One of the East Kimberley’s longest practising artists will showcase her unique artwork at an exhibition in Subiaco this month.

Senior artist Peggy Griffiths, from Waringarri Aboriginal Arts in Kununurra, will present her East meets West collection of six large paintings, one of which has already been acquired by the Parliament House Collection in Canberra.

The artworks depict traditional country within the Keep River National Park, located at the border of Western Australia and the Northern Territory. The works capture the Kimberley wet season, showing the Keep River flooding the country and drenching it in colour.

Peggy’s collection has been created using only natural ochre pigments, a crumbly hard rock heavily coloured by iron oxide.

I use only ochre pigments in my paintings mixing a lot of different colour, she said.

In these paintings I paint the wind blowing through the spinifex grasses

I paint my country, the rivers and the hills, the caves and dreaming places.

Sometimes I paint the floodwaters – I paint the grasses dancing in the wind.

That’s the spirit, still alive in my country. I paint this country because I know it and because I want other people to know this is my country.

Waringarri Aboriginal Arts is one of four art centres that are part of the Kimberley Aboriginal Artists alliance. The alliance keeps Aboriginal culture strong by supporting cultural practice, recording important stories and celebrating artists’ connection to their country.

It is supported by the Department of Industry and Resources through its Aboriginal Economic Development (AED) Division. AED works to increase the economic independence of Aboriginal people by supporting the establishment and development of sustainable economic development.

Waringarri Aboriginal Arts Manager, Cathy Cummins, said Peggy was one of the art centres’ most important and longest practising artists.

Peggy is very important to the art centre because not only is she one of the leading senior artists but she is also very committed to the art centre, she said.

She is very supportive to other artists, especially the younger artists who are paramount to keeping art and culture strong.

Her collection at this exhibition is exquisite. It is an opportunity for the public to experience the story of the Kimberley and view the strong sense of individualism that Peggy presents through her art.

Peggy, who was previously Chairperson of Waringarri Aboriginal Arts, was the first indigenous artist to win the Fremantle Print Award in 1995.

Two of her paintings have been acquired by the Art Gallery of Western Australia, and she is represented in many other significant public collections including the National Gallery of Australia, Edith Cowan University and Artbank.

The East meets West exhibition will run from Friday, November 14 to Friday, December 4 at Seva Frangos Art in Subiaco.