• Naminapu Maymuru White working on her etching Gunyan (Sand Crab) at Yirrkala Print Space
  • From Yirrkala/sky/night by Heather Burness, etching, 2012, 54 x 78 cm
  • From Yirrkala/ waters/sea by Heather Burness, etching, 2012, 54 x 78 cm
  • From Yirrkala/land by Heather Burness, etching, 2012, 54 x 78 cm
  • The mild steel plates immersed in the tidal flow of Yirrkala Creek in Arnhem Land by Heather Burness.

From Yirrkala: saltwater, freshwater flow

05 October - 20 October 2012

An exhibition of etchings and bark paintings by  Naminapu Maymuru White and etchings by Heather Burness

The confluence of freshwater and saltwater is important for the Yolngu people of east Arnhem Land. The ebb and flow between these waters shifts and changes through the cycle of seasons and tides. The meeting point is a fertile zone for plants and animals. It is also a phenonomon that symbolises the mediation of difference.

In this exhibition, Canberra based artist Heather Burness has worked with Yirrkala artist Naminapu Maymuru White both in Canberra and in eastern Arnhem Land. Through the exchange Heather taught Naminapu the intricacies of multi-plate colour etching and recently editioned a colour plate etching for Naminapu.

In return Naminapu introduced Heather to the cultural and environmental importance of the saltwater and freshwater flow for Yolngu people at Yirrkala. During the visit Heather physically exposed etching plates to this environment and then returned to her studio in Canberra to print the multi-plate colour etchings.

Naminapu Maymuru White is an artist and teacher from Yirrkala. Her works are held in major collections and she won the Work on Paper Award at the 13th National Indigenous & Torres Strait Islander Art Award. Her work in this exhibition shows her responses to the flow of saltwater and freshwater that extends into the sky. Naminapu has continued the long tradition of artists from Yirrkala endeavouring to negotiate the difference between cultures that continue to visit her country.

Exhibitions Archive