Ivan Panka (or Pannka) developed his own stylised nature-based patterning in which negative spaces in the sky were an interesting part of the composition design system. Ivan Panka was active in the 1960s and 1970s but although talented, was not a prolific artist. Ivan seems to have started to paint around 1960 and possibly continued throughout the 1970s to around 1980.
Ivan Panka treated the sky as a special part of the design space. He created interesting negative spaces in the sky to emphasise his interpretation of the country. He romanticised scenes with unusual colour systems.
The brothers Claude Panka (or Pannka) (1928-72), Nelson (1935-71) and Ivan (born 1943) were the sons of Anthapa and Sandra (nee Panka) Emitja. Claude’s surname appears as Emitja on certain documents such as the Northern Territory Nominal Roll. They were of the Loritja language group, Kemarre Subsection (Skin). Claude’s daughter Gloria is an artist continuing the Hermannsburg watercolour school. They are all of the Loritja people and originated from Tempe Downs south of Hermannsburg.