Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre

Yukuwa - Djirrirra Wunumurra Yukuwa


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About this product

Yukuwa is one of the personal names of the artist and Yukuwa is the topic of this work. Almost a self-portrait, this motif first arose when she had been challenged about her right to paint Buyku, the fish trap imagery of her own personal identity. The complaints in relation to Buyku evaporated but Djirrirra persists with the Yukuwa imagery with the encouragement of her art centre. 

This piece is a reference to Yirritja renewal ceremony, which is a shared communion of Yirritja moiety clans. Yukuwa is a yam whose annual reappearance is a metaphor for the increase and renewal of the people and their land.  

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. 


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Artist: Djirrirra Wunumurra Yukuwa 
Title: Yukuwa, 2275-20.
Medium: Earth pigments on Stringybark
Dimensions: 125 x 58cm

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