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

Title

Buluwana

2002

Artist

John Mawurndjul AM

Australia

1952 -

Language group

Kuninjku, Arnhem region

  • Details

    Date
    2002
    Media category
    Bark painting
    Materials used
    natural pigments on eucalyptus bark
    Dimensions
    190.0 x 84.0 cm (irreg.)
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Credit
    Purchased 2003
    Location
    Not on display
    Accession number
    64.2003
    Copyright
    © John Mawurndjul/Maningrida Arts and Culture. Licensed by Copyright Agency

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    Artist information
    John Mawurndjul AM

    Artist profile

    Works in the collection

    26

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  • About

    Buluwana was a woman of Wumuddjan subsection, and one of the first people to inhabit the Kurulk clan region at Ngandarrayo. The Ngandarrayo site is on a large escarpment outlier. The camping places along this outlier are rich in rock art. During the time of great drought, Buluwana and her family were camped at Ngandarrayo. They were weak from thirst, and close to death, when the group was confronted by the malevolent gigantic form of the Death Adder snake. Buluwana tried to run away with the rest of her family, but was crushed and turned to stone. An arrangement of rocks still remains in the ground as Buluwana's present-day form. Only her head protrudes as a prismic standing stone - the rest ofher body is under the ground. Other human remains lying on rock ledges are said to be those of more early ancestors. The Ngandarrayo site is a place of great significance to people of the Kurulk and Kulmarru clans, and is classed as a highly sacred and dangerous place.

    from Hetti Perkins et al., 'Crossing country: the alchemy of Western Arnhem Land art', Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 2004

  • Audio

    Buluwana - John Mawurndjul 0:57

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 5 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 5 publications

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