Judith Nangala Crispin

Today I speak with Judith as she’s just finished pushing a 120kg rotting wombat up a hill in a wheelburrow. Not for the faint - hearted but here is a woman determined to ensure the animal is respectfully interred in a hole in the ground, before it explodes. Judith has just finished making a new work with the wombat’s baby, also deceased, which she managed to painstakingly salvage from the mother’s pouch. Just the size of her hand, the wee creature is peaceful in death and about to be given new life thanks to Judith’s extraordinary lumachrome glass printing process, combining lumen printing, chemigram and cliché verre techniques. Death is not the horror story we imagine. And if anyone would know it would be Judith as she has sat with animals for days during t he process that follows life. She knows that it will be ok when it is her time to go, and we talk at length about the extreme fear people have around death and dying. “How neurotic is the idea of a gravestone!” Judith exclaims. I can’t help but agree – much better to be food for the birds and absorbed back into the earth. Descendant of the Bpangerang/Gunaikurnai people of the Murray River, Judith is both a visual artist and a poet. While she lives in the NSW Southern Tablelands, Judith spends part of every year living and working with the Warlpiri people in the Tanami desert. Together wth her beloved dingo ‘Moon’, this year the pair rode 11,000km to the desert and back, on her motorcycle. Judith has true grit and I have learnt much from her alreadyAritsts-Judith-Nangala-Crispin