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National Museum of Australia

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Collection Explorer


'Karli' by Pampirla Hansen Boxer, 2007


'Karli' by Pampirla Hansen Boxer, 2007

Object information


This boomerang is part of a pair. See IR 5004.0111 for the other part of the set.

Physical description

An asymmetrical dark brown wooden boomerang with holes and incised decoration. The boomerang is slightly convex on one surface and almost flat on the other. One end is semicircular while the other is a narrower rounded point. On the convex surface there are parallel longitudinal grooves covering the central section with three horizontal parallel grooves at one end and two horizontal grooves at the other. The flat surface is smoothed with two sections of horizontal grooves. On the flat surface there are five grooves at the larger end and two grooves at the narrow end.

Statement of significance

The Canning Stock Route collection is comprised of 125 works and includes paintings, drawings, baskets, boomerangs, coolamons, headdresses, carved figures and shields.

The Canning Stock Route is a no-longer-used cattle droving route that traverses the Great Sandy and Gibson Deserts of central Western Australia. Comprised of 48 wells along an 1800 kilometres stretch of track, the route links Wiluna in the south with Sturt Creek in the north and traverses the traditional lands of nine Aboriginal language groups. The route was founded in 1905 when Alfred Canning was commissioned to investigate a route suitable for the droving of 500 head of cattle, with water sources spaced at intervals of no more than one day's walk apart. Although Canning's map records observations of the land and water resources, it makes no mention of Indigenous places and their associated meanings which the route traversed. This collection, composed of 'painting stories', sculptural works and oral histories, re-dresses Canning's omission and records the impact of the stock route on Indigenous lives and country. A six week journey with traditional owners held in July and August of 2007 inspired the artworks, many of which were produced during the journey, and provided an opportunity for more than 70 senior and emerging artists to reconnect with traditional lands..

Object information

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