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Gracie Morton

DOB: c. 1956

BORN: Utopia, Northern Territory



Gracie Morton Pwerle is the daughter of well known Utopian artist Myrtle Petyarre, who is the sister of the celebrated artists Gloria and Kathleen Petyarre. Gracie began painting in the 1980s during the “A Summer Project”, where acrylic paints and canvas were introduced to the women of Utopia. Gracie is a senior traditional custodian of the Arnwekety (Bush Plum) Dreaming, in accordance with traditional law she is responsible for ensuring the Dreaming, customs and traditions associated with the Bush Plum. This responsibility was passed down to Gracie from her father and aunt.


The Bush Plum is a nutritious small fruit found in Central Australia, it has black seeds which are rich in Vitamin C. The fruit can be eaten straight from the bush or cooked. Growing through the winter months, when spring comes there is a great profusion of flowers and fruit, the women and children will go out and collect the Bush Plum. During this time the women will reaffirm their connection to the land.


Gracie’s primary depiction is Arnwekety, through her artwork she depicts the changing seasonal influences on the plant. With incredible finesse Gracie creates a wonderful lyricism in her artworks, causing a three-dimensional pull at the eye guiding the observer through the soft outward reaching fields of colour. Her delicate dotting style and colour variation depict the Bush Plum in an aerial perspective. She has a very minimalist style with an overall effect which leaves the canvas with a gentle and soft appearance.


Source: Birnberg, M. and Kreczmanski, J. B. (2004). Aboriginal Artists Dictionary of Biographies: Central Desert, Western Desert & Kimberley Region. JB Publishing Australia. Marleston, South Australia.

Gracie Morton painting

Title: Bush Plum Leaf

Artist: Gracie Morton

Acrylic on canvas

Painted: 2015

Size: 151cm x 90cm approximately

Catalogue number: CAA18980

Price: $8,000.00

Provenance: Central Aboriginal Artists
> Private Collection

Location: Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia

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