Artist Ian Rictor
Title Kamanti, Miramiratjara munu Tuwan
Year 2022

Acrylic on linen

Dimensions 75 × 60 cm
Art Centre Spinifex Arts Project →


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Ian Rictor

Ian Rictor was born at Artulin, or Tuwan, and was the last of the known Aboriginal people to have remained living traditionally in the Western Desert, only emerging from the bush with his family group in 1986. Ian paints with a quiet reverence for the country that he depicts, the endless interior that makes up Spinifex Lands. Ian walked from water source to food source and beyond, this was a cultural and family existence for survival in an arid land before his family were ‘brought in’ by relatives in 1986. Ian’s compositions centre on the life affirming sites he depicts and each are multi layered with meaning. Many are surrounded with secrecy and only surface details can be recorded. In 1997 Ian joined the Spinifex painters and began painting the compositions of his country with fluency and has since exhibited and joined collections in both Australia and overseas.

Artist statement

Ian Rictor has depicted three important Spinifex sites over three separate compositions but as one unifying artwork. He first puts the intricate lines upon Miramiratjara, a significant site that holds permanent water in the form of soakage but is guarded by dangerous underground snakes. Next he places Kamanti nearby. It is here that Wati Kutjara Wanampi (Two Water Serpent Men) reside in the waterholes. And finally there is Tuwan where the Tjulpu Tjuta Tjukurpa (Many Birds Creation Line) manifests from. This is an epic narrative following the journey of a group of Zebra Finch people as they journey south to save the world from rising seas. They use their spears to create giant ramparts to hold the sea back.