Aboriginal Art Collection ➔ Yarla Tjukurrpa (Bush Potato Dreaming) - Cockatoo Creek

Bessie Nakamarra Sims
GVSU Collection
Acrylic on Canvas
Artworks - Height: 36 in Width: 30 in
Abstract piece. Three long, curved, blue lines run almost the complete length of the piece, they're intersected by a similar horizontal line. There are four shorter curved blue lines in the space between the ones that run the length. The background consists of various shades of orange and yellow.
Historical Context:
This Yarla Jukurrpa belongs to men of the Japalijarri/Jungarrayi subsections and to Napalijarri/Nungarrayi women. It comes from an area to the east of Yuendumu called Cockatoo Creek. 'Yarla' are fibrous tubers that grow beneath a low spreading plant, found by looking for cracks in the ground. This edible tuber grows from roots which seek out moisture to sprout new plants. The Jukurrpa tells of 'yarla' and 'wapirti' (bush carrot) ancestors fighting in a big battle in this area. The specific site associated with this painting is a 'mulju' (water soakage) called Ngarparapunyu. In contemporary Warlpiri paintings, traditional iconography is used to represent the Jukurrpa, associated sites and other elements. The curved lines of the 'kuruwarri' represent the 'ngamarna' (vine-like tendrils) from which grow 'jinjirla' (flowers). 'Karlangu' (digging sticks) are usually represented as straight lines. 'Karlangu' are used by women to dig for bush tucker like Yarla and Wapirti which are found underground.