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Every water got a song People got to tell you story to make you happy and safe. Every place got a story.
Joe Brown, Fitzroy Crossing, 2008
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Kunkun by Martumili Artists
Nora Nangapa, Nora Wompi, Bugai Whylouter and Kumpaya Girgaba, Martumili Artists, acrylic on canvas, 124.5 x 294 cm
The central water in this painting is Kunkun, an important women's site belonging to Marlu Jukurrpa, or 'kangaroo Dreaming'. This Jukurrpa is also significant within men's law and contains elements restricted to initiated men and women.
Despite the title, there are 57 named sites in this painting, 11 of which are stock route wells. These are places where the artists lived, where family members were born and died, and where ancestral beings left their power.
Two younger women, Mary Njana and Jacinta Galova, helped the senior artists paint Kunkun. As they did so, they learned some of the stories, which are integral to education in desert cultures. After completing the painting, the artists travelled to Kunkun, where they taught young women the song and dance for this Country.