Mary Napangardi Brown

Mary Napangardi Brown

Artworks

Biography

Mary Napangardi Brown was born in a bush camp at Mt Doreen, an extensive cattle breeding station just south west of Yuendumu, a remote Aboriginal community 290 km north-west of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory of Australia. As a young girl, Mary lived a traditional lifestyle, learning about gathering bush tucker, bush medicine, making necklaces for ceremonies and Aboriginal law. Whilst Mary was still young, her family was picked up by a white man and moved to Yuendumu. She lived there for some time with her family and then with her husband and fellow artist, Mick “Pegleg” Jampijinpa Brown (Dec). Mary and Mick later moved to Mt Liebig and then onto Nyirripi, 200 km west of Yuendumu. Mary still lives in Nyirripi and is married to the well known Papunya Tula artist Ronnie Jampijinpa. Mary started to paint in the early 1990s. Mary’s sisters Jeannie Napangardi Lewis, Margaret Napangardi Brown and Margaret Napangardi Turner and her niece, Joy Nangala Brown are all successful artists working with Warlukurlangu Artists. She has three sons who live in Yuendumu. Mary has been painting with Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed Art Centre in Yuendumu, since 2005. She lives in Nyirrpi a community 160 kms west of Yuendumu. As there is no art centre in Nyirrpi her painting history was sporadic and dependent on the availabiltiy of materials. However, since 2005 canvas, Warlukurlangu drops off canvas, paint and brushes for artists living in Nyirripi, on a weekly basis. Mary paints her Jukurrpa stories, Dreamings that relate to her land, its features and the plants and animals that live there. These stories were passed down to her by her father and his father’s father for millennia. Mary uses an unrestricted palette to develop a modern interpretation of her traditional culture. Mary is a grandmother and spends a lot of her time helping to take care of her grandchildren.