BETTY MBITJANA "Bush Melon - Awelye" Signed Acrylic on Canvas 200cm x 125cm

Regular price $1,750.00


BETTY MBITJANA (Circa 1945 - Utopia)
Hand Signed, Original Acrylic On Canvas

Title: Bush Melon - Awelye
Image Size: 200cm x 125cm (Can be hung Vertically or Horizontally)
Condition: Excellent

Unstretched as easier for Shipping due to size.

Comes with Certificate of Authenticity from Martinez Art Dealer.

You can also come view this work and many others in our Surry Hills Gallery in Sydney. Please message me to arrange a time to view in person.

Serafin Martinez
Principal, Martinez Art Dealer
Surry Hills, Sydney, Australia
ABN 36 561 407 649


Betty Mbitjana is the daughter of renowned artist Minne Pwerle and the sister of artist Barbara Weir.

Betty's Awelye paintings depict the designs that the women would paint on their bodies, and the dancing tracks which are made in the sand during women's Awelye ceremony. Through their Awelye ceremonies, women pay homage to their ancestors, show respect for their country and dance out their collective maternal role within their community.

A design based on these dancing tracks is painted on women's bodies before a ceremony is performed, and this same design can be seen today in Betty's works on canvas and in the works of her mother, sisters, and aunts. Ochre, charcoal and ash are all used to paint designs on the women's upper bodies, and Pwerle women paint their chests, breasts and upper arms for Awelye in ochre, red and white. The designs they use have been passed down for many generations, and only the Pwerle or Kemarre owners can paint them.

The paintings are aerial views of women's ceremonies and depict the waterholes (often in sacred places) where they take place. Much of the work is taken up with pairs of striped breasts moving forward as the woman dances, giving a great sense of movement to the work. Occasionally there will be patterns of the seeds and the bush plums the women eat at the ceremony.

Betty’s paintings are recognized for their vibrant color and dynamic composition.