Artist : Kudditji Kngwarreye

Artist Profile

Artist : Kudditji Kngwarreye
Born : c. 1928
Region : Alhalkere

Kudditji Kngwarreye was born about 1928 at Alhalkere at Utopia Station, located about 270 kms north east of Alice Springs. His language is Eastern Anmatyerre. He is the younger brother of renowned artist Emily Kame Kngwarreye, and began painting in the early 1980's.


Kudditji, is a custodian for ceremonial sites located in his country at Utopia Station, and many of his paintings refer to sites at Boundary Bore, where men's initiation ceremonies are performed.


In his younger life, Kudditji had numerous jobs throughout the Central Desert, travelling widely and working as a stockman, and at other times working in mineral and gold mines.


Today Kudditji mainly paints Emu Dreaming, for which he is cultural custodian, and Men's Ceremonial Dreamings from Boundary Bore. Kudditji Kngwarreye is represented in major national and international collections and has gained worldwide recognition for his powerful interpretations of his ancestral Dreamings.


Like his famous older sister, the late great Emily Kngwarreye, Kudditji Kngwarreye has a deserved reputation as an innovator and as a consummate artist. As an Ammatyerre Elder and custodian of many important Dreamings, Kudditji Kngwarreye has been actively painting since 1986. This was several years before his older sister took up the brush and transformed the Indigenous Fine Art Movement.


Around eighteen years ago, Kudditji became aware of the emerging Desert Art Movement which had been initiated and encouraged by teacher, Geoffrey Bardon in the nearby Papunya Community and was inspired to record his unique Dreamings and Stories of his country on the more permanent medium of acrylic on canvas.


Kudditji's first paintings reflected his traditional upbringing and utilised the very fine dots and symbols indicative of the Men's ceremonies and Emu Dreamings from the Utopia region. His strong, traditional early work and distinctive style found immediate acceptance and recognition and was highly sought after.

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