In this painting Minnie depicts the traditional Body Painting used during women’s ceremony. The people of Utopia used body paint designs for corroborees or ceremonies, celebrating/depicting all aspects of traditional lore. Each clan has its own totem/Dreaming story an the body paint designs are usually the same for each depiction. Long ago, the paint was made up from earth coloured ochres and resins, charcoal and white ash from the campfire were also used. These days acrylic paint has replaced these natural pigments and the designs have become more colourful, still retaining the same basic shapes.
Utopia Station, Northern Territory
Minnie was born around 1910 near the cattle station of Utopia in Northern Territory. She belongs to the Anmatyerre and Alyawarr language groups. She is the mother of acclaimed artist Barbara Weir. Like many other Utopia women artists, Minnie participated in the batik project which was introduced to the community in 1977. Although painting started in the late 1980s in her community, Minn . . .