From Sharne Wolff…
A member of the Marathiel language group and Ngangikurrungurr clan from the Daly River south west of Darwin, artist Regina Wilson’s has been exhibiting her paintings for over a decade. With her husband Harold Wilson, the artist was a founding member of the Peppimenarti community of the Daly River region. A tiny community of less than 250 people, the Peppimenarti are well known for the unique qualities of their weaving. Their woven objects employ local materials (including pandanus fibres), natural dyes (derived from boiling the fibres in ash, berries or plants roots) and special coil and knotless weaving techniques not found elsewhere.
Taught by her parents and grandparents to weave, the same techniques are now being passed on to Wilson’s children and grandchildren. The significance for Wilson’s art is that her paintings translate these woven objects to the canvas. New Work hones in on the detail of subjects that include a range of circular woven sun mats, delicate syaw (fish nets) and a group of traditional message sticks. Using her intricate knowledge of weaving techniques and cultural knowledge, Wilson’s exquisitely detailed paintings are produced in a palette that reflects the history of the region, the woven object and the local environment. Wilson says she feels proud of her achievements in continuing the traditions of her clan. Although advocated by her in a less conspicuous and more elegant manner than some, there’s no mistaking the beautiful politics of this show.
Until October 31
Michael Reid Gallery, Elizabeth Bay
Pic: Regina Wilson Message stick, 2015, acrylic on linen,?100 x 100 cm. Courtesy the artist and Michael Reid Gallery.