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Topsy Peterson Napangardi

Topsy Peterson Napangardi is from Papunya, Northern Territory. Topsy grew up with her two sisters, Denise Reid Napangardi and renowned artist Lily Kelly Napangardi. Topsy Peterson Napangardi was born in the remote desert of Central Australia 1954 and is the sister of artist Lily Kelly Napangardi Like her sister Topsy grew up learning the dreaming stories of her ancestors. It is these stories that she also portrays in her paintings

.Growing up Topsy’s Mother Easia Naparulla taught her of their stories, in particular ‘spring flowers dreaming’. It was only after the death of her mother in 1983 that her older sister Lily Kelly Napangardi shared with Topsy more family stories that had been passed down to her, including ‘Sand Hills’. Topsy continues to share these family dreamings with her children to keep their culture

Topsy’s paintings are constructed using small dots in a series of colours. Each colour is carefully selected and applied to ensure balance and continuity, reflecting the sandhills or ‘Tali’ of her birth country. Passed to her by her father the structure and composition of her paintings is quite different from that of her sister.

'I paint my father's country west of Yuendumu. He was a Yuendumu man, a Warlpiri man. Sandhills and scrub country, same as Lily, same Dreaming. The Dreaming stays the same [but its] the colours, I always like to use new colours, colours of the land, and the sky, storm clouds and sunrise and sunsets’ says Topsy.

Within Aboriginal society the connection to country is a strong bond, ensuring the ongoing health and continuation of culture and tradition. Art has become a considerable platform to continue this relationship. It is a visual dialogue that continues to be utilised as artists interpret country and visually narrate their explanations of land and its importance to them.