Buku Larrngay Arts, NT
Cooee Art, NSW
Garrapara is a coastal headland within Blue Mud Bay. This sacred design shows the water of Djalma Bay chopped up by the blustery South Easterles of the early dry season.
It marks the spot of a sacred burial area for the Dhalwanu clan and a site where dispute was formally settled by Makarrata (ceremony in which wrongdoers were subject to ordeal by spear).
Durjing the times after the ‘first mornings’, ancestral hunters left the shores of Garrapara in their canoe towards the horizon, hunting for turtle. Sacred songs and dance narrate the heroic adventures of these two men as they passed sacred areas and rocks and saw ancestral totems on their way. their hunting came to grief, with the canoe capsising and the hunters being drowned. The bodies washed back to the shores of Garrapara with the currents and the tides, as the Wanupini (Thounderhead storm cloud) following with its rain and wind. This is donated by the white field on the horizon of the work. Their canoe with paddle and totems queen fish Makani and long tom Minyga and turtle Garun are all referred to in the songs and landscape.
Makarrata, the ritual throwing of spears at a miscreant of Yalnu law took place here. At Garrapara sacred trees held these barbed spears whilst not in use.
The birds sculptures at the head of this pole are a radical innovation. When asked with the bird was he replied “Walanu’.Share