To Dream, to Collect

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Dini Campbell Tjampitjinpa

1940 - 2000 Jupiter Well, WA, Australia

1 Works exhibited

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  • About the Artist
  • Curriculum Vitae

Born in the early ’40s in Pintupi country west of Kiwirrkura, across the WA border near Jupiter Well. He grew up in the bush with his family, and had already been initiated when the group walked into the Catholic mission settlement of Balgo in the late ’50s. While living at Balgo, Dini did stock (cattle) work and wood carting. While visiting relatives in Papunya, he observed the old men painting.

During one of these visits in 1981, Dini had his first experience of painting on canvas as one of the team of men who assisted Uta Uta Tjangala on the monumental canvas depicting events at the site of Yumari now in the collection of the National Museum of Australia. Dini does not appear to have painted at Balgo but the influence of such Balgo stylistic innovations as as linked dotting was evident in the paintings which he produced for Papunya Tula Artists after moving from Balgo to Kintore in the early ’80s. He painted the stories of the Tingari cycle in his country round Lake Nyaru and Walatju. Married with two young children, he was one of the most dedicated artists working out of Kintore in the 1980s and 1990s.

Tingari Cycle refers to the Dreaming and its Laws for the Pintupi language group of the Australian Central Western Desert. The Tingari is the Creation era when the Dreamtime Ancestors moved across the lands, creating the features of the landscape and all aspects of the natural world. The Tingari Ancestors stopped at specific sites on their journey, and the events that occurred at each site as they camped there, gave rise to all the features of the surrounding environment and the animals and plants that are found there. These Creation events have been embodied in the song cycles learned by initiated Pintupi elders, and these long narrative songs provide the Laws and social structures that traditional Pintupi people have lived under.

As younger people are initiated into the Law, they are taken through gradual stages of knowledge of traditional matters, which becomes a life-long process. The custodial roles of the Tingari sites are handed down along family lines – they are tied to the kinship (skin) groups that are aligned to family groups. Often two skin groups will have custodial roles for a Tingari site, which further binds them together by their custodial obligations. The cohesion of traditional society is reinforced by the strong Laws and beliefs that are found in the Tingari song cycles. Dini developed his style based around circular shapes that enclosed other motifs, like a keeping place for cultural ideas. These geometric shapes spread across the canvas, as though the culture spread broadly to all parts of the desert.

PUBLIC COLLECTIONS:

Art Gallery of NSW
National Gallery of Victoria
Art Gallery of South Australia

Works by Dini Campbell Tjampitjinpa

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1998

183 x 90 cm

14100,00 €

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