Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre

Top End Bugi Exhibition - Garrapara - Manini Gumana


Garrapara is a coastal headland and bay area within Blue Mud Bay. It is known on the maps in English a Djalma Bay. It marks the spot of a sacred burial area for the Dhalwangu clan and a site where the dispute was formally settled by Makarrata (a trial of ordeal by the spear which settled serious grievance and sealed the peace forever). At Garrapara sacred Casuarina trees held these barbed spears whilst not in use. The miny’tji (sacred clan design) on this piece identifies the Dhalwaŋu saltwater estate of Garrapara on Blue Mud Bay.  

The Larrakitj had its traditional use for the Yolŋu of Northeast Arnhem Land as an ossuary or bone container erected as a memorial to a dead kinsman up to a decade after death. After death, the body of the deceased was often ceremonially placed on a raised platform and left to the elements for an appropriate time. The area would then be abandoned until the next stage of the ritual. 

Top End Bugi is a showcase of innovation and expertise from the Arnhem Land Artists of Buku-Larrŋgay Mulka Centre, Ngukurr Arts Aboriginal Corporation and Maningrida Arts and Culture. Presenting a series of works on Stringybark and selection of Larrakitj, Top End Bugi celebrates the creativity and diversity of bark artists, emerging and established. Connecting city and country, Top End Bugi is a spotlight for contemporary bark art, combining Top End, a collective term given to the northernmost region of the Northern Territory and Bugi, the Darug (Sydney Aboriginal Language) word for bark.  

As a cultural practice, bark art is a continuation of tradition, passing down sacred stories, designs and teachings through intricate strokes. The collection process begins after the wet season when the Stringybark tree is stripped, cured by fire, weighted and left to dry. Then using earth pigments, designs are layered, often with crosshatched strokes that speak to the cultural identity and visual language of the artist.  

Please Note: This exhibition runs from September 19 – November 1. All exhibition orders with Click & Collect will be available for collection from November 2 once the exhibition ends. All exhibition orders with shipping, will ship from November 4.

This art work is only eligible for Click & Collect at checkout. Due to the size and fragility of all Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre art centre works we will organise specialist art courier quotes and shipping costs direct with customers post-purchase. If you require shipping please purchase with Click & Collect and call our showroom team on (02) 9280 0999 to organise a quote and payment.

Artist: Manini Gumana 
Title: Garrapara, 199-20.
Medium: Earth pigments and sand on Stringybark hollow pole 
Dimensions: 199cm

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