Teddy Jakamarra Gibson was born in the late 60’s in Yuendumu, a remote Aboriginal community located 290km north-west of Alice Springs in the NT of Australia.
He is the son of Nancy Napanangka Gibson, a respected artist who also paints with Warlukurlangu Artists. Teddy has two sisters and two brothers.He attended the local school in Yuendumu and in his late teens moved to Nyirripi, an Aboriginal community 160km north-west of Yuendumu , wtih this mother.Teddy is married to Gayle Napangardi Gibson and they have three daughters and five grandchildren.Teddy Jakamarra has been painting with the Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed art centre located in Yuendumu, since 2006.Warlukurlangu makes regular visits to Nyirripi to drop off canvas, paint and brushes for the artists, and to collect finished artwork.He paints his Jukurrpa stories, Dreamings from his father’s side. In particularly, he paints dreamings that are related directly to his land; its features; and the plants & animals that inhabit it.This is located west of Nyirripi in the ‘tali’ sandhill country close to the Gibson Desert, and south of Lake McKay.Teddy uses an unrestricted palette to develop a modern interpretation of his traditional culture, building on traditions that stretch back at least fifty milennia.When Teddy is not painting he likes to go hunting with his family. He especially likes to go hunting for goanna and honey ants.
This particular site of Yankirri Jukurrpa, (emu dreaming) is at Ngarlikurlangu, north of Yuendumu.The ‘yankirri’ travelled to the rockhole at Ngarlikurlangu to find water.This Jukurrpa story belongs to Jangala/Jampijinpa men and Nagala/Nampijnpa women.In contemporary Walpiri paintings traditional iconography is used to represent the Jukurrpa, associated sites and other elements. Emus are usually represented by their ‘wirliya’ (footprints), arrow-like shapes that show them walking around Ngarlikurlangu eating ‘yakajirri’ (bush raisin). In the time of the Jukurrpa there was a fight at Ngarlikiurlangu between a ‘yankirri’ ancestor and Wardilyka (Australian bustard) ancestors over sharing the ‘yakajirri’.There is also a dance for this Jukurrpa that is performed during initiation ceremonies.