Utopia Bush Medicine Leaf Artists - Petyarre Sisters

Bush Medicine Leaves are a key motif for Gloria Petyarre and a number of Australian Aboriginal artists from Utopia, located several hours northest of Alice Spings.

 

Bush Medicine Leaves by Jeannie Petyarre

Jeannie Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018880  |  acrylic on canvas  |  90 x 60 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Roseanne Pwerle Morton

Roseanne Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018978  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 45 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Cindy Pwerle Morton

Cindy Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018874  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 45 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Roseanne Pwerle Morton

Roseanne Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018965  |  acrylic on canvas  |  120 x 60 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018717  |  acrylic on canvas  |  89 x 87 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018502  |  acrylic on canvas  |  90 x 90 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 019143  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 60 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 019159  |  acrylic on canvas  |  109 x 93 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Rosemary Petyarre

Rosemary Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018839  |  acrylic on canvas  |  71 x 56 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018721  |  acrylic on canvas  |  196 x 114 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Yam Leaf by Dulcie Long Pwerle

Dulcie Long Pwerle  |  Yam Leaf

Jap 018836  |  acrylic on canvas  |  117 x 90 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Gloria Petyarre

Gloria Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 014907  |  acrylic on canvas  |  245 x 148 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Jeannie Petyarre

Jeannie Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018835  |  acrylic on canvas  |  120 x 91 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Rosemary Petyarre

Rosemary Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018840  |  acrylic on canvas  |  62 x 61 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Yam Leaf by Dulcie Long Pwerle

Dulcie Long Pwerle  |  Yam Leaf

Jap 018843  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 44 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 019157  |  acrylic on canvas  |  94 x 89 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Gloria Petyarre

Gloria Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 014908  |  acrylic on canvas  |  239 x 152 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Jeannie Petyarre

Jeannie Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018850  |  acrylic on canvas  |  183 x 150 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Yam Leaf by Dulcie Long Pwerle

Dulcie Long Pwerle  |  Yam Leaf

Jap 018844  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 44 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Jeannie Petyarre

Jeannie Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018851  |  acrylic on canvas  |  92 x 76 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Roseanne Pwerle Morton

Roseanne Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018962  |  acrylic on canvas  |  118 x 95 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Roseanne Pwerle Morton

Roseanne Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018975  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 45 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Rosemary Petyarre

Rosemary Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018120  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 45 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 019156  |  acrylic on canvas  |  93 x 89 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 019158  |  acrylic on canvas  |  94 x 91 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Jeannie Petyarre

Jeannie Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018849  |  acrylic on canvas  |  150 x 92 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 015424  |  acrylic on linen  |  90 x 60 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018715  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 60 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Roseanne Pwerle Morton

Roseanne Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018986  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 30 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Roseanne Pwerle Morton

Roseanne Pwerle Morton  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018985  |  acrylic on canvas  |  60 x 30 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Abie Loy Kemarre

Abie Loy Kemarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 012194  |  acrylic on linen  |  97 x 95 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves by Jeannie Petyarre

Jeannie Petyarre  |  Bush Medicine Leaves

Jap 018882  |  acrylic on canvas  |  90 x 60 cm

Add To Enquiry Cart    ► How To buy

Bush Medicine Leaves

What style of painting is Gloria Petyarre most famous for?

The theme of Bush Medicine Leaves was developed in paintings by Gloria Petyarre (1945-2021) and became a powerful part of her painting imagery during the last 20 years of her career.

Where is the Bush Medicine Leaves story from?

The story is an important one for Anmatyerre and Alyawarr people of Utopia homelands in Central Australia. In the process of making their paintings the artists are paying homage to the spirit of the medicinal plant and encouraging its regeneration for its healing powers.

Are there other famous artists from this region?

Gloria Petyarre is one of the best known artists from the Utopia region, north-east of Alice Springs. Many famous artists have come from this area, which began in the mid 1970s to train artists in the techniques of Batik printing on fabric. Other major artists include Emily Kngwarreye, Kathleen Petyarre, Minnie Pwerle and Rosemary Petyarre. The skills that the artists learned during the seven years that they produced their remarkable batik designs were to have a lasting influence on the later paintings that they produced. These skills include making fine line work, creating repetitive patterns that form a rhythmic flow across the canvas, and working in layers that build up detail and colour variation.

Are there other members of Gloria Petyarre who continue to paint Bush Medicine Leaves?

Gloria passed on the artistic story to her immediate family including Rosemary Petyarre (born 1950) and Jeannie Petyarre (born 1956). Other extended members of the family paint references to the Bush Medicine plant including Gracie Morton Pwerle (born 1956) and Dulcie Long Pwerle (born 1979). Younger generational artists continue the tradition, including Roseanne Pwerle Morton and Janet Golder Kngwarreye.

The painting tradition incorporates a sense of rhythm and movement in the representation of the Bush Medicine Leaves, perhaps suggesting its connection to the lives of the traditional owners and to the age old traditions that form the bond between the people and the land.

Other Artists Painting Bush Medicine Leaves

Cindy Morton Pwerle

Cindy Pwerle Morton | Bush Medicine Leaves |
Jap 018874

Born

c1976

Language

Alyawarre

Region

Utopia

Skin Name

Pwerle

Cindy Morton Pwerle (Pwerl) was born at Utopia Station, approximately 250 km north-east of Alice Springs c.1976. Her family’s traditional country is associated with the Mosquito Bore (Lyentye) region, an outstation of Utopia where her family moved some years ago. Cindy comes from a family of artists. She is the daughter of renowned artist Gracie Pwerle Morton and niece of the famous award-winning Utopian artists Kathleen and Gloria Petyarre. Her mother and aunties began their painting careers in the 1980s at Utopia working initially with batik before transposing their designs onto canvas. From the early minimalist works, Cindy has developed her own individual style expressing her stories about country that are highly detailed and often combining both strong lines and semi-circular designs, to create a unique aerial depiction of her country. She is a highly sought-after artist.

Cindy’s stories are reflected most prominently in her depictions of Mountain Devil Lizard Dreaming and Bush Plum Dreaming. The significance of the Mountain Devil Lizard is extremely important to the people of Utopia, as the once feared lizard is held sacred since the Lizard’s journey throughout the land defined its landscape and sacred sites. Similarly, Cindy depicts a creation story in her Bush Plum Dreaming. The story goes that Bush Plum seeds were blown across the lands at the time of creation and still today. Its fruit continues to be a valuable source of food. Many works depict women winnowing the seeds of the bush plum in preparation for bush damper. The bush plum is a prostrate plant that grows in a great profusion of colour after the rain, but very quickly disintegrates after long hot summer months. Generally found growing alongside creek beds, it is a small fruit with black seeds that can be eaten raw or cooked and is collected when the fruit is golden in colour. The bush plum continues to be an important food source as it is very high in vitamin C content. The Dreaming is celebrated in women’s ceremonies which teaches the young initiates about seasonal change both in nature and in women’s lives.

Cindy’s earlier paintings are distinctively minimalist, highlighted by delicate dotting and a traditional palette. Other works have subtle dissecting dotted lines that have a rhythmic flow across the canvas.

Roseanne Morton Petrarre

Roseanne Pwerle Morton | Bush Medicine Leaves |
Jap 018978

Born

1984

Language

Anmatyerre

Region

Utopia

 

 

Roseanne Morton Petyarre is an Anmatyerre woman from the Utopia region of Central Australia. She was born at Boundary Bore in Utopia in 1984. Utopia is located 280 km north-east of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory. Roseanne had a traditional upbringing, attending school at Utopia so she could stay close to her family.

Roseanne is part of a family of well-established artists. She is the daughter of accomplished and much sought-after Utopia artist, Gracie Morton Pwerle and the grand-daughter of the internationally famous Kathleen Petyarre.  There is a rich artistic tradition that runs through Roseanne’s family and also the Utopia community. Not only Gracie’s aunties are artists but also her sisters, Mary, Rita and Elizabeth. Roseanne learnt from an early age the art of painting her Dreamings, associated ceremonies and the bush foods that sustain their people, by watching her mother, aunties and grandmothers. She is one of the exciting new generation of artists from the Petyarre/Pwerle families to emerge from this region.

Roseanne continues to live at Utopia with her husband, Papunya artist, James Morris, and their two children. A lovely woman with immense talent, this third-generation artist will no doubt have a long and successful career.

Bernadine Johnson

Bernadine Johnson | Bush Medicine Leaves
Jap 018696

Born

1965

Language

Anmatyerre

Region

Utopia

Bernadine Johnson was born in 1965 at Utopia, north-east of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory of Australia.

In her paintings, she incorporates traditional iconography and realistic elements. The themes she depicts are primarily bush medicines, yam dreaming and body painting. As a bush woman, she is familiar with her land and its abundance of bush tucker species, as well as medicinal plants and native fauna. These are the stories that she has inherited, along with important women’s stories, all of which form the basis of her paintings.

Bernadine is married to Stephen Martin Pitjara, the brother of well-known artist Anna Price Pitjara. Bernadine divides her time between Alice Springs and Adelaide, which is where she spends the majority of her time with her husband and two children.

Bush Medicine Leaves are collected by the women and are used in a variety of different ways. They can be boiled in water and the liquid used as a drinking medicine. This medicine can ease stomach ache. The leaves can also be crushed and mixed with kangaroo fat to create a salve that is applied to burns and abrasions on the skin.

Find out more: