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Australian Aboriginal Art - Dreamtime Australia Unit.

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1 Australian Aboriginal Art - Dreamtime Australia Unit

2 Dreamtime The expression “Dreamtime” is often used to refer to the “time before time”, or “the time of the creation of all things”. The Australian Aborigines believe that long, long ago the earth was soft and had no form. The features of the landscape were created as the result of the heroic acts of ancestral spirits, who often assumed the form of animals. The origins of land shapes—mountains, deserts, and water holes—echo these events, which the Aborigines refer to as Dreamtime. For at least fifty thousand years, the Aborigines have maintained the traditions of Dreamtime through stories, music, dance, art, and ceremony. And in the land around Kakadu, this tradition is honored today.

3 Dreamtime Stories Australian Aborigines created stories to teach each other about the Dreamtime. These stories taught about life, birth, love, food gathering, hunting, warfare, marriage and death, but also about the Creation. The traditional Aboriginal way to educate about history, culture and laws was through storytelling. They used a combination of arts form such as painting, singing, music and dancing to illustrate the ancient "Dreamtime Stories". Because the ”Dreamtime Stories" have been handed down through the generations, they are not owned by individuals. They belong to a group. The storytellers are chosen by the Elders, and have the obligation to pass the stories along, ensuring that young people build and retain a sense of who they are.

4 Aboriginal Art Today, paintings are created using modern-day materials, but the use of traditional symbols and art styles helps to keep this ancient culture alive. The symbols used in contemporary Aboriginal paintings are the same as those found on cave paintings and rock Art.


6 Dot Paintings Dot painting are the traditional visual art form of the Aborigines in Western Australia Central Desert. The canvas is covered in small dots of paint which create patterns and symbols. These symbols can easily be recognized by those familiar with the Dreamtime Story illustrated. Bright colors are now more common with the use of acrylic paint, but traditional dot painters used natural pigments such as crushed seeds.








14 Dreamtime Symbols Certain symbols are used often in aboriginal art to depict reoccurring objects and themes.

15 Dreamtime Symbols


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