Judy Watson Napangardi

Judy was born in around 1925 at the remote, Mount Doreen station “Yarungkanji” (350km North West of Alice Springs). Judy and many Warlpiri people of Judy’s generation grew up living a traditional nomadic lifestyle. Travelling vast distances by foot, hunting and gathering in the harsh desert environment.

Judy and her people would often hunt and gather food at “Mina Mina”, her ancestral country on the border of the Tanami and Gibson Deserts. These places are rich in bush tucker such as wanakiji – bush plums, yakajirri – bush tomatoes, and wardapi – sand goanna. Judy still visits her homelands for hunting and to collect bush tucker, as she did with her family as a young girl.

Her paintings depict the Dreaming of her sacred land “Mina Mina”. Judy has developed a distinctive style of vivid colour and organic composition that has led to her widespread appreciation in the art world. Judy uses a “drag and dot” technique, where the brush does not leave the canvas as she paints. Some say that this technique mimics the style of dancing typical of Warlpiri women, in which they drag their feet through the sand.