Bidyadanga Aboriginal Art
A selection of paintings showing the styles from this Aboriginal art region - some paintings may still be available for sale, while some may have been sold.
Bidyadanga is one of the larger Aboriginal communities in Western Australia, located on the coast 200 km south of Broome, on the edge of the Kimberley. The community, with about 800 residents, is on traditional land of the Karajarri people, and for many years was known as La Grange Station and operated as a telegraph post for the surrounding stations and pearl luggers.
In the 1970s La Grange Station was managed by the Catholic Church as a mission for various community groups, since the introduction of the equal pay in the pastoral industry had resulted in many Aboriginal people being forced from the cattle stations where they had lived and worked. At this time a large number of people moved to Bidyadanga from different areas and different language groups. The Aboriginal languages now represented in the community include Juwaliny, Mangala, Yawaru and Yuparinga.
The most senior artists from Bidyadanga spent their early lives in the desert living in the traditional bush way. Much of the Aboriginal art they produce reflects their experience and depicts the desert country and its hunter/gatherer lifestyle that gravitated around clan owned and managed waterholes.
By painting their traditional country and its associated culture the younger artists have started an inter-generational push to understand and represent the culture of their elders. Led by the senior artists, with their intimate knowledge of the desert landscape, the Bidyadanga Aboriginal artists have incorporated the rich colours of the saltwater country into their distinctive style of painting. In recent years the artists have established their own community art centre.