Niwuda (Yirritja honey)
Binyinyuwuy celebrates the communal joy associated with collecting sugarbag (wild honey) in Niwuda (Yirritja honey) c1960. This intricate bark painting, consisting of diamond-patterned designs painted with brilliant ochres, refers to the Gupapuyngu Daygurrgurr clan of Binyinyuwuy’s mother. The hive is ingeniously depicted, with the variations in colour referring to the honeycomb filled with honey, wax, pollen, dead bees and debris. The black circle and pointed cone represent the built-up opening of the hive, while also referring to sacred objects made of painted and decorated wood or rolled paperbark bound with string, to signify honey in ceremony.
Yirritja honey bee
Yirritja Honey Bee design (Niwuda)
Yirritja honey bee design
natural pigments on eucalyptus bark
74.5 x 35.0 cm (irreg.)
Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Gift of Dr Stuart Scougall 1960
Not on display
© Binyinyuwuy Estate. Licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Ltd
Where the work was made
Shown in 5 exhibitions
Purchases and Acquisitions for 1960, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 22 Mar 1961–23 Apr 1961
Gamarada, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 15 Nov 1996–16 Feb 1997
A material thing - Objects from the collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 31 Aug 1998–09 Feb 1999
One sun, one moon, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 03 Jul 2007–02 Dec 2007
Art from Milingimbi: taking memories back, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 12 Nov 2016–29 Jan 2017
Referenced in 4 publications
Edmund Capon AM, OBE, Steven Miller, Tony Tuckson, James Scougall, Mollie Gowing, Harry Messel, Craig Brush, Ronald Fine, Alison Fine, Gordon Davies, Rosalind Davies, Christopher Hodges, Helen Eager, Rosemary Gow, Sandra Phillips, Daphne Wallace and Ken Watson, Gamarada, Sydney, 1996, 38 (colour illus.).
Djon Mundine, One sun one moon: Aboriginal art in Australia, ‘The concept of style in Central Arnhem Land’, pg. 99-104, Sydney, 2007, 98 (colour illus.).
Hetti Perkins and Ken Watson, A material thing - objects from the collection, Sydney, 1999.
Cara Pinchbeck, Art from Milingimbi, ‘Binyinyuwuy’, pg. 44-59, Sydney, 2016, 53 (colour illus.), 140.