We are updating our new website in stages. This page will be changed to the new design but is not currently optimised for mobile devices.
Well 33 to Well 35: The heart of Canning Stock Route country
I was born at Kunawarritji [Well 33]. My father was born at Kinyu [Jarntu, Well 35] ... Kinyu belongs to many people: from the west, from the east, from the north and from the south. These people come from all over ... This Country is for a lot of people.
Roley Williams, Yintakaja Lampajuya, 1988
Image Gallery Page Navigation
Page 1 of 2
Nora Wompi, Bugai Whylouter, Kumpaya Girgaba and Nora Nangapa, at Kunkun near Well 33. Photo: Morika Biljabu, 2008.
Kunawarritji (Well 33) features in many of the Jukurrpa stories from the desert. It became one of the main places from which people left the desert, eventually settling in communities as distant as Turkey Creek, Wiluna, Jigalong, Balgo and Bidyadanga.
Well 35 is situated at the home of the ancestral mother dingo, after which this site is named. This site is so sacred, however, that younger people refrain from saying its true name (Kinyu) more than is necessary. Because of this, both Well 35 and the ancestral mother dingo are referred to here as 'Jarntu', the Martu word for dingo.
Jarntu has healing powers, but she is also a fierce protector of her home and people. Aboriginal people enter the site with great respect, ritually sweeping the ground with branches, announcing strangers and leaving gifts of food. In return, Jarntu ensures successful hunting for her Countrymen and protects them from danger.
Jarntu is like a guide dog for the old people, a protector. It's the belly button of the Country. Right in the middle. The Canning Stock Route cut the body in half. Jarntu is like the veins of the body.
Morika Biljabu, Kunawarritji (Well 33), 2008
Nora Wompi, Martumili Artists, 2007, acrylic on canvas, 149.5 x 94 cm
This is a rock hole that was made in the Jukurrpa. These Kanaputa [ancestral beings] are the stars in the sky. The Seven Sisters are standing up as a group of trees between Nyipil [Well 34] and Kunawarritji [Well 33]. I was a little baby here at the rock holes of Kunawarritji and Nyarruri [Well 32]. I painted all the little hills around that area. In the Jukurrpa, they were all squeezed out of the soft earth. People made them.
Nora Nangapa, Martumili Artists, acrylic on canvas, 182.5 x 118.5 cm
The man who was chasing the Seven Sisters saw them dancing at Nyipil [Well 34], then they went back, flying to Kunawarritji [Well 33]. He saw them, 'Oh, there they are at Kunawarritji!' Then he followed them to Pangkapini.
The Seven Sisters or Minyipuru story is one of most important Jukurrpa narratives for Martu women. When they began painting in 2006, it was the first story they told.
Eubena Nampitjin, Warlayirti Artists, acrylic on linen, 184.5 x 124 cm
Kinyu is the one that grew me up.
Like many sites in this Country, Jarntu (Kinyu) is simultaneously an ancestral being, a story and a place. Eubena's description of having been 'grown up' by Jarntu reflects the intimacy with which Aboriginal people relate both to Country and to the ancestral beings that give these places their power.
Kunawarritji and Kinyu, 2007
Eubena Nampitjin, Warlayirti Artists, acrylic on linen , 155.6 x 80.5 cm
This painting represents the rock holes and soaks that surround the ancestral dingo site, Jarntu (Kinyu). The long lines depict the high red sandhills that dominate this Country.
Eubena Nampitjin, and Jane Gimme, Warlayirti Artists, acrylic on linen, 183.5 x 122 cm
That waterhole I paint is my own Country.
Eubena (Yupinya) Nampitjin, Nyarna (Lake Stretch), 2007
In 2007 Jane travelled to the Country where her mother and older sisters had grown up. Eubena and Jane painted this canvas together at Kilykily (Well 36). It represents the rock holes and soaks connected to Jarntu.