Age of Corrugation: Jude and Joany with kids at little Well

1987,   104 x 163 cms

Little Well is the Johnson's outstation, created after lengthy negotiations between the Central Land Council, on the custodian's behalf and the NT Government on a small incision at the north western edge of the Simpson Desert. It's tough country and the families have never been able to sustain lengthy occupation of the place due to its remoteness and lack of facilities or access to them. When I first visited, the families, led by Gregory 'eyeglass' Johnson had not long started to return there. There were no vehicles at Whitegate and the mob were dependent on the services run by Ingerreke outstation 4WDs, a subsection of Tangentjere. The latter were still constructing the houses, derisively referred to as chicken sheds by Gregory. The profusion of sheet iron awaiting use on the freshly poured slabs inspired the name of the painting. Jude Johnson is the near figure. Joany McCormack is under the verandah. Christine and Sally Perkins watch on. After Gregory passed away, visitation has been even more irregular. The younger generation are more attracted to staying in town, and declining physical abilities of those who remain alive, make the project of return trips hazardous.