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MID NORTH LANDSCAPE

My Australian landscape painting is inspired by an area in the mid north of South Australia.

The Mid North is a region of South Australia, north of the Adelaide Plains

The Mid North stretches from Adelaide up to Port Augusta  It is generally accepted to extend from Spencer Gulf east to the Barrier Highway, including the coastal plain, the southern part of the Flinders Ranges, and the northern part of the Mount Lofty Ranges.

You can get to the region by two main routes from Adelaide, either heading directly to Port Augusta, or travelling inland towards Peterborough.

Towns of the mid north include Port Pirie, Port Augusta, Port Germain, Clare, Auburn, Burra, Jamestown, Booloroo Centre, Melrose, Orroroo,  Peterborough and smaller places like Wilmington, Appila, Stone hut, Peking and Yongala.

My Australian landscape painting is from the area around Peterborough.

South Australia’s mid north is mostly farming land, producing wheat, wine and wool. The pretty historic towns are set amongst gorgeous landscape.

The region has been extensively cleared for agriculture and only 13.1% of the original native vegetation remains. Much of the remnant native vegetation in the region is generally confined to small, highly fragmented islands in a sea of agricultural land.

Much of this remnant vegetation is mallee or samphire shrubland, low woodlands, coastal shrublands and sedgelands.

The Mid North and Southern Flinders Ranges also lie across a transition zone between the arid and Mediterranean climatic regions and, as a result, will suffer disproportionately from any shifts in climatic patterns brought about by climate change.

Mammals of the area include the three Kangaroos (Western Grey, Red and Euro), Short-beaked Echidna Pygmy-possum, Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat, Common Brushtail Possum and nine species of bat.

Reptiles include the Sleepy Lizard, Dwarf Skink, Common Snake-eye, Threetoed Earless Skink, Southern Four-toed Slider and Four-toed Earless Skink

The bird species most commonly recorded are the Galah, Little Raven, Australian Magpie, Grey Shrike-thrush, Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Red Wattlebird, Grey Currawong, Variegated Fairy-wren and Singing Honeyeater.

NGADJURI – THE ORIGINAL INHABITANTS OF THE MID NORTH

The indigenous people of the Mid North were the Ngadjuri. Their name is  derived from two words: ŋadlu, meaning ‘we’ and juri signifing ‘man’, hence ‘we men.’.

The Ngadjuri homelands covered roughly 30,000 km2. Their territory coincides quite precisely with the range of the peppermint gum, which explains why the Kaurna people’s exonym for them was Wirameju, meaning in Kaurna ‘peppermint gum forest people.’

There were disputes and conflicts between the white settlers and the Aborigines, particularly in the 1850s and 1860s.

The Ngadjuri led nomadic lives and were decimated by introduced European diseases, such as measles and smallpox, as colonizers took over their water and land resources, leading to their dispersion.

NGADJURI ART

The Ngadjuri used cave paintings, body art, and other art forms to express their culture and beliefs.  Examples of the first can be found at Firewood Creek, just a little to the northeast of Burra and Pekina Creek where there are some fantastic Aboriginal cave paintings.  Parallel lines are a very familiar theme, but the usual panoply of Australian indigenous art emblems e.g. hand prints, kangaroo and emu footprints were also used.

Indigenous Australians were not interested in “art for art’s sake” as understood by Westerners.

Art was not something that was separated from daily life and restricted to a gallery. The art they developed was an integral part of day-to-day life and would normally have a purpose.

One such purpose is thought to have been what some people call “wish fulfilment magic” – or sympathetic magic – in which the act of creating the magical work is thought to bring about the event depicted in the work. For example, a hunting scene – a common subject in rock carvings – would be aimed at bringing about the desired reality of good hunting.

There were also many artworks that were created for specific ceremonial purposes and which were not intended to last after the ceremony was over. In addition to such themes, there were also works of a more secular nature, which could be created for a number of reasons, including the instruction and entertainment of children.

Mid North Landscape

Maureen Finck

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Size: 101w x 76h x 3.75d cms
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Australian landscape painting by Maureen Finck

Oil on stretched canvas

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Additional Information

MID NORTH LANDSCAPE

My Australian landscape painting is inspired by an area in the mid north of South Australia.

The Mid North is a region of South Australia, north of the Adelaide Plains

The Mid North stretches from Adelaide up to Port Augusta  It is generally accepted to extend from Spencer Gulf east to the Barrier Highway, including the coastal plain, the southern part of the Flinders Ranges, and the northern part of the Mount Lofty Ranges.

You can get to the region by two main routes from Adelaide, either heading directly to Port Augusta, or travelling inland towards Peterborough.

Towns of the mid north include Port Pirie, Port Augusta, Port Germain, Clare, Auburn, Burra, Jamestown, Booloroo Centre, Melrose, Orroroo,  Peterborough and smaller places like Wilmington, Appila, Stone hut, Peking and Yongala.

My Australian landscape painting is from the area around Peterborough.

South Australia’s mid north is mostly farming land, producing wheat, wine and wool. The pretty historic towns are set amongst gorgeous landscape.

The region has been extensively cleared for agriculture and only 13.1% of the original native vegetation remains. Much of the remnant native vegetation in the region is generally confined to small, highly fragmented islands in a sea of agricultural land.

Much of this remnant vegetation is mallee or samphire shrubland, low woodlands, coastal shrublands and sedgelands.

The Mid North and Southern Flinders Ranges also lie across a transition zone between the arid and Mediterranean climatic regions and, as a result, will suffer disproportionately from any shifts in climatic patterns brought about by climate change.

Mammals of the area include the three Kangaroos (Western Grey, Red and Euro), Short-beaked Echidna Pygmy-possum, Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat, Common Brushtail Possum and nine species of bat.

Reptiles include the Sleepy Lizard, Dwarf Skink, Common Snake-eye, Threetoed Earless Skink, Southern Four-toed Slider and Four-toed Earless Skink

The bird species most commonly recorded are the Galah, Little Raven, Australian Magpie, Grey Shrike-thrush, Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Red Wattlebird, Grey Currawong, Variegated Fairy-wren and Singing Honeyeater.

NGADJURI – THE ORIGINAL INHABITANTS OF THE MID NORTH

The indigenous people of the Mid North were the Ngadjuri. Their name is  derived from two words: ŋadlu, meaning ‘we’ and juri signifing ‘man’, hence ‘we men.’.

The Ngadjuri homelands covered roughly 30,000 km2. Their territory coincides quite precisely with the range of the peppermint gum, which explains why the Kaurna people’s exonym for them was Wirameju, meaning in Kaurna ‘peppermint gum forest people.’

There were disputes and conflicts between the white settlers and the Aborigines, particularly in the 1850s and 1860s.

The Ngadjuri led nomadic lives and were decimated by introduced European diseases, such as measles and smallpox, as colonizers took over their water and land resources, leading to their dispersion.

NGADJURI ART

The Ngadjuri used cave paintings, body art, and other art forms to express their culture and beliefs.  Examples of the first can be found at Firewood Creek, just a little to the northeast of Burra and Pekina Creek where there are some fantastic Aboriginal cave paintings.  Parallel lines are a very familiar theme, but the usual panoply of Australian indigenous art emblems e.g. hand prints, kangaroo and emu footprints were also used.

Indigenous Australians were not interested in “art for art’s sake” as understood by Westerners.

Art was not something that was separated from daily life and restricted to a gallery. The art they developed was an integral part of day-to-day life and would normally have a purpose.

One such purpose is thought to have been what some people call “wish fulfilment magic” – or sympathetic magic – in which the act of creating the magical work is thought to bring about the event depicted in the work. For example, a hunting scene – a common subject in rock carvings – would be aimed at bringing about the desired reality of good hunting.

There were also many artworks that were created for specific ceremonial purposes and which were not intended to last after the ceremony was over. In addition to such themes, there were also works of a more secular nature, which could be created for a number of reasons, including the instruction and entertainment of children.

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