Aboriginal Dot Paintings from Central Australia

Based around rich Dreamtime traditions, each of our artists’ Aboriginal dot paintings represents a traditional story that showcases the diverse Indigenous cultures. Many Aboriginal nations originated in Australia’s deserts, and so the dot paintings represent the desert life and culture.

The Dreamtime stories, spanning at least forty thousand years into Indigenous history, represent the intersection of humanity, the physical world and the sacred. Shared with voice, not writing, the stories surround the origins of life, from the native animals – the eagle, kangaroo, lizard and dingo – to the topography of the earth. They tell us why the world looks the way it does, with its rolling hills and expansive lakes. They tell of the natural laws, which underpin humanity’s survival.

Having learnt the traditions of the style through extended practice, each artist is acclaimed throughout the world for their technique and precision at bringing the spoken Dreamtime stories to life. The artists represented by AAIA are well versed in the Dreamtime tradition of storytelling, drawing its rich influences into their dot paintings. Each showcasing a story from an Aboriginal culture, the paintings are a beautiful insight into an ancient art form.

Technique of the dot paintings

Traditionally, dot paintings were completed using ochre, a clay-based material dug from the earth. However modern painting techniques see the artists using acrylic paints. Readily available, acrylics allow for a rich representation of the artist’s message, with so many shades and colours available for use.

The canvases vary extensively, with some demonstrating perfect precision and miniscule dots. Others are strewn with a cacophony of larger dots, seemingly placed haphazardly over the canvas, expressing the emotions of its artist. This latter style is typical of older Aboriginal artists who follow a relaxed and painterly style.

Contact us to discuss your art purchase

To discuss your upcoming acquisition of a rich piece of Aboriginal art, contact our consultants, Phil and Rose Hall, located in Darwin. With more than two decades of experience in the industry, they are proud to be located near the country’s major Aboriginal art centres, to bring you a stunning and culturally indicative art piece.