Rockhole at Kwala

George Tjapanangka, Pintupi / Australian, about 1938 - 2002
Walungurru (Kintore)
Western Desert
Northern Territory



Acrylic on canvas

Overall: 35 13/16 × 35 13/16 in. (91 × 91 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Gift of Will Owen and Harvey Wagner



Place Made: Australia, Oceania


21st century

Object Name


Research Area


On view


Owen. #:205


The expansive designs of this work are linked with the extensive rockhole site of Kwala on the north side of Wilkinkarra (Lake Mackay), the largest salt lake in the Great Sandy Desert in Western Australia. The trees at the bottom are desert oaks. Some of the information associated with this site is public, such as when the Tinagarri, a large group of ancestral men whose travels and ceremonies created Country, visited the site on a rock-wallaby hunt. But other knowledge is accessible only to particular or initiated members of the community. Teachings of the Tingarri ancestors explain to novices the why and how of contemporary cultural practices.Thinking about the accessibility of information and knowledge of the land, compare this image of Country with Jonathan Brown’s Maralinga displayed nearby.

From the 2023 exhibition Layered Histories: Indigenous Australian Art from the Kimberley and Central Desert, curated by Amelia Kahl, Barbara C. & Harvey P. Hood 1918 Curator of Academic Programming

Exhibition History

Layered Histories: Indigenous Australian Art from the Kimberely and Central Desert, Amelia Kahl, Curator, 5 August 2023 - 2 March 2024, Citrin Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth, Hanover, New Hampshire.


Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne, Victoria; sold to Will Owen (1952-2015) and Harvey Wagner (1931-2017), Chapel Hill, North Carolina, August 15, 2001; given to present collection, 2014.

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