Birrpunu #2 Yunupiŋu
20 x 40cm Paper: HAHNEMUHLE 66 x 38cm
Lurrkun Waŋa (Three Houses) – String Figure
This print was made by using string made by Bumuti / Lipaki#1 Djulapana.
The print is one in a series of five, made in response to the collection of mounted string figures known in Yolngu as matjka made in Yirrkala in 1948, in the Australian Museum, Sydney.
Soft ground, etched in nitric acid, on zinc plate. Printed using Charbonnel inks: red ochre mixed with warm red (modified with plate oil and easy-wipe solution). Cloth wipe only. Printed cold.
Editioned by: Heather Burness, Canberra
Birrpunu is a young woman in her 30s, who learnt to make string figures when she was a child from her grandmother, at her homeland of Biranybirany. The contemporary repertoire of commonly known string figure designs and in Yolngu as matjka, while not as extensive as that recorded by McCarthy in 1948, attests to the survival of this cultural practice.
Lurrkun Waŋa or Three Houses, is the second stage in a sequence, which follows on from making gara or spear. It is a favourite of Birrpunu’s.
Robyn McKenzie ,PhD Candidate, ANU
Printed by Heather Burness, Grey Lady Press, July 2010