Myra Nungarrayi Herbert (Patrick)
Myra was born at Willowra c.1946. Her country is Wirliyajarrayi (Two Feet), which is the Warlpiri name for Willowra. She paints Mala, Juwurrpa, Ngatijirri (Bush Budgerigar), Witi/kurlarda (Spear/Pole) – from Kurlangalimpa (Duck Pond), Jurdiya (Snake), Ngalyipi (Snake Vine), Jurlpa (Butcher Bird), Jurlpa (Small Barn Owl), Malu (kangaroo) Witi (Ceremonial Pole), Bush Vine, Snake and Cockatoo, Watiya and Karrkarrdu (Cockatoo) Dreamings, some of these were conjunction with her late husband, Freddy Patrick Jangala – they often painted sitting down together, though mostly they do separate paintings. She is a senior law lady in Lajamanu.
Myra Patrick commenced painting in 1986 during the Traditional Painting Course initiated by the T.A.F.E. Unit in Lajamanu. Her approach to depicting Jukurrpa (Dreaming) in her painting was diametrically different to other Lajamanu artists. Her early work is immediately identifiable by her minuscule dots, which were part of Myra’s conscious development of her individualistic style. Her work is like pointillism but has asymmetrical qualities that distinguish it from pop art. She has worked these effects on pottery for an exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria in 1990. Minute dots are now a familiar technique, but few have used them with such subtle refinement. She collects tiny twigs and sharpens them to do the dots. Minute dots are now a familiar technique, but few have used them with such subtle refinement. She collects tiny twigs and sharpens them to do the dots.
Myra Patrick also made some pottery and sometimes collaborated on her husband's paintings, Freddy Jangala Patrick (now deceased).
In recent years she has decided to use her father's family name Herbert. Myra's father was born in Yinipaka so this is where her dreamings come from.
In 2018 Myra was selected to participate in Parrtjima, an indigenous light festival in Alice Springs. Her paintings were translated into visual light projections and a collaborative installation of sounds and sights of the budgerigar.
By the early ’90s Myra had developed RSI from painting, and was told to quit, but refused to. As a result she changed her painting style
Gallery of Victoria in 1990. A Botany glass factory has also signed a contract with Myra Patrick and Marjorie Watson to blow their designs into glass.
Myra has been a key player in all of the Tracks and Lajamanu collaborations, as well as performing in many of the company’s productions. As a senior law woman of Lajamanu, Myra is a key cultural adviser to Tracks when it comes to women’s business.