Your Glasses Style

Helen Dale Samson’s story behind her artwork

Since 2014, Specsavers and The Fred Hollows Foundation have collaborated yearly on a limited edition collection of frames featuring the artwork of an Indigenous artist.  

This year, artwork by Martumili Artist Helen Dale Samson is featured on the range of frames. Read on to learn more about Helen, her journey with Specsavers and The Foundation and the fantastic work they’re doing to improve eye care across Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. 

The piece featured across this year’s limited edition collection is called ‘Puntawarri’. Puntawarri is an important cultural area located in the middle stretches of the Canning Stock Route and east of the Jigalong Mission (now Jigalong Aboriginal community).

Helen was born at Jigalong Mission and grew up in the mission dormitory, schooling and working during the week, but spent her weekends and holidays camping in the Country surrounding Jigalong and Puntawarri with her extended family.

Once married, Dale lived around Puntawarri and Nguyakurlu rockholes, walking and hunting there. In more recent years Dale returned to Jigalong Aboriginal community, where she continues to live today with her children and grandchildren.

Helen paints about the old mission days and the places she and her ancestors travelled. In ‘Puntawarri’, she depicts the diverse array of flora found in the area -  the site of an important Jukurrpa (Dreaming) story.

"All around is sandhills and lakes on every side. You can see the grass, but the lakes are all dry. In the middle is Puntawarri waterhole. That’s the jila (snake) place, two jila. They nyupa (spouses), they darlings, man and woman. They sleeping near to Puntawarri. It’s a hole in the ground — that jila will come out of the ground and all the dust will go everywhere."

Helen Dale Samson
Helen Dale Sampson wearing her self designed Limited Edition Frames

$25 from each pair sold from this year’s Limited Edition collection goes directly to The Fred Hollows Foundation to help carry on Fred’s vision and save people’s sight. 


The temples of this frame portray nyalka (native tree with yellow flowers) where jurtipirri (stingless bee sugar bags) are harvested, when the tree has flowers this indicates there may be sugar bags ready to pick. These round frames feature nose pads and a green painted rim to complement Dale’s artwork. Helen has allowed her work to be transferred onto these glasses.

The frame front of these frames features a polished navy acetate plastic, and these rectangular frames will suit most face shapes. The temples of this frame portray walyji (Acacia tree) from Jigalong, a story of Martu people collecting wildflowers. Helen has allowed her work to be transferred to these glasses.