Photo by Rick Wells "My Father's Country" by Kathleen Nanima Rambler from "Desert Awakening" exhibit at Booker-Lowe Gallery
This is the story of a small group of women who, in the face of adversity, found a way to overcome professional hurdles to continue their creative pursuits. The current exhibit at Booker•Lowe Gallery, Desert Awakening: Paintings by the Australian Aboriginal Women of Ampilatwatja, focuses on the small community of Ampilatwatja near Alice Springs in the Northern Territory.
In order to depict a particular set of motifs, ancestral figures or icons, an Aboriginal artist must first ask permission from a relevant member of the community. Recently the community experienced societal problems and all painting stopped. After a period of time, a small group of women decided that they could begin painting again, as long as they didn't paint the dreamtime stories, thus avoiding the need for permission.