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Australian Aboriginal Dot Paintings

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Presentation on theme: "Australian Aboriginal Dot Paintings"— Presentation transcript:

1 Australian Aboriginal Dot Paintings

2 History

3 Who Are the Aborigines? A group of native Australian people
Similar to Native Americans of the US, Aborigines inhabited the continent of Australia thousands of years before the arrival of European settlers.

4 Similar to the Native Americans of the US, Aborigines lived by hunting, moving across land in harmony with nature. Materials they used were simple, natural, and functional

5 In 1770, Australia was claimed by the British
In 1770, Australia was claimed by the British. When other European settlers arrived, the Aborigines suffered a fate similar to that of Native Americans. Some were killed; others died of disease, and the rest were herded into reservations.

6 Art

7 Aboriginal Art Each piece of Aboriginal Art has a story, meaning, or function. The process of creation is more important than the result Many designs were reproduced as part of special ceremonies

8 Materials and Techniques
Most Aboriginal Artists worked on surfaces found in nature, such as bark, sand, rocks, and the human body They used simple, rough mediums and techniques

9 Dreamtime

10 What Is Dreamtime? Aborigines believe that everything in today’s world was created by Ancestral Beings long ago, during a period they call Dreamtime These beings moved across the earth creating land, people, animals, and the heavens

11 The Ancestral Beings then sank back into the earth and their spirits turned into landscape features now regarded as sacred places Today, the spirit of these beings, known as the Dreaming, live on. Aborigines renew their connections through art and ritual

12 Dreamtime and Art

13 A Western Artist is said to have created a work of art; but when an Aboriginal creates a design, it is said to have been found, often in a dream or through an unusual experience

14 Artworks are created to communicate stories, messages, or spiritual qualities, and therefore most imagery is abstracted (stylized and reduced to their most basic lines and shapes)

15 Generally, animals, birds, fish, birds, and plants are usually shown in profile (from the side), while turtles, frogs, and reptiles are shown from the top

16 Patterns Characteristic patterns include:
simple organic (curved) lines positive and negative spaces straight lines Angles jagged edges

17 Patterns were often first created during sacred ceremonies, the repetition of circles, coils, curves, dots, and colors served to transport the viewer into a mystical state of mind. This produced a heightened awareness and made it easier to feel a connection with Dreamtime

18 Point of View Many rituals required these patterns to be drawn in the sand first so that artists could become used to seeing their images from above. They would then begin painting with canvases on the ground. In Western art, objects or landscapes are usually seen from the side; in aboriginal painting, objects are seen from above

19 Art as Language Artworks were meant to serve as maps; to diagram relationships between people and the land. They record sacred journeys and contain unique vocabulary of signs, symbols, lines, and shapes that can be “read” the way we might read a subway map.

20 Past and Present Generations of Aboriginal artists living in the great central desert region of Australia have been creating art for thousands of years, but their images have long since disappeared Today, artists painting on modern canvases and boards are preserving and adapting these same unique patterns that were developed many centuries ago Traditional dot painters used natural pigments such as ochre, and crushed seeds. Today, bright colors are more common

















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