Also known as
Aunty Mabel Dungay
Mabel Dungay is a painter whose work depicts the memories she has of growing up on Burnt Bridge Mission near Kempsey, NSW as well as the landscapes of that area. Dungay is also a weaver of baskets and bags made of raffia and other natural grasses. She is an artist member of Boolarng Nangamai Aboriginal Art and Culture Studio in Gerringong on the NSW south coast.
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Mabel Dungay, painter and weaver, was born on 13 April, 1941 in Kempsey, NSW and grew up on Burnt Bridge Mission outside of Kempsey, where she attended school until the age of 15. According to Dungay it was “because of my colour” that she was barred from entering high school. After travelling and raising her family Dungay settled in Wollongong, NSW where her late sister, Helen, encouraged her to attend art courses at Wollongong West TAFE in 1995.
In 2006 Dungay graduated with an Advanced Diploma of Visual Art from Wollongong West TAFE. Dungay paints unaffected watercolour landscapes of her home and has said that “I paint about my feelings that make patterns. I also paint my memories of the land of my home. The knowledge I have gained I pass onto my children and grandchildren to keep Aboriginal culture alive.” When not painting Dungay weaves baskets from raffia and has taught weaving at the TAFE College. She has been included in a number of exhibitions including “South Coast Weavers” at the University of Wollongong’s Long Gallery which then toured to Geelong in 2003. Other exhibitions include the Aboriginal Unit Group Show at the Karoona Gallery, West Wollongong TAFE in 2004 and Naidoc, Wollongong Art Gallery also in 2004. Mabel’s collagraph on paper, My Home On Burnt Bridge, 2001 was purchased by Wollongong City Art Gallery in 2002.