Yukuwa is one of the artist‘s names and the topic of this work. It is almost a self-portrait. This work is a reference to Yirritja renewal ceremony, which is by definition a shared communion of Yirritja moiety clans, which does not relate to circumcision or mortuary rites.
There are relationships between Yirritja moiety clans that are renewed through Yukuwa ceremony at particular sites and which relate to the ritual exchange of sacred objects, song and dance. Yukuwa is a yam whose annual reappearance is a metaphor for the increase and renewal of the people and their land.
Traditionally, the invitation to such a ceremony is presented as an object in the form of a yam with strings emanating from it with feathered flowers at the end. This is a suggestion of the kinship lines that tie groups together.
– Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre
Natural pigments on eucalyptus bark
69 11/16 × 17 11/16
177 × 45
Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College. Gift of Will Owen and Harvey Wagner. 2014.77.5.
About The Artist(s)
Djirrirra Wunuŋmurra assisted her father, Yaŋgarriny Wunuŋmurra, and her brother Nawurapu Wunuŋmurra on their paintings before being granted permission to paint by her father. In 2008, she was winner of the TOGART Northern Territory Contemporary Art Award, and in 2012, she received the bark painting prize at the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards.
Australian Parliament House Collection
Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection of the University of Virginia
Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory