ceremonies held in her country of Atnwengerrp. Her mesmerizing lines and circles convey breast designs and dance tracks around camp fires, whilst the smaller tighter circles often seen in her work represent bush melon seeds. Her canvasses sing with Indigenous wisdom and contemporary verve. This is an exhibition not to be missed as it documents an important chapter in Australian Indigenous art in the dawning of the new millennium.
Minnie Pwerle was born circa 1922 and died 18th March 2006, her country was Atnwengerrp and her language was Alyawarre. Her Dreaming was Bush Melon.
Minnie Pwerle’s emergence and dominance in the world of mainstream art has been compared to the legendary Emily Kame Kngwarreye, who like Minnie, began her painting career in her mid seventies and continued to paint with an energy that belied her age. Minnie Pwerle also possessed incredible energy, and this was often reflected in her depiction of Awelye Atnwengerrp. These works were created in a linear style sometimes loose and free flowing or tight and clustered or a combination of both. Either way, Minnie Pwerle’s ability to capture her long love of the land was always true.
Minnie Pwerle exhibited her works extensively throughout Australia and the world with great success. She is regarded as one of Utopia’s foremost artists and this late artist's paintings are in continual demand from both galleries and the private sector.
Minnie was the mother of Barbara Weir and the grandmother of Fred Torres, owner of DACOU. For the first four years of her painting career, Minnie painted exclusively for DACOU. This unique and important family connection means that DACOU Aboriginal Gallery is priveledged to have a superb range of Minnie's paintings available.
DACOU highly recommends the inclusion of a Minnie Pwerle painting to any small or large collection.
Be sure to check out the "Woven Image" Minnie Pwerle collection, depicting Minnies' artwork on a range of commercial upholsteries, panels and wallcoverings.
Click here to visit the collection on the Woven image website.