Bush Plum



This painting depicts Bush Plum Dreaming, Bessie country (Atangker), located in the Utopia Region, some 250 km north east of Alice Springs. The wild bush plum (Santalum lanceolatum) fruits are small and black but they have important significance to Alyawarre women; they are highly nutritious and rich in vitamin C. During the summer time woman accompanied by children, collect the fruits and perform ceremonies - reinforcing their connection to the land. They also paint their bodies with Amwekety (bush plum) designs, sing and dance.

Bessie is one of the senior custodians for this Dreaming (Creation) . Her mother Poly Kngale is a famous artist. Bessie has depicted this story using a distinctive technique; she deeps the brush in different colors, blending the together across the canvas. The country is seen from a aerial perspective and portrays the seasonal changes of the plant in various stages of growth. Bessie's style, like her mother's is impressionistic and lyrical. Her works are represented in Australian and Overseas collections.