We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.





Nyapanyapa Yunupingu


circa 1945 -

Language group

Gumatj, Arnhem region

  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Yirrkala North-east Arnhem Land Northern Territory Australia
    Cultural origin
    Gumatj/Arnhem region
    Media categories
    Sculpture , Woodwork
    Materials used
    natural pigments on wood
    222.0 x 12.0 x 12.0 cm
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Tony Gilbert Bequest Fund 2013
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Nyapanyapa Yunupingu, Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Art Centre, Yirrkala

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    Artist information
    Nyapanyapa Yunupingu

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Nyapanyapa Yunupiŋu is perhaps the most influential artist working at Yirrkala today who has distinguished herself by deliberately avoiding the clan stories and designs she has inherited to create works that explore aspects of the everyday and the process of making art itself.

    The larrakitj (hollow log) 'Mayilimiriw' is drawn from Yunupiŋu's 'mayilimiriw' series, which can be directly translated as 'meaningless'. Yunupiŋu has used this title for a series of works she has produced since 2009 and in which she jokingly counteracts the almost accepted convention of meaning being embedded within Yolŋu art. Indeed this is the norm and Yunupiŋu is perhaps the first Yolŋu artist to consciously eliminate this aspect from her work allowing her to more freely focus on line, form and colour. However, in doing this she refers to the process of painting with natural pigments and the application of cross-hatching, which she renders in an energetic and rhythmic manner.

    Yunupiŋu's style of painting is in stark contrast to the highly geometric works being produced by most artists working through Yirrkala today and to the tightly composed paintings produced by artists in the past such as Yunupiŋu's father, Muŋgurrawuy Yunupiŋu.

  • Places

    Where the work was made


  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 2 exhibitions

Other works by Nyapanyapa Yunupingu

See more works