Charmaine Pwerle was born in Alice Springs in 1975, and has spent her life surrounded by some of the best known names amongst the Utopia artists of Central Australia. With the famous Minnie Pwerle as grandmother, and the equally talented Barbara Weir for her mother, it is not surprising that Charmaine Pwerle is bursting with artistic talent.
It is very important for Utopian artists to continue to paint so the Dreamings are never forgotten. She is certainly one of the most promising of the younger generations of Indigenous artists, having been immersed in her culture and its artistic expression from an early age. Through her early life Charmaine was also in contact with many other well known Utopia artists including Emily Kngwarreye and Gloria Petyarre including such role models as her mother and grandmother.
Charmaine is definitely a family person: During these years at Utopia Charmaine Pwerle became further involved in her traditional culture and it was then that her grandmothers passed down many of the sacred stories to her. She lives in Alice Springs at present with her partner, her four daughters and one step-daughter. Her education has been varied to say the least, straddling the worlds of the remote outpost of Utopia, then she moved to Adelaide. At the age of 10 she returned to Utopia School for a further year, before attending St. Phillips College in Alice Springs. Alice Springs high school was next on the agenda, and after this she returned to Utopia for a few years before moving back to Adelaide again to study.
In 1992 Charmaine Pwerle was back in Utopia and working for Urapuntja Council. During this time she lived at Soakage Bore, with her mother Barbara Weir and grandparents Minnie Pwerle and Motorcar Jim. Charmaine’s career path as an artist is impressively rich with culture and expression, she will go on to fully develop her obvious talent. Her mother, Barbara Weir, is one of the most committed and productive of all indigenous artists, and if Charmaine follows in her mother’s footsteps, she too could become one of the great Indigenous artists.
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