Collection Online
earth pigments on Stringybark (Eucalyptus sp.)
247.7 × 92.5 cm
Place/s of Execution
Yirrkala, Northern Territory
Accession Number
Indigenous Art
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased with funds donated by Professor John Hay AC and Mrs Barbara Hay, 2016
© Nonggirrnga Marawili, courtesy of Buku Larrnggay Mulka
Gallery location
Not on display
This work represents Mundukul, the Lightning Snake, who lives deep beneath the sea at Baratjula, the Madarrpa clan estate. This design shows the deep water and the ‘curse’ or oath that the snake spits into the sky in the form of lightning. This work shows the sanctifying words being spat across the sky in lightning form and the lightning’s sacred power hitting the sea spray. Yurr’yunna is the word used to describe the rough waves topping the rock and the spray flying into the sky.