Lawrence Omeenyo, one of the community's respected elders, began working at the art centre as a painter; more recently he has expanded his oeuvre to include sculpture and ceramics. His forms are imaginative and unique and inspired by totemic figures and local animal life. Lawrence is a family man and when he's not at the art centre he's busy raising four young children. Lawrence plays drums and performs traditional dance at ceremony - he is one of Lockhart River's important cultural leaders.
Artist Statement: "I worked on the farm in Mission times for John Warby. It was Warby time ( Lockhart River missionary ). I then worked on the trcohus shell boat, lugger boat, collecting trochus every day , diving without oxygen, reefside. We bagged it and sent it down south. I changed job again, working in the mission store. Then I went to Umagico and Bamaga ( Cape York ), clearing that area for building houses, cut 'im trees and burn 'im. My cousin was a carpenter up there. Then I got a job on the railways in 1966, to build the track between Dampier and Mt Tom Price, 6 months work. Come back work Yarrabah , roadwork, dozers and everything. Went to Coen,for croc-shooting with Tom Creek my cousin brother. We went to the rivers on horseback and down to the sea , shoot 'im in the head. Paddling and and shooting, spotlighting 'im, looking for red-eye. We get skin too, down south for money. For 2 years I helped Aurukun and TI hospitals set up their supplies. In new Lockhart ( after Mission time ), I did carpentry a long while. Now I am old fella and I look after four kids, two of them in primary school and one in highschool. And I paint. I love it too."
Lawrence's work is available through: Alcaston Gallery (Melbourne); KickArts Contemporary Gallery (Cairns); Booker-Lowe Gallery (Houston, Texas).
The following works by Lawrence Omeenyo (clockwise) are:
"Ducky Boat", glazed terra-cotta pot; “Crocmen Yarning”, glazed terra-cotta sculptured pot; “Ducky Ducky”, glazed raku sculpture; “Bloke Drifting on a Boat”, wood-fired raku.
Last Updated (Thursday, 07 July 2011 11:56)