Artist Nita Ferguson
Title Tjintjira (salt pan)
Year 2022

Acrylic on canvas

Dimensions 122 × 76 cm
Art Centre Tapatjatjaka Art and Craft →

Out of stock

Nita Ferguson

Nita Ferguson was born in the bush near Kulgera. She spent her childhood with her family on Erldunda, Kulgera and Henberry Stations. Nita returned to Titjikala in 1964 and used to watch her mother carving artifacts and punu (wood). When finished they would catch the Old Ghan train into Alice Springs and sell the artifacts to tourists around the Mission Block shop. Nita is now painting at Tapatjatjaka Art and is the current Chairperson.

Artist statement

I’m trying to make it so people see more than a pretty picture with nice colours. I want them to see the salt pans I love and to see them from above, to rise up and look down. It’s a landscape of salt pan, lakes, hills and the land around them. This is part of the desert country that I really love. This painting goes all the way through my country, the place where I was born, places where I lived and worked with my family. Many people don’t like the desert country. It’s very big, hot and dry…I think it’s beautiful. When I was about four or five I used to go with my father to collect salt for the stockman working on the stations. It was a long way from the stockyard and would take all day to get there. I always wanted to go and put my feet in the water but my father would get very cross with me and tell me to get away or I would burn my feet. He would shovel up the salt from the top of the salt pan and bag it up. Many bags and bags were filled and then loaded up on the camel wagon and taken back to the station. The salt was unloaded and stacked in the meat house. After cutting up the killer they would salt the meat and hang it. This meat would keep for a long time and was handed out to the stockmen and their families for their food ration.