Part 2: Important Aboriginal Art
26 November 2014


born 1959

natural earth pigments on eucalyptus bark

215.0 x 64.0 cm

inscribed verso: artist's name, date and Buku-Larrngay Mulka Arts cat. 2178D

$6,000 - 8,000

Buku-Larrngay Mulka Arts, Yirrkala
Private collection, Sydney

Catalogue text

This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from Buku-Larrngay Mulka Arts which states in part: 'The depicted Gurrtjpi is the stingray hunted much on the shallow shores of Blue Mud Bay. It is also a totem for the Madarrpa at Baniyala as they talk of Gurrtjpi having a path of creation at Baniyala ... During the days of Wonggu the Djapu warrior (and Menga's paternal grandfather), an area in the shape of the stingray was cleared by him and others who came to country to hunt Gurrtjpi mid way through the dry season. The area is still clear today, his two eyes holes in the ground where the current inhabitants pick sand to throw in the direction of the rock at Lulumu for good luck and plentiful fishing. The stingray Gurrtjpi has been depicted in these waters. The rock at its head. At its tail Wangupini the Wet Season Thunderhead, feminine with life giving rain bearing the possum string girdle of ancestral woman Nyapilingu. It exemplifies the life cycle of the spirit changing from physical to ephemeral and so on as the rain falls in the hinterland "sings" its various identities through the creeks until meeting a saltwater tidal surge mingling to the horizontal ocean and vapourising to return again borne by the mother cloud. Getkit the Yirritja tern reels in these ocean breezes. Makani the Queenfish whose shore hugging ancestral activities shaped some of this coastline is also shown along with Garun the loggerhead turtle perhaps an analogue of the rock itself.'