Molly Pwerle“’s country is Atnwengerrp and her language is Anmatyerre and Alyawarr. She is in her late 80“’s, possibly born in 1922 (no records exist) and lives in Irrultja, a tiny settlement in Utopia of about 100 people. She has had little exposure to western culture and only picked up a paintbrush for the first time in 2004. Sister of the late Minnie Pwerle, Molly Pwerle“’s extended family are all artists: Barbara Weir, Aileen and Betty Mpetyane. She started painting professionally with her sisters Galya and Emily in collaboration with Minnie Pwerle. The sisters had an instant response to applying paint onto canvas, developing expressions of their dreamings that have been passed down from generation to generation.
Pwerle paints “˜Awelye Atnwengerrp“’, meaning women“’s ceremony, which is depicted by a series of lines and symbols, often criss-crossed patterns that are layered across the canvas with colours that are explosive, colourful and energetic. The patterns represent the designs painted on women’s bodies during bush tucker ceremonies in Atnwengerrp.