Anna Price Petyarre (Pitjara) - BUSH YAM SEEDS AP1770

Anna Price Petyarre (Pitjara) Bush Yam Seeds Australian Aboriginal Art Painting on canvas AP1770


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Artist: Anna Petyarre
Skin Name: Petyarre, Pitjara
Born: c.1965
Region: Utopia
Language: Anmatyerre
Subjects and Themes(Dreaming): Bush Yam Dreaming, Bush Yam Seed Dreaming, Wild Potato, Wild flowers, Women's Ceremonial Designs, Emu, My Country.



Anna Price Petyarre was born c. 1965 on Utopia Station, north east of Alice Springs, in Anmatyerre country and she is

the daughter of a well respected artist Glory Ngarla. Glory Ngarla is well known for her batik work at Utopia. Anna has also worked with the Utopia batik group at a young age in the 1980's.

Anna depicts the Bush Yam, Bush Yam Seed and Salt Lakes or MY Country stories. These are the Dreamings of her grandfather and father's country from the Boundary Bore region. 
At first Anna Petyarre used very bright colours with minimal dotting and the last 10 years her creativety and talant made her change her painting style radically and now Anna's works illustrate a technique of intricate dot work, with small amount of colour.

An award winning artist, she is represented in many galleries and collections.


  • 2002 Glen Eira City Gallery, Melbourne
  • 2002 Hogarth Galleries, Sydney
  • 2002 Galerie Le Temps du Reve, France
  • 2001 Raintree Aboriginal Art Gallery, Darwin
  • 2001 Japingka Gallery, Perth
  • 2001 "Women's Business", Australian Exhibition Centre, Chicago, USA
  • 2000 Dacou (in association with AMP), Mary Place Gallery, Sydney
  • 1999 BMG Art, Adelaide
  • 1999 2000 Tandanya, Adelaide
  • 1998 Selected entrant for the 15th NATSIAA
  • 1998 Quadrivium Gallery, Sydney
  • 1997 Sutton Gallery, Melbourne
  • 1997 Dacou Gallery, Adelaide
  • 1996 "Utopia Dreaming", Soho Gallery, Sydney


  • Art Bank, Sydney
  • Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
  • Power House Museum, Sydney
  • The Holmes a Court Collection, Perth
  • Anthropology Art Museum, Perth
  • Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin
  • The Kerry Stokes Collection

Anna's paintings have been collected widely by private and corporate foreign collectors in the USA, Singapore, United Kingdom, India, Poland, Denmark, Germany and France.

SOURCE: Birnberg, M & Kreczmanski, JB 2004, Aboriginal artists dictionary of biographies: Western Desert, Central Desert and Kimberley Region, 1st edn., JB Publishing, Marleston.

This painting depicts the seed ( looping pattern) of the Bush yam plant. This was once an important food source for the Anmatyerre people of Utopia in Central Australia. The Yam plant is a significant totem and certain people who own this Dreaming celebrated it in their Awelye ceremonies.

The Aboriginal women would gather the seeds, then crush and grind them into a thick paste to make bread. In years past, grass seeds were collected in a most unusual way. Because seeds ripened at different stages, many would fall to the ground and be covered by sand, lost from view. Ingeniously the Aboriginal women would look for the nesting site of a particular ant species that they knew collected the seeds, eating a certain portion before discarding the rest in a pile outside the nest. Once the nest was found the women were able to collect the cast off seeds more easily.


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