Thelma Judson

Thelma Dundan Ngarga Judson

Martumili Artists

Ngarga was born in the isolated Percival Lakes region of the Great Sandy Desert in the mid- 1950s. She grew up primarily around Yimiri and Kurturarra soaks. She and her young siblings would stay close to the major water sources while their parents went out hunting. During the rainy season her extended family group would separate into smaller units, and when it was hot they would come back together at the permanent water source of Yimiri. First contact with Europeans occurred in 1964, when the government sought to clear all remaining pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) Aboriginals from a large area destined for testing military weapons. Once the group was finally tracked, they were persuaded to move to Jigalong Mission to join family there. They were one of the last families to move in from the desert.

Ngarga is a talented weaver and painter. Her works depict her ngurra (home Country, camp), and its associated Jukurrpa (Dreaming). The area is dominated by a series of striking salt lakes, extending across a distance of 350km, and was formed by Wirnpa, one of the most powerful of the ancestral jila (snake) men, the last to travel the desert during the Jukurrpa.

Language: Manyjilyjarra

Exhibited Artworks