Judy Napangardi Watson

Judy Watson was included as one of Australia's 50 most collectable
artists by the prestigious Australian Art Collector magazine.


Judy Napangardi Watson

Born: 	    	c1925 
Died: 	    	18-5-2016 
Region: 	 	Tanami Desert 
Community: 	Lajamanu 
Language: 	Warlpiri 
Social Affiliation: Napangardi subsection 

Medium: 	Acrylic paint on canvas. 
Subjects: 	Ngarlyipi (Snake Vine), Karnta(Woman), Mina Mina, Kanakurlangu. 

Janganpa / Mawurrji Jukurrpa (Native Possum & Mawurrji Dreaming)
11 x 1 metre large collaborative Canvas for the foyer of the Australian 
Bureau of Statistics, Canberra 

Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
Aboriginal Art Museum, Utrecht
Gordon Darling Foundation, Canberra
Flinders University Art Museum, Melbourne
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
National Gallery of Victoria 
South Australian Museum, Adelaide
Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin 

Individual Exhibitions: 
2005 - Karnta Jukurrpa, Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne. 
2004 - Judy Napangardi Watson, Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne. 

Group Exhibitions: 
2005 - Yilpinji, Love, Magic and Ceremony, Galerie DAD, Mantes-la-Jolie, France. 
2004 - New Paintings by Judy Napangardi Watson And Betsy Napangardi Lewis, Alcaston
Gallery, Melbourne; All about art, Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne; Colour Power - 
Aboriginal Art Post 1984, National Gallery of Victoria Federation Square, Melbourne;
Australian Aboriginal Art Collector's Exhibition, Flinders Lane Gallery, Melbourne;
EXPLAINED, A closer look at Aboriginal art, Aboriginal Art Museum, Utrecht, The Netherlands. 
2003 - Colours of Mina Mina, Raft Artspace, Darwin, NT; 20th Telstra National 
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award, Museum and Art Gallery of the 
Northern Territory, Darwin. 
2002 - Warlukurlangu Artists Cooperative of Yuendumu, Jeffrey Moose Gallery, Seatlle
USA;New Works from Warlukurlangu, Indigenart, Perth WA;Warlukurlangu Artists 
Cooperative of Yuendumu One Union Square Lobby, Seattle, USA; New Paintings from 
Yuendumu Rebecca Hossack Gallery, London; Warlukurlangu Collection Parliament House,
2000 - jangku yinyi, Carey Baptist Grammar School, Melbourne; Beaver Galleries, 
Canberra; Fremantle Print Award, Fremantle; Kurawari, Desart Gallery, Sydney; 
Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi, Melbourne; Marking the Paper, Desart Gallery, Sydney; 
Journey to the North West, Palya Art, Sydney; Wayuta, The Desart Janganpa Gallery, 
Alice Springs. 
1999 - International Women's Day Exhibition, Watch This Space,Alice Springs; Desert
Mob Show, Araluen Centre, Alice Springs; Mina Mina, Hogarth Galleries, Sydney. 
1998 - Art Gallery Culture Store, Rotterdam, The Netherlands; A Thousand Journeys, 
Tin Shed Gallery, University of Sydney;Kurrawarri - Kirli, Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi,
Melbourne;Framed Gallery, Darwin; Desert Designs, Perth. 
1997 - Hogarth Gallery, Sydney. 
1995 - SOFA, Miami, U.S.A;SOFA, Chicago, U.S.A;Bellas Gallery, Brisbane. 
1994 - Armstrong Gallery, Florida;i>Power of the Land, Masterpieces of Aboriginal 
Art, National Gallery of Victoria; Echoes of the Dreamtime, Osaka, Japan. 
1993 - Adelaide Town Hall, (in association with The Pacific ArtsSymposium); Bellas 
Gallery, Brisbane; Northern Territory Art Award, Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs;
Sutton Gallery, Melbourne; CINAFE (Chicago International New Art Forms Exposition), U.S.A.. 
1992 - The Long Gallery, Hobart; Hogarth Gallery of Dreams, Sydney. 
1991 - Darwin Performing Arts Centre, Darwin. 
1990 - Darwin Performing Arts Centre, Darwin; I.U.N.C. (showing at Hilton Hotel), 
Perth;Women's Exhibition. The Women's Gallery, Melbourne. 

Select Bibliography:
Australian National University Crossing Cultures: Art from the Boxer Collection. 
ANU, Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra 2000 
Morphy, H. Aboriginal Art, Phaidon Press Limited, London,1998. 
Morphy, H. and Boles, M.S. (eds.) Art from the land University of Virginia Press, 
Virginia, U.S.A., 1999. 
Ryan, Judith (editor), Colour Power - Aboriginal Art Post 1984, National Gallery of
Victoria, Melbourne, 2004 (C). 
Birnberg & Kreczmanski,  Aboriginal Artists dictionary of biographies, JB Publishing, (C)

 Discovery Media, Documentation Pty Ltd, and the Australian 
Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies

Judy Watson was born in c1925 at Yarungkanji, Mt. Doreen Station, at the time when 
many Warlpiri and other Central and Western Desert Peoples were living a traditional
nomadic life. With her family Judy made many trips on foot back to and lived for 
long periods at Mina Mina and Yingipurlangu, her ancestral country on the border of
the Tanami and Gibson Deserts. These places are rich in bush tucker such as 
wanakiji, bush plums, yakajirri, bush tomatoes, and wardapi, sand goanna. Judy still
frequently goes hunting in the country west of Yuendumu, near her homelands. 

Judy was taught painting by her elder sister, Maggie Napangardi Watson. She painted
alongside her at Warlukurlangu artists for a number of years, developing her own 
unique style. Though a very tiny woman Judy has had ten children, two of whom she 
has outlived. She is a woman of incredible energy, this is transmitted to her work 
through her dynamic use of colour, and energetic "dragged dotting" style, she has 
developed a popular and distinctive style of contrasting lines of colour with richly 
textured surfaces. She is at the forefront of a move towards more abstract rendering 
of Jukurrpa by Warlpiri arists, however her work retains strong kurruwarri, the 
details which tell of the sacredness of place and song in her culture. Judy's Jukurrpa 
are Ngarlyipi (Snake Vine), Karnta (Woman), Mina Mina, and Kanakurlangu.