Christine Winmar is a Noongar woman, born in Midland, Western Australia in 1965. Her skin name is ‘Allawah’, an Aboriginal word meaning "Stay here". Christine was taught to paint by her father, a renowned artist, and didgeridoo craftsman. He taught her many aspects and techniques of Noongar art which reflect in her work today. Christine then began experimenting with different styles and techniques with the support of her family and friends.
Christine has also spent a few years in the Kimberley, where she further developed her skills by adopting the techniques utilized by Aboriginals in the Northern Territory. By 1997 Christine was selling her works through an Aboriginal art gallery in Perth. Her first joint exhibition followed shortly, when in 2005 she and fellow artists Mingi May Barnes, Geoff Lindsey, and Tjinanginy exhibited in Perth and Cottesloe.
In 2009 Christine exhibited her work with various other artists in Perth and San Francisco, in the “Colours of Australia” exhibition. Christine uses media such as canvas, pottery, wood, and glass. Bright and colorful patterns made using dots are a common aspect of her work.
About the Painting
Christine's painting beautifully captures the essence of her childhood memories on the Quairading Reserve and the Badjaling mission in Western Australia. The artwork showcases women gathering around watering holes, engaging in traditional ceremonies, and foraging for bush tucker. The intricate details and vivid colors give life to the cultural significance of these gatherings and provide a glimpse into the rich heritage of the region.
In this painting, Christine paints about her younger years growing up on the Quairading reserve and the Badjaling mission in Western Australia. The Quairading Nature Reserve covers 527 hectares of unique remnant vegetation that includes a diverse mixture of woodland forests and native shrubland. The open woodland areas of the Reserve have outstanding examples of wandoo, york and salmon gum forests that are unique to the Central Wheatbelt.
The Badjaling Mission reserve was created in 1933 for the United Aborigines Mission and originally also included all the land contained in DEC Reserve 23758. The reserve was the camping ground and home for about 30 Nyungar families from 1887 to 1954. It was used by local Nyungar people prior to colonization for traditional hunting, food collecting, and camping as it contained several freshwater sources. Nyungar people have continued to camp in the area from time to time even after people were officially moved to Quairading Reserve in 1954 when the mission closed. Nyungar people formally moved back to the Reserve in 1980, the current housing being established in 1998.