DETAIL : Jimmy BAKER 'Katatjita' 2006 synthetic polymer paint on canvas, Courtesy of Marshall Arts Aboriginal Fine Art Gallery, � Jimmy Baker
Gordon HOOKEY | A painting for the underdawg

HOOKEY, Gordon
Australia 1961
A painting for the underdawg 2005
oil on canvas
133.0 (h) x 250.0 (w) cm
Purchased 2005
NGA 2005.613
© Gordon Hookey

This large-scale canvas replete with a kaleidoscopic palette of primary colours: red, blue and yellow, is combined with overlaid orange text:

I used to chase cars

They said if I caught one

I would not know what to do with it

F F F Fuck ‘EM

I juss wanna

Prove ‘em Wrong

The canvas resembles a comic-book storyboard: a grinning, sunglasses-clad dingo (Hookey’s alter-ego) takes centre stage in a vignette-like portal. Above the canine in the top left-hand corner of the canvas, a speeding, shiny, flash, red car – emblazoned with ‘Flamin’ Jaffa’ (an Indigenous colloquial term for any fast red car, filled with dark/chocolate-skinned people) – is skimming across the road’s surface, the dingo at the wheel and two comely young Aboriginal women in the back seat. The car is travelling so fast that the roadside markers fly off in the car’s wake, and musical notes and empty VB stubby bottles are left in the vehicle’s jet stream.