REGION: MT SWAN, UTOPIA
Josie Petrick Kemarre was born c. 1953 at Santa Teresa Mission and began painting in the 1990’s. Depicting traditional womens stories of gather bush tucker and the beauty of her homelands, Josie has excelled within her artistic interpretation and representation of Aboriginal life and culture.
She has always lived a semi-traditional lifestyle, spending her early years foraging – searching for ‘bush foods’. Learning the traditions and acquiring the foraging skills for bush foods, plants and medicines has been a way of life for Central Desert families throughout time immemorial. This ‘formal education’, learning the importance of universal balance and living in the moment has been a generational tradition, passed on from mother to daughter since.
Josie’s first job was working as a Chef at the Santa Teresa Mission, whereby she recalls the memories of ‘makin’ em all soup’ and meeting her husband Robin. After their bush marriage, they moved to Mt Swan in the Utopia region and raised 8 children, 3 girls, 4 boys and her younger sister’s son.
Typical of ‘Utopia Art’, Josie’s earlier works present themselves with extensive line work depicting Body paint design and many traditional symbols often found in Central Desert Dot painting. Her recent collections such as Bush Tucker and Wild Flower Dreaming demonstrates her maturity as an artist in creating works that move beyond the traditional and tight constructions of dot painting to a fusion of abstracted forms reveal spiritual and cultural celebration. Her love and joy of being an artist is evident in the energetic canvases she produces and their ability to touch each one of us in a special kind of way.
1996 Aboriginal Desert Art Gallery, Alice Springs, N.T. Australia
1997 Aboriginal Art Galleries of Australia, Melbourne, Vic, Australia
1999 Aboriginal Art Galleries of Australia, Melbourne, Vic, Australia
2000 Aboriginal Art Galleries of Australia, Melbourne, Vic, Australia
2001 Dotted Design, Embassy of Australia, Washington D.C., USA.
2003 Chapel off Chapel Gallery, Melbourne, Australia
2002-2006 redrock Gallery, Southbank, Melbourne, Australia.
2007 June redrock Gallery, Group Exhibition, Gallery Grand Opening Beijing, P.R China
2007 July redrock Gallery, Group Exhibition China World Exhibition Centre, Beijing P.R China
2007 Auguest redrock Gallery, Group Exhibition, Grand Hyatt Hotel,Beijing, P.R China
2007 November redrock Gallery, Group Exhibition, International Art Expo, Beijing, P.R China
2008 July redrock gallery,Beijing, 2nd Gallery Opening, Group Exhibition, Beijing, P.R China
2008 November redrock gallery, Beijing: A Women’s Exhibition Beijing, P.R China
Selected collections :
• Aboriginal Desert Art Gallery, Alice Springs, N.T. Australia
• Aboriginal Art Galleries of Australia, Melbourne
• Artbank, Australia.
• Charles Sturt University Collection, Australia
• Jinta Desert Art, Sydney, Australia
• Mem Aziz Collection, Melbourne, Australia.
• redrock Gallery, Southbank, Melbourne, Australia.
• Numerous private collections held both locally and internationally
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