According to the Aboriginal dreamtime story, a man was making a dilly bag (an aboriginal bag made out of string from the kurrajong tree). Suddenly he saw a group of men approaching him. These men were his enemies and wanted to kill him. The man was scared and in order to protect himself, he turned into a blue-tongued lizard called kurrih. The lizard then crawled inside this dilly bag to save itself from the enemies. When he did this, the hard string of the bag stuck on his back and his skin became hard. This was the reason that even today blue tongue lizards have harder skin than other reptiles.
M&S Textiles Australia is the largest manufacturer of Australian Aboriginal designs printed on good quality 100% cotton fabric. Aboriginal artworks are popular throughout the world and the only living ancient artworks. Its tradition goes back 50,000 years ago revealed by carbon dating of rock painting, cave painting etc. It is amazing that many of the artists do not have any formal education or training.
Aboriginal Culture is in existence for many thousands of years. Aborigines portray their ancient culture and spiritual significance by painting their bodies with designs and motifs. These motifs explain their family group, tribe, dreaming, totems etc. and vary by tribes and country (geographical location).
In the Aboriginal Culture, rituals and ceremonies are a constant source for everyone in the community to gather and celebrate the occasion. While doing so, the artists (dancers) paint their bodies with the theme of the ritual with various motifs and designs. There are strict regulations on how the artists are to paint their bodies based on their tribe and country. They generally paint the ritual designs on their bodies with clay, ochre, pink, red, yellow and white. Some of these rituals last for days. So, they use paints mixed with animal fats so that the paints stay longer.
Anna Pitjara is from Utopia region of Central Australia. She belongs to the Petyarre / Pitjara family and speaks Anmatyerre language. Her dreamings mainly involve Body Painting, Bush Yam, Yam Seeds, Sandhill etc
The Bush coconut or bloodwood apple, is an Australian bush tucker food, often eaten by Aborigines of Central Australia. The bush coconut is, in fact, a combination of plant and animal: an adult pores female scale insect, lives in a gall induced on a bloodwood eucalypt. It is in the size of an apple with a rough exterior, a small grub can be found inside after breaking the fruit open and is usually eaten. The white flesh is also eaten.
Audrey Martin Napanangka is a very good artist. She belongs to Yuendumu group of artists. She beautifully depicted the bush coconut plants in a decorative manner. The best time to look for bush onion around April/May to pickup. Audrey Martin Napanangka was born in Yuendumu where bush coconuts grow abundantly.
Dreamtime: Tanya Price has lived in Utopia all her life. She knows the area very well and many of the famous artists of Utopia are related to her. She grew up in Utopia with her family, friends, spinifex and other trees. There is an abundance of Dreamtime bush plum trees with yellow and red fruits. One cannot miss the waterholes guarded by wild floral plants. The colours of the floral plants are predominantly reddish and yellow.
Tanya Price is an excellent artist from Utopia, and M&S Textiles Australia printed some of her designs on fabrics. Quilters, apparel manufacturers and accessories manufacturers loved her designs. Tanya’s design on best quality 100% cotton fabric opens up a new door to patchwork and quilting enthusiasts, dresses and clothing manufacturers, fashion and home decorative and many more.
Tanya Price was born in 1972, in Alron, north of Alice Springs, NT. She now lives in Utopia.Tanya speaks both Anmatyerre and Alyawarra Aboriginal languages. She learnt painting from her parents and grandparents. Her Dreaming is Bush Tucker. Tanya uses fine dotting techniques as the background of her artworks. Her designs are precise, vibrant and attractive.
In Bush Food Dreaming, she presents a number of motifs in a clear and neat manner. She depicts a fan fair of foods like Oranges, Bush Plums, Bush Berries, Lemons etc. It is a corroboree where people are happily eating, dancing and discussing various social matters, enjoying their presence.
In Aboriginal language an equivalent of bush onion is Merne Yalke. It grows on creek bed. When the grass of the plant dried out, Aboriginal people dug up the bush onions from the soil. They clean the soils and husk it and eat it. If the bulb is white inside; it can be eaten raw or cooked. It is hard when it is raw but soft when it is cooked.
Jane Hudson is very good artist. She learnt painting from her mother. Her dreaming is fire dreaming, bush onion dreaming etc. Her works are neat, bold and colorful.
Dreamtime: In winter, after rains, new flowers become abundant. These become very decorative with bright yellow, pink and lavender colours. Wild bush onions have small bulb like onions, long slender green leaves, like thick blades of grass and have distinct onion smell. The bulbs offer a pungent onion flavour; however, the green tops are milder. These can be eaten raw and is considered an important food for Kimberly Aboriginal people. People gather bush onions by digging in the sand. The best time to gather bush onions is in April/May. Bush onions are also favourite food for native birds, known as Brolgas.
Jane is an experienced Aboriginal designer from the well-known Doolan family in Alice Springs, N.T. Jane skilfully drew bush onions (cyperus bulbosus) and wild flowers in separate garden beds in a beautiful way.
June Bird was born circa 1955 at Mulga Bore in Utopia. She is a talented Aboriginal artist. M&S Textiles Australia printed one of her earlier design called “Body Painting”. This design has been very popular to our customers.
An important part women’s role in traditional Aboriginal culture into collect (gather) bush foods like beans, apples, tomatoes, cherries etc. in wooden bowl called coolamon. Yams are also collected by digging into the soil with digging sticks.
June being an experienced designer drew skillfully the fallen bush plums on the ground walking paths all around for the collectors of Bush plums and other fruits. They eat the plums and make beautiful dough for tasty breads.
The Bush Plum is a vital food source for the Aboriginal people and is frequently featured in the Women’s dreaming stories. The fruits are harvested by shaking the trees until they fall to the ground but the fruits, although already quite sweet, need to be soaked in water to soften and plump them for eating.The Bush Plum tree flowers in Spring.
M&S Textiles Australia is the largest manufacturer of Australian Aboriginal
designs printed on good quality 100% cotton fabric. Aboriginal artworks are popular throughout the world and the only living ancient artworks.
Its tradition goes back 50,000 years ago revealed by carbon dating of rock painting, cave painting etc. It is amazing that many of the artists do not have any formal education or training.
Dreamtime: Spinifex in a species of grass that is found in wet areas usually on the coasts. The grass is native to Australia and grows about 30cm tall. The roots of spinifex grass are very strong and go quite deep into the earth. The edges of spinifex are sharp and can produce cuts if you grab them forcefully. If you live on the coast you may have seen spinifex grass before, it is the grass that sits on top of the sand dunes at the beach. Spinifex can also be found along the coast of other places like New Zealand and New Caledonia. Spinifex grass is important as it stops sand blowing away. The powerful roots keep the sand in place. Spinifex is often deliberately planted on the front dunes to stop the beaches from eroding (wearing away).
Bush food (referred to as bush tucker in Australia) traditionally refers to any food which is native to Australia and is used as sustenance by the original inhabitants, the Australian Aborigines. For thousands of years Aboriginal people survived living off the land, eating well when food was plentiful & conserving it in times of drought. This food is called bush tucker or bush food, and it’s Australia’s native food.
June Smith is a well-known artist in Santa Teresa, Alice Springs. She was born in 1960 in Alice Spring and she studied in Alice Springs. She is the first woman in Santa Teresa to paint on silk.