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National Museum of Australia

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Collection Explorer

4

'Mungily' by Veronica Lulu, 2008

2008.0041.0056

Object information

What

Type

Collection

Dimensions

W 800mm x H 1195mm x D 30mm

Material

Description

This painting depicts an important seed-bearing bush, Mungily (or Mungilypa), which grows in the salt pans and flats around the edge of Paruku (Lake Gregory) near Mulan. Mungily is a samphire bush, and has been an important food source around Paruku. Initially green, it then turns vibrant purple and pink. These colours depict various stages of the plant's growth. When it dries to a yellow colour, the mungily seed is ready to collect. the seeds are initially salty, so after they are rubbed out of the plant they are washed and dried in the sun before being ground to make damper (bush bread).

Physical Description

A purple toned dot painting on brown linen with wavy vertical lines of purple-lavender dots interspersed with rows of olive green dots on a blue background. The lines of darker purple dots have smaller black dots outlining each of purple dots. Towards the bottom of the painting there is a scattering of pale yellow dots, and towards the top of the painting there are a few dark pink dots. On the back of the canvas is the text 'WARLAYIRTA ARTISTS / 1200 X 800 / VERONICA LULU / 145/08'.

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..

When

Who

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