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Est: $10,000 AUD - $15,000 AUD
Sotheby'sJuly 24, 2007Melbourne, Australia

Item Overview


Natural earth pigments on eucalyptus bark


53.5 by 26.5 cm

Artist or Maker


Painted at Kalumburu, north Western Australia
Aboriginal Arts and Crafts Limited
The Collectors Gallery, The Rocks, Sydney
Private collection, Sydney
Acquired by the vendor from the above


Manila Kutwit (Karedada), brother to artists Jack and Lewis Karedada was one of the more productive ?Wanjina? artists that emerged at Kalumburu in the mid-1970s.

Manila?s works, like those of Alec Mingelmanganu, are however more often imbued with an indivi8dual sense of character, not discernable in many of the Wanjina figures produced by other artists. This bust of a Wanjina on a small bark is a fine example of Manila?s ability to inject character into his paintings.

Rather than painting the eyes of the figure as solid, bounded elements, Manila?s use of four simple brush strokes imparts a sense of the wistful, even dolorous, to the Wanjina. Other Wanjina figures can be imposing, or challenging and others solid and stolid beings of monolithic stature. Here we have a Wanjina that looks out in a contemplative manner, as if carefully ruminating over what it sees before pronouncing judgement.

The rest of the figure is simply executed in a minimalist fashion, with the head and thoracic areas of almost equal proportions that suggests the transformation of Wanjina to a Boab tree. This may be a reference to an episode in the Wanalirri myth cycle, where a Wanjina being in a war against humans, transformed into a hollow boab tree that crushed all who sought shelter within it.

Sotheby's would like to thank Kim Akerman for this catalogue entry.

This painting is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity produced by Aboriginal Arts and Crafts Limited, North Sydney upon which the artist is not named

Auction Details

Important Aboriginal Art

July 24, 2007, 12:00 PM EST

926 High Street Armadale, Melbourne, ACT, 3143, AU