Paddy Nyunkuny BEDFORD

Gija/Kija people

Australia 1920 /1924 – 2007

Middle Brand 2000 Place made: Kununurra, Kimberley, Western Australia, Australia
Materials & Technique: paintings, natural earth pigments on canvas

Primary Insc: signed, titled and dated verso
Dimensions: 135.0 h x 122.0 w cm
Acknowledgement: Gift of James and Jacqui Erskine 2009
Accession No: NGA 2009.546
  • Paddy Bedford, also known by his traditional name of Nyunkuny, was born on Bedford Downs Station, south-west of Warmun (Turkey Creek). Like many Aboriginal people of his generation he inherited his surname from the location of his birth. It has been widely documented that he was given his Christian name by the manager of the cattle station, Paddy Quilty. Bedford’s personal history was fraught with all of the negative aspects of frontier engagement between black and white societies. As a boy he worked on old Greenvale and Bow River cattle stations, and later on Bedford Downs, and was paid with rations that often consisted of flour, tea, sugar, tobacco and blankets.

    When government legislation changed in 1969, introducing equal salaries for both Aboriginal and white pastoral workers, many Aboriginal people including Bedford were sacked. He had married and had children but they were taken away from him and his wife and placed on a mission.

    Bedford began painting at Jirrawun Arts during the late 1990s. He was already a senior cultural leader and lawman and therefore was quite competent in the depiction of his cultural tradition in visual form. Characteristically, Bedford’s paintings allude to, rather than depict, an event in his pared down renditions of features of the landscape. Middle Brand, 2000 refers to a place called Boonoonggoowirrin (Middle Branch Creek)[1] that belonged to an ancestral Hill Goanna who, in the Ngarrangkarni (Dreaming), was chased by a nightjar and a bat who coveted his land.

    Franchesca Cubillo

    [1] Nyunkuny used to pronounce ‘Branch’ as ‘Brand’.

    Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2010
    From: Franchesca Cubillo and Wally Caruana (eds) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art: collection highlights National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2010

  • 培迪·扬库尼·贝德福德 (Paddy Nyunkuny Bedford)
    《中支》(Middle Brand)2000年
    135.0 (高) x 122.0 (宽)厘米
    2009年詹姆斯和雅基·厄斯金(James and Jacqui Erskine)赠送
    收录号:NGA 2009.546

    培迪·贝德福德还以土著传统名字扬库尼著称,他出生于瓦尔芒(土耳其溪)西南的贝德福德唐斯牧场(Bedford Downs Station)。像众多同代的土著民一样,他从自己的出生地继承了姓氏。根据各种记载,他的教名培迪·奎尔特(Paddy Quilty)是养牛场经理取的。贝德福德的个人史充满了土著人和白人社会之间在多方面接触时的各种消极面。还是孩子的时候,他在格老林威尔(Greenvale)和弓河(Bow River)养牛场打工,后去贝德福德唐斯养牛场谋生,换来的定量供应常常包括面粉、茶叶、糖、烟草和毯子。


    1990年代末,贝德福德在吉尔拉旺艺术中心(Jirrawun Arts)开始绘画生涯,此时他已经是资深的文化领袖和执法人,因此在使用视觉形式描绘自己的文化传统方面颇具功力。典型地,通过减少地貌特征的再现,贝德福德的画作不是描绘而是影射某事件。创作于2000年的《中间烙印》涉及一个叫布农古维尔林(Boonoonggoowirrin)(中支小溪[Middle Branch Creek])的地方,该地属于一个叫希尔·谷安(Hill Goanna)的祖先,在澳洲盲曹(梦幻)故事中,他被觊觎其土地的欧夜鹰和蝙蝠追逐。

    Franchesca Cubillo

    Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra