Ngarlu Jukurrpa (Ngarlu Dreaming)

Yuendumu Aboriginal Community: artist

Not On Display

About the work

This intricate and detailed painting centres on a Dreamtime story of forbidden love and the breaking of social rules that dictate relationships between certain classifications of desert people.

Ngarlu literally translates as red rock and refers to Country found east of Yuendumu. It was here that a Jungurrayi man called Lintipilinti from the Dreaming lived. Lintipilinti fell in love with a Napangardi woman. This relationship was forbidden within the Warlpiri skin system as the woman was by law, his classificatory mother in-law.

Aroused by the woman's beauty Lintipilinti went to Ngarlu and made hair string for the woman. As he did so he sang for the woman and this was carried to her by a little bird. The woman was drawn to Lintipilinti by his song and when the two made love they turned into two land marks that can still be seen at Ngarlu today.

Yuendumu Community is located 280 kilometres north west of Alice Spring in the Northern Territory and most of the people on the community speak Warlpiri as their first language.
Ngarlu Jukurrpa (Ngarlu Dreaming)
Artist/Maker and role
Yuendumu Aboriginal Community: artist
synthetic polymer paint on canvas
280.3 x 397.9cm
Credit line
Purchased 1993
The State Art Collection, The Art Gallery of Western Australia
Accession number

This is one of the paintings in our collection.