The Art of Eddie Burrup
1940s — 2000, a continuum
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The extensive body of work, visual and written, created between the years 1994 and 2000 that comprises The Art of Eddie Burrup is the final phase in the evolution of Elizabeth Durack’s oeuvre. In spirit and purpose it aligns with all that came before; it can be traced back some 60 years. It was nascent in the 1930s and probably first emerged in recorded visual form via The Whirlwind drawings and paintings of 1940–41. Towards the end of her life — through her daemon, Eddie Burrup — Elizabeth Durack distilled a lifetime of living and learning, of giving and taking, of exploring, reflecting upon and of recreating lost worlds of an ancient culture. Her art is homage to this culture. It also honours and fulfills an exceptional talent.
- The coming of gudea
- mixed media on linen
- diptych, each 188 x 92 cm
- exhibited: Durack Gallery Broome, July 1997
- private collection, Melbourne
- Eddie's title
One for early days —
where Allabout see'm gudea first time —
'e make'm cobber–cobber, big one,
an' 'e run that song all a'way round.
Gudea 'e comin' up from south
an' 'e move allalong.
My ol' Daddy got'm when he bin only little boy,
News of the coming of strangers and stranger creatures preceded them and passed into art, dance and theatre. Many accounts of the first sightings of horsemen have been recorded.
For example, in When the Dust Comes In Between (1982) Bruce Shaw records:
"When we saw horses a long, long time ago, when I was on'y kid — we didn't know. I saw a man come on a horse and reckoned the horse was a devil ... I was going to take a spear, want'a kill that horse — you can't tell a silly boy like — we bin on'y myall that time ..."