Collection Online
synthetic polymer paint on canvas, bark, feathers
110.0 × 240.0 cm
Place/s of Execution
Upwey, Melbourne, Victoria
Accession Number
Indigenous Art
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through the NGV Foundation by Dr James Rowe, Governor, 2002
© Lin Onus/Licensed by VISCOPY, Australia
This digital record has been made available on NGV Collection Online through the generous support of The Vizard Foundation
Gallery location
Not on display
About the work
On his trips to Arnhem Land, Yorta Yorta artist Lin Onus often observed bushland being burnt to regenerate the landscape and to prevent bushfires. Here he depicts a forest of eucalypts suffused with smoke and inflamed with the glow of fire. As in many of Onus’s works from 1987 onwards, the trunks of the trees are marked with rarrk (cross-hatched designs) that reflect his close association with Djinjang artist Jack Wunuwun, his spiritual father. The inclusion of bark and cockatoo feathers evokes the living things that are threatened by fire. The painting also has a personal resonance for Onus because he worked as a volunteer firefighter from 1974 until his death in 1996.