2017/0064 Unknown woman and baby 1

Unknown woman and baby 1

Artist

Julie DOWLING
Aboriginal/Indigenous
Birth:
30 Jan 1969
 in
Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia

Artwork

Title
Unknown woman and baby 1
Date
2005
Medium/Material
synthetic polymer paint, red ochre, glitter and metallic paint on canvas
Dimensions
91.0 x 71.0 cm (Height x Width x Depth)
Credit line
Gift of Brigitte Braun, 2017
State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia
Accession Number
2017/0064
Currently not on display

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Extended Label

This painting shows a mother and child in European clothes. Theoriginal photograph was taken in the late 19th Century and is part of theHume Collection at the University of Queensland. The photographeris unknown. These photographs were used as postcards and curios, aswell as evidence of religious and scientific superiority over our women asexotic ‘others’.I wanted this painting to be an essay on assimilation and the transitionsbetween the lifestyle of the mother and her baby. The baby would havegrown to have more exposure to western culture as symbolised by herred dress. The mother is silent and thoughtful avoiding the viewer as ifwishing to be left to be free from the western gaze.I paint such women because they are ‘unknown’ individuals whose spiritlives on only in the draws of museums. I am claiming these imagesand re-interpreting or translating them for my family, and myself, asFirst Nation people today. There are references to Catholic religiousiconography especially to the ‘Madonna and child’ symbolism seen inRenaissance art.

Artist statement, 2018This painting shows a mother and child in European clothes. The original photograph was taken in the late 19th Century and is part of the Hume Collection at the University of Queensland. The photographer is unknown. These photographs were used as postcards and curios, as well as evidence of religious and scientific superiority over our women as exotic 'others'. I wanted this painting to be an essay on assimilation and the transitions between the lifestyle of the mother and her baby. The baby would have grown to have more exposure to western culture as symbolised by her red dress. The mother is silent and thoughtful avoiding the viewer as if wishing to be left to be free from the western gaze. I paint such women because they are 'unknown' individuals whose spirit lives on only in the drawers of museums. I am claiming these images and re-interpreting or translating them for my family, and myself, as First Nation people today. There are references to Catholic religious iconography especially to the 'Madonna and child' symbolism seen in Renaissance art.

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Vernon id: 22884