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Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri, 1980

Before the painting movement began in Papunya during the early 1970s, artists such as Clifford Possum Tjapaltjarri, Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri and Billy Stockman Tjapaltjarri had established reputations as carvers of realistic snakes and lizards. This intricately carved perentie lizard shows Tjapaltjarri’s extraordinary woodworking skills.

Perentie (Lizard) 1980 made by Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri.
Perentie (Lizard), 1980, Tim Leura Tjapaltjarri. National Museum of Australia

Discussion questions

Desert lizards often use camouflage to hide from other animals and keep themselves safe.

What camouflage does this lizard have?

Do you think it would be well-hidden in desert country?

How has the artist made this lizard look as though it is walking?

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