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Big John DODO

Karajarri people

Australia 1910 – 2003

Ngura Warngu kungulo 1990 Description: (carved sandstone head)
Place made: Bidyadanga community (La Grange), Kimberley, Western Australia, Australia
Materials & Technique: sculptures, natural pigments on sandstone

Dimensions: 37.5 h x 20.1 w x 15.5 d cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 1991
Accession No: NGA 91.1306
  • Like many of his countrymen and women, Dodo was an experienced stockman who worked on surrounding stations for decades. His artistic practice began in the 1960s when he created heads out of mud and wood, becoming recognised as a master carver and passing his knowledge onto other artists in the region. He was previously renowned for his finely executed engraving work on wooden objects and pearl shells. In about 1984, the art collector Lord Alistair McAlpine visited the mission, met the artist and commissioned a series of carved stone heads. Since McAlpine’s departure from the region similar carvings are rarely produced.

    Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra