APR 25|3 min read
At Home with Adairs: behind the designs, inspiration, and collaborations with our favourite artists.
Introducing our new Aboriginal artist collaboration, inspired by sisterhood, family, motherhood & home.
Cungelella Art - pronounced Cun-gel-lul-lah - is a collaborative project between Kalkadoon sisters Glenda, Jaunita, Dale and Cheryl. Inspired by calmness, Country and most importantly, family, their artwork creates a legacy through storytelling and sharing.
We spoke to the sisters about their creative process and the meaning behind each of the four artworks that are featured in the Cungelella Art x Adairs Collaboration.
What does it mean to you to carry on the tradition of creating art like the rest of your family have?
We love that we can continue with what our families have done forever. We feel a responsibility to teach art so that our children know where they come from, what we and our parents have done, and to show them that they can do it too. We like that our kids really know their culture.
Can you tell us a bit about your creative process and how you all work together collaboratively?
We start with cutting canvas, then we'll come in and paint a background and let that dry. Sometimes we'll paint a few different backgrounds (which only take five minutes to dry out here in the summer), if we know we have a few busy days ahead - so that when we have time to paint, we can just come and start it.
It's chaos when we paint; one of us is cutting canvas, someone else is mucking around with colour and then the kids are trying to steal paint bottles off you!
We each have different artistic styles so we can all tell who's done each painting; who's started and who’s done the most of it.
Can you tell us about the meaning behind each of the artworks?
Meaning baby, the Bilabila (pronounced bill-a-bill-a) design is inspired by the sparkling eyes of children and gathering beneath a Gidgee tree.
Meaning Kalkadoon Country, the Kalkatungu (pronounced kalka-tun-goo) design is inspired by the blooming desert colours of the land.
The Wadjin (pronounced wad-jun) design means spinifex and is inspired by the native plants that grow in abundance on the ridges and plains of our Kalkadoon home.
The Kids design features a rainbow, which is a sign of hope, and bright night stars that can only be seen when camping out bush. Meaning morning star, the Marapurthangkali (pronounced mara-put-tung-kali) design is inspired by the warmth of mother-love and the golden glow of a dawning day.