Menu toggle

National Museum of Australia

Where our stories come alive

Collection Explorer


Walka design from Ernabella


Walka design from Ernabella

Object information

Physical description

Multi coloured abstract design on a cream ground. The design is composed of irregular forms which touch or overlap to create and open composition that resembles birds in flight. Each form has a combination of scalloped and curved edges which terminate in points. The scalloped edges have points and purple, red and green band which follow the contours of the scallops. The infilled areas are green, deep pink or blue, all with white dots. Four are citrus yellow. There are three citrus yellow spots arranged diagonally across the design from top left to lower right. Two long, thin, wavy black lines join the spots. The artist has signed near the lower right corner.

Statement of significance

The collection comprises a broad range of objects including batiks, pokerwork carvings, paintings and pastel drawings on paper and other art and craft items, bibles and school readers in Pitjantjatjara, drawings by school children, photograph albums, videos and a small number of stone implements.

The collection is significant for the depth and range of material associated with a single Aboriginal settlement at Ernabella, now known as Pukatja, its art centre and with Deaconness Winifred Hilliard who was the Arts Advisor to Ernabella between 1954 and 1986. The collection largely dates to this period. Along with other material previously donated by Hilliard, this collection documents the history of Ernabella and the women's art movement there between, but not limited to, 1954 and 1986.

Object information

Back to top