Dumbi & Ungud

Donny Nyorna WOOLAGOODJA: artist

Not On Display

About the work

Dumbi is an owl who resides in Ngarinyin country. A boy and a girl teased Dumbi and plucked out his feathers. He then flew to the Wandjina Wodjin who said he would create a large flood to punish the tribe from where the boy and girl came. At a place called Wanalirri, the Wandjina gathered a large flock of brolgas which stomped on a huge black soil plain to create quicksand. The flood came and drowned many people; those who tried to escape were lost in the quicksand. The boy and girl were safe because they were on high ground, they were taken there by a kangaroo, and they travelled on the kangaroo’s tail. A tata lizard called Gunarda warned the Wandjina that the boy and the girl had escaped. The rains and lightening started to chase the boy and girl and they ran to a hollowed out boab tree. Once they were in the tree, the Wandjina closed it up and they were lost for ever. In another version of the story the boy and girl survive the flood and mate to produce a new tribe. The Ungud (totem) snake is the one that made the rivers and holds water. If they are disturbed then they will kill whoever disturbs them.
Dumbi & Ungud
Artist/Maker and role
Donny Nyorna WOOLAGOODJA: artist
print on paper
76.0 x 36.5 cm
Credit line
Purchased through The Art Gallery of Western Australia Foundation: COVID-19 Arts Stimulus Package, 2020
The State Art Collection, The Art Gallery of Western Australia
Accession number

This is one of the prints in our collection.