101cm x 46cm
Valda Napangardi Granites is the granddaughter of the late Paddy Japaljarri and Bessie Nakamarra Sims, two founding artists of Warlukurlangu Artists. Valda was born in 1974 in Alice Springs and grew up in Yuendumu, an Aboriginal community located 290kms north-west of Alice Springs, where she still lives. Her mother was Alma Nungurrayi Granites.
Valda paints the Seven Sisters Dreaming with a similar style to her famous late mother. She attended the local school. Valda has been painting since 1993. She paints the Jukurrpa (Dreaming) stories passed down to her by her mother and father and their parents before them for millennia. These are creation stories which closely relate to the features and animals found in her family’s traditional lands. Valda is married and has one daughter, Nathania Granites, who has begun to paint as well and has built herself a profile of her own as an artist. Valda worked with the Yuendumu Old People’s program before resigning to look after her daughter.
The Star (Seven Sisters) Dreaming depicts the story of the seven ancestral Napaljarri sisters who are found in the night sky today in the cluster of seven stars in the constellation Taurus, more commonly known as the Pleiades. The Pleiades are seven women of the Napaljarri skin group and are often depicted in paintings of this Dreaming carrying the Jampijinpa man ‘wardilyka’ (the bush turkey) who is in love with the Napaljarri-warnu and who represents the Orion’s Belt cluster of stars.
Jukurra-jukurra, the morning star, is a Jakamarra man who is also in love with the seven Napaljarri sisters and is often shown chasing them across the night sky. In a final attempt to escape from the Jakamarra the Napaljarri-warnu turned themselves into fire and ascended to the heavens to become stars. The custodians of the Napaljarri-warnu Jukurrpa are Japaljarri/Jungarrayi men and Napaljarri/Nungarrayi women.