Frank Japanangka

Frank Japanangka

Artworks

Biography

Born ‘in the bush’ near Yuelamu in the 1920’s, Frank (or Franky) Japanangka is keeper of the Yuelamu site and a leading figure in the Mt Allan community. Yuelamu is approximately 70 km from Yuendumu and is located on the site of the old Mount Allan Pastoral lease. His daughters Carol Napangardi Frank (Dec) and Peggy Nampijinpa Brown, who was the recipient of the Order of the Australia Medal (2007) for her work in the successful Yuendumu Petrol sniffing program, and several of his nieces whom he raised are also painters with Warlukurlangu Artists. Frank Japanangka worked as a stockman in earlier years. An Anmatyerre speaker, his country is Yuelamu and he paints for that country. In recent years, he has withdrawn more from community politics to reside mainly on the outstation at Yulyipinyu, close to the western boundary of Mt Allan. Before retiring Frank did not paint a great deal but since retiring from community politics Frank has time to paint and has been painting consistently with Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed Art Centre located in Yuendumu, since 2008. He paints several dreamings but the one that features regularly are Ngapa Jukurrpa (Water Dreaming), depicting Puyuru, a site west of Yuendumu; Karnta jukurrpa (Women’s Dreaming) depicting a sacred site; and Janganpa Jukurrpa (Bush-tail Possum Dreaming), depicting his country, its features and the animals and plants that live on the land.