- Place where the work was made
Central Arnhem Land
- Media category
- Materials used
- natural dyes on pandanus (Pandanus spiralis) and kurrajong (Brachychiton populneus)
- 34.0 x 18.0 x 18.0 cm
- Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
- Commissioned with funds provided by the Mollie Gowing Acquisition Fund for Contemporary Aboriginal Art 2021
- Yiribana Gallery
- Accession number
- © Helen Ganalmirriwuy/Copyright Agency
- Artist information
Helen Ganalmirriwuy Garrawurra
Works in the collection
Milingimbi artists choose to create their woven artworks solely using materials harvested from their homelands. Many works are made from gunga (pandanus). The new shoots of the pandanus palm are plucked from the central crown of the tree. The fine serrated edges are removed by running a fingernail down each side of the frond, which is then split into two and peeled to expose the inner fibre. Using extensive knowledge of local vegetation, these strips are then dyed using colours extracted from the leaves, roots and bark of selected native plants and left to dry in the sun. Following this lengthy process, the artist weaves the prepared fibres into their desired form.
A variety of colours are used to dye the pandanus. The plant that the bright pink colour is derived from grows in the rocky country on the mainland at the end of the wet session. Milingimbi artists only have access to this plant when they travel west for funerals or other business, and there is great excitement in the studio when an artist returns with a supply of it. The beautiful green is made from boiling the ‘heart’ of the pandanus palm. The copper brown colour is extracted from the root of guḻtjiguḻtji. The yellows and oranges come from the root of the guninyi tree – harvested from nearby islands. The black employed by Rarru and Ganalmirriwuy is a secret recipe which they only share with a select group of people.
Where the work was made
Shown in 1 exhibition
Gallery 1: Yiribana Collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, North Building, Sydney, 03 Dec 2022–2023
Other works by Helen Ganalmirriwuy Garrawurra
Biḏ’yunawuy miṉḏirr (painted conical basket) Helen Ganalmirriwuy Garrawurra 2021 151.2022 On display – Yiribana Gallery
See all 13 works