Malaluba Gumana (dec)
Collagraph & Screenprint
Image paper: 86 x 58cm size paper: 86 x 58cm Hanhemuhle
This print was completed by the artist during a workshop with Yirrkala Print Space and master printer Sean Smith in March 2020. Tragically, following an almost direct lightning hit on her house at Gäṉgän she was hospitalised in Nhulunbuy and after returning home came back to ceremony at Gunyuŋara where she died suddenly. With the authority of her family led by eldest daughter , artist Djurrayun Murrunyina, it was decided to print the edition which has been signed by Djurrayun. The process used here is an initial collagraph plate which was then overpainted using a screen printed marwat (cross hatching brush) layer.
The print represents Garrimala, a billabong near the artist’s residence; the Dhaḻwangu clan homeland at Gangan.
Wititj is the rainbow serpent (olive python) that traveled through Galpu clan lands and on further, during the days of early times called Wangarr. Djaykung the Japanese file snake is a companion living in amongst the Dhatham, or waterlillies, causing ripples and rainbows (Djari) on the surface of the water.
The Galpu clan Miny’tji (sacred clan design) behind the lillies represents Djari (rainbows) and the power of the lightning within them. The sun shining against the scales of the snake form a prism of light like a rainbow. It also refers to the power of the storm created by Wititj. The diagonal lines represent trees that have been knocked down as Wititj moves from place to place.
She had said “This is Garrimala, my ngandi wanga (my mother’s place). It is a Galpu clan design. Only Dhatham is all I can paint, I’m not allowed to make the deep story miny’tji – this is only for the men. I’m not allowed to paint this because this is important miny’tji”