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The Rich History and Diversity of Aboriginal Paintings

Often, a visit to an art gallery escalates one’s mood. The beautiful brushstrokes, countless colours, and diverse stories are woven to produce a single artwork, and the immense perseverance behind each picture is bound to offer a light feeling. Many humans tend to find optimism and bliss through art; some fantastic examples of art are aboriginal paintings. There is a reason behind the craze when art aficionados notice any aboriginal art for sale. This 60,000-year-old art culture still makes heads turn in any art gallery.

But why is aboriginal art so much in vogue even after thousands of years? Here is the history and meaning behind these paintings.

History of Aboriginal Art

The origin of Aboriginal art dates back 60,000 years or even more. The masterminds behind this were the indigenous Australians who started expressing themselves and their tribe’s history and culture through these paintings. The art is created with different symbols and icons replicating their original lifestyle back in those times. Quite in anticipation, Aboriginal art is the oldest art form in the world.

Rock art is one of the variations of the aboriginal art form. More than 100,000 pieces of rock art have been discovered in Australia, with Northern Territory’s Kakadu National Park housing around 5,000. No wonder so many art lovers plan their trips to Australia.

The first few thousand years were mostly about using ochres to paint bodies, rocks, and barks. It was around the 1930s that the first picture was discovered in watercolour at the Hermannsburg Mission near Alice Springs. The painting contained intricate desert landscapes and was showcased in the first exhibition by the first ever aboriginal watercolour painter, Albert Namatjira, in Adelaide.

The Inception of Contemporary Aboriginal Art

It was in 1971 that a teacher named Geoffrey Bardon while working with Aboriginal children in a place called Papunya, witnessed the Aboriginal men concocting stories while drawing symbols on the sand. That inspired him to motivate those men to paint similar stories on canvases. That very moment created the inception of the Aboriginal Art movement. Every Aboriginal artist requires permission to paint each tale. The artist has the liberty to paint stories only about their tribe.

Why are Dots Important in Aboriginal Art?

Dot painting carries a great significance in Aboriginal art. Dots were applied to conceal secretive information about Aboriginal tribes from white men. Dot painting was highly regarded because of its ability to discreet the original essence, symbols, and iconography.

Diversity of Aboriginal Art

One of the mesmerising facts about Aboriginal art and the reason behind the human interest in Aboriginal art for sale is that each picture tells the story about its region. Each artwork reflects the community from where it develops.

For instance, ochre paints were witnessed in Arnhem Land and East Kimberly. The colours used to make these paintings were sourced from the local land. The original colours used to make the paintings were black, red, white, and yellow. It was followed by adding sage greens, saltbush mauves, and smokey greens.

Aboriginal paintings are currently in demand, and for all the right reasons. They revive the past culture by beautifully presenting the art on a canvas for the world to see. The tribes have successfully carried forward their singularity through all these years. This love for Aboriginal art among people has indeed helped the indigenous Australians grow financially and, most significantly, gain due respect.

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