Born around 1928, Kudditji Kngwarreye, the younger half-brother of the late Emily Kame Kngwarreye, had a traditional bush upbringing in the Utopia region before starting a long career as a stockman and mine worker. An Anmatyerre elder and custodian of many important Dreamings, Kudditji was inspired by the work coming out of Papunya to paint his own Dreamings, telling of the travels and law of the Emu ancestors.
Starting in 1986, his precisely dotted Emu Dreaming paintings, featuring ranks of coloured roundels and other 'hieroglyphs' on a chequered or dotted background, became sought after by major galleries in the Northern Territory. Breaking out of this style after some years, Kudditji's work became far looser and more 'abstract', and some commentators have seen a strong similarity with his sister Emily's work - but it is not clear who was the first to set out on this path. The demand for his earlier, detailed style, however, moved Kudditji to return to it, and it was only in 2003 that he began to exhibit the extraordinary, saturated colour paintings that have seen his reputation grow nationally and internationally.
Kudditji's works capture light in a unique way - which has led to his work being compared with that of the French Impressionists. His brushwork is such that colours change significantly with the light. The work in fact, changes throughout the day and by night under different lighting conditions. A subtle change in the light outside will cause different colours to light up while others recede. Specks of brilliant orange, violet, blue, yellow, all seem to take their turns to dance in front of the canvas as conditions change.
2005: Waterhole Aboriginal Art, Danks Street, Sydney.
2005: New Paintings, Vivien Anderson Gallery, Melbourne
2005: Colours in Country, Art Mob, Hobart, Tasmania
2004:Waterhole Aboriginal Art, Sofitel Wentworth Hotel Exhibition, Sydney.
2004: My Country, New Paintings, Vivien Anderson Gallery, Melbourne
2004: My Country, Japingka Gallery Perth
2003 New Paintings, Vivien Anderson Gallery, Melbourne
1992 Tjukurrpa, Museum fur Volkerkunde, Basel
1991 Central Australian Aboriginal Art and Craft Exhibition, Araluen Centre, Alice Springs
1990 Art Dock, Contemporary Art from Australia, Noumea, New Caledonia