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Yalkoora Soak



Helicopter Tjungurrayi


01 Jul 1947 –

Language group: Kukatja, Western Desert region

  • Details

    Other Title
    Place where the work was made
    Balgo Hills East Kimberley Western Australia Australia
    Media category
    Materials used
    etching with plate tone, orange/red ink on white wove paper
    45.6 x 33.1 cm platemark; 77.8 x 53.3 cm sheet
    Signature & date

    Signed l.r. beneath platemark, pencil "Helicopter" [in another hand].
    Signed l.r. beneath platemark, blue ink "[artist's thumbprint]".
    Not dated.

    Mollie Gowing Acquisition fund for Contemporary Aboriginal art 2000
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Helicopter Tjungurrayi/Copyright Agency

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Helicopter Tjungurrayi

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Located at Wirrimanu (Balgo Hills) on the northern edge of the Tanami and Great Sandy Deserts is one of the most diverse and innovative indigenous art centres in Australia. Warlayirti Artists, the art centre cooperative, promotes the rich and evolving work of the talented artists who live in this remote community.
    Warlayirti Artists is new to printmaking. The remote location has meant little access to the facilities required for prints, despite the success with works on canvas.
    During the printmaking workshop at Northern Editions, Northern Territory University in 1999, Helicopter, together with Tjumpo Tjapanangka, Sam Tjampitjin, Billy Thomas, Eubena Nampitjin and Lucy Yukenbarri all made etchings and screenprints, while most of the artists also painted on ceramic bowl forms, under the supervision of Rose and Angus Cameron. The artists had previously been exposed to the possibilities of printmaking at Balgo by Franck Gohier and George Watts.
    Born at Ninmi, Helicopter learnt from a young age the location of water sources and how to hunt for bush food. Helicopter is a 'maparn' and people travel hundreds of miles to see him for healing. He is also a respected painter alongside his wife Lucy Yukenbarri. In the early 1990s he painted with his wife, not seeking any acknowledgement. Since 1994 Helicopter has been painting on his own in a distinctive linear style that emanates around the central feature of a soakwater. He remains dedicated to painting his country and the country of his mother and father where he lived a nomadic life as a young boy.

    Excerpts from 'Land Mark: Mirror Mark', NTU, Darwin, 1999

  • Places

    Where the work was made

    Balgo Hills

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 2 exhibitions

Other works by Helicopter Tjungurrayi