**Originally Listed At $400**
James Yulidjirri (Australian Aboriginal, Contemporary), "Crocodile and Lilies" Acrylic on Arches Artist's Board, painted December 8, 2001. A large-scale painting in James Yulidjirri's modern yet traditional style grounded in Aboriginal rock and bark painting traditions. The composition depicts a crocodile across the diagonal and in composite profile so as to present all four limbs as seen from above, but the head and body are in profile so that we can appreciated its ridged back and tooth-filled snout. Flanking the reptile are abstract lilies. Accompanying the painting is a photograph of Yulidjirri holding this work. Size: 20.75" W x 29.75" H (52.7 cm x 75.6 cm)
Aboriginal paintings of the crocodile - popular in Aboriginal communities in Kimberley, Northern Territory, Arnhemland, Queensland and island communities off the North coast of Australia - signify the Aboriginal people's co-existence with the animal world. In addition, crocodiles play a significant role in the Dreaming Creation stories. One traditional legend tells about the origin of the crocodile's skin patterns. A reputable fisherman was taunted by jealous men of his tribe. In an attempt to kill him, they tossed a fishing net over him, tied him up, and threw him into the river. In a passionate display of grief and horror, his wife wrapped herself in a fishing net and drowned herself in the same river. The couple came together and transformed into the saltwater crocodile with skin that still has the pattern from the netted bodies of the husband and wife.
Provenance: private Australia collection, painted at the owner’s home in Darwin, Australia and accompanied by a photograph of the artist with his work which was taken when the painting was completed - The artist is from the Kunwinjku clan of Kakadu, part of the oldest continuous culture on earth - estimated at 60,000 years.
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Excellent. "No. 62 James 8/12/01" handwritten on the verso.