Australian art visits ReDot via online exhibition until 12 August
Masterpieces of Paula Paul from Mornington Island are the first in a series of ReDot’s online exhibition.
In a release, the ReDot Fine Art Gallery is proud to be showcasing an online exhibition - the first in a series - of beautiful works from one of Australia's pre-eminent art centres - Mornington Island.
Like other artists from Bentinck Island, Kuruwarriyingathi Bijarrb Paula Paul came late to art and art making – but this late start has not impacted the beautiful pieces she creates, have a look at the online show and if you would like we can send you an e-catalogue of all the works and you will understand what we mean, her works are spectacular.
Paula Paul’s earliest paintings depicted her favourite motifs of the time: shells, rocks and oyster reefs represented as roundels of contrasting colour on darkly painted backgrounds (often blues or deep purples). She said of these works: “Along the beach of my country are big white rocks. I paint them and I paint the little white shells that are up on the beach. We call them dinghy shells.”
Paula’s work is continually evolving. Her Burrkunda (scar) paintings are constructed differently to the works that feature shells – the backgrounds are white and the marks are made using a single colour. They record the Kaiadilt tradition of marking the body: the ritualised scarring undertaken by men, and the mourning behaviour of women that involves making multiple cuts on their scalps as expressions of grief.
Thick stripes of paint are used to build up a surface of markings producing sombre yet highly significant works. They are dramatic in their simplicity and beauty, and stand alone in her oeuvre.
Paula Paul’s work has been exhibited widely throughout Australia, most notably in commercial shows in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart, Darwin and Cairns. She was also part of the exhibition 'Together' at the Sharjah Museum for Contemporary Arab Art in the United Arab Emirates in 2008, and her journey is recorded in the book The Heart of Everything: the art and artists of Mornington and Bentinck Islands, published in 2008.
She also held her first solo exhibition was in Melbourne in the same year. These are significant achievements for an artist in their 70s who has been painting for only a few years.