Description In 1965 nearing the end of my Medical School training I was able to visit the remote Enga District of Papua New Guinea west of Mt Hagen where I lived in a Baptist Mission outpost and for a time acted as relieving Medical Officer in the Mission Hospital. During those weeks one of the last truely authentic Pig Exchange Ceremonies took place on the small mission airstrip as about 5000 people walked in from surrounding areas and with them were a small group called the Wapi who had seen the first White Men ever to enter their area when Patrol Officers moved in only 2 years earlier.These 4 dancers are painted as I saw them and as they would have dressed for tens of thousands of years. This was not put on for tourists or missionaries. It was the real thing untainted by the modern world perhaps for the last time ever in the Enga Region.The original painting is watercolour and gouache on art quality hand made course textured watercolour paper.
David Bleakley, Sunshine Coast Member Since November 2007 Artist Statement I am an Artist and Photographer who likes to experiment in many media including acrylics oils graphics etching and digital art.
I attend life drawing most weeks and have become a more active artist since retiring 5 years ago after 30 years as a Specialist Surgeon. --------
Art was always my passion but until these retirement years it was pushed into the background.My involvement in Surgery and Anatomy perhaps explains to some extent my bias towards the Human Figure, drawing and representational art but on the other hand not many surgeons have any artistic aptitude at all! -----
I lived in Papua New Guinea while training in surgery and regard this time as the most exciting and significant of my life. Every day was rich in experience.PNG was also rich in traditional culture with over 600 different language groups and endless material to stimulate the artistic appetite.