M A RT U M I L I A RT I S T S
MARTU WANGKA Martu wangka is the language spoken by Martu people across the East Pilbara, Gibson Desert and Great Sandy Desert. The language combines elements of Manyjiljarra, Kartujarra, Warnman and Nyiyaparli. Martu artists share culture and language by storytelling through their paintings, and are keeping the language strong. For sales inquiries please contact Martumili Artists. E: email@example.com PH: (08) 9175 1020
Corban Clause Williams Kaalpa (Well 23)
#19-106 acrylic on canvas, 91cm x 61cm $1,200 “Kaalpa is my grandfather ngurra (home) where they walked, hunting bush tuckers. I went there for the first time this year  on a Martumili and KJ (Kanyirninpa Jukurrpa) trip. I went hunting there, got a parnajarrpa (sand goanna). When I went there I was pukurlpa (happy). It made you open up your spirt, it feels like home. It’s got kapi (water) there, a well, jurnu (soak) and tuwa (sandhills)” - Corban Clause Williams
Kaalpa is a place of great cultural significance, is also referred to as Well 23 on the Canning Stock Route. It is a good hunting place as there is permanent kapi. parnajarrpa: sand goanna. Comes from an amalgamation of the words parna (sand/earth) and jarrpa (to enter).
Billy Yunkurra Atkins Ngayurnangalkumili Ngurra (cannibal Country) #14-563 acrylic on linen, 152cm x 106cm $5,600
“Ngayurnangalku (cannibal beings) fighting. They all come in here, all meet up here. Ngayurnangalku coming from this way [North], go in here. Ngayurnangalku coming from this way [East], they go in. They come from this way [West], get in there. And from the South, get in there again. Fighting all the way. All the yirrkili (boomerang) flying everywhere. All get up.” - Billy Yunkurra Atkins
This painting depicts several sequences in the jukurrpa (dreaming) of Kumpupirntily (Lake Disappointment) Country and the lives of it’s inhabitants, the cannibal beings Ngayurnangalku. The lake is the white section in the centre of the painting, which is further quartered by the creeks that feed into it. Including Kupayiyura (Savory Creek). In these sections, other elements of the jukurrpa intersect with the fighting scenes. Top right includes the partarta (bush turkey) and walawurru (eagle hawk) jukurrpa North of the lake Country. Bottom right includes a reference to Turnturnpa, an old woman who is not permitted into the lake area. This section and the others are interspersed by the imagery of the Ngayurnangalku fighting among themselves, indicated by their weapons flying around everywhere. warlawurru: eaglehawk. A species of hawk that is found in Martu Country and is often linked to jukurrpa (dreaming stories).
Kumpaya Girgirba Minyi Puru (Seven Sisiters)
#18-470 acrylic on canvas, 122cm x 121cm $4,400 Parnngurr, now the locale of a remote community, has always been a significant site for the Martu. A permanent water source and a site within the epic Minyipuru Jukurrpa (Seven Sisters Dreaming) story, many families would gather here to meet for important occasions. Minyipuru is an important jukurrpa (dreaming story) about seven sisters that are travelling through the desert, running away from Yurla, a lustful old man. The man chases the wanti (women) all the way from Roebourne on the west coast, right through Martu country before flying east across Australia. Along the way they stop at many significant sites to camp, sing, dance and collect bush tucker, leaving markers in the landscape along the way. The many events and interactions with Yurla chronicled through the story create a culturally rich narrative that is associated with the Pleiades star constellation. wanti: female. Can be used to refer to any woman or young girl. Often used colloquially in lieu of a forgotten first name.
Nancy Pinyirr Patterson (dec) Untitled
#11-476 acrylic on linen, 122cm x 76cm $3,200 Pinyirr was born at Jartuti. She was the younger sister of Bugai Whyoulter and the two girls grew up with many other relatives in the Country around the Parnngurr area. Pinyirr lived on several Martu communities, primarily around Kunawarritji and Punmu with her sister Bugai. Her paintings depict Country that she and her family walked in pujiman (traditional, desert-dwelling times). Painting her country made her pukurlpa (happy). pukurlpa: a happy and excited feeling. Emotions are held in the stomach or gut in Martu Wangka, as in the sentence “wirla-rna pukurlarringu” (my stomach / gut became full of a happy feeling). Translated to English, it would be akin to “my heart filled with happiness”.
Nora Wompi Kunawarritji
#14-737 acrylic on canvas, 76cm x 122cm $3,700 â€œThis is a rock hole that was made in the Jukurrpa. These Kanaputa [ancestral beings] are the stars in the sky. The Seven Sisters are standing up as a group of trees between Nyipil [Well 34] and Kunawarritji [Well 33]. I was a little baby here at the rock holes of Kunawarritji and Nyarruri [Well 32]. I painted all the little hills around that area. In the Jukurrpa (Dreaming), they were all squeezed out of the soft earth. People made them.â€? - Nora Wompi
Wompi painted the country around her ngurra (home land) of Kunawarritji (Well 33), a place associated with the Minyipuru Jukurrpa (Seven Sister Dreaming). During the pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) era, the site was an important yinta (permanent water source), where families stopped and camped for long periods each year. In 1906, Kunawarrtiji also became a well on the Canning Stock Route, and from an early age Wompi and her family had encounters with the white men who drove cattle along the route. As a young woman, Wompi followed the drovers north to Balgo Mission, where she stayed for many years. She learned to paint there with her close friend, Artist Eubena Nampitjin, and returned to Kunawarritji when it became a community in its own right. ngurra: home, camp, shelter. While this is sometimes used to refer to houses these days, traditionally ngurra referred to sacred places. Ngurra is home for Martu, is their Country that they are deeply connected to and they call this home.
Dadda Samson Untitled
#13-800 acrylic on linen, 76cm x 122cm $2,700 This painting represents an area of Dadda’s Country east of Jigalong. While growing up at Jigalong mission, the artist returned to her home Country every weekend to hunt and camp. Dada is recognised as a great authority in Jigalong and is particularly knowledgeable about Country in that area. Many of her paintings have a hovering, vibrating quality that is thoroughly grounded in Country, jukurrpa (dreaming) and history, even while it challenges stereotypes of ‘traditional’ desert paintings. tuwa: sandhill. Common landmark found on Martu Country and often depicted in paintings.
Dadda Samson & Judith Anya Samson Puntawarri
#12-1279 ab acrylic on linen, 300cm x 125cm $16,000 “The old people used to live here and work here. The road goes from Jigalong, past Puntawarri and onto Pimpi, and then [continues to] the Canning Stock Route. There is a waterhole here where the old bush people used to go to in the pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) days while they were still walking around that Country.” - Dadda Samson
This painting is a collaborative work by Dadda Samson and her granddaughter Judith Anya Samson. It depicts yinta (permanent water source) Puntawarri, a creek and lake, and the site of a now abandoned community located on the middle stretches of the Canning Stock Route near Well 17 (Durba Springs). Puntawarri is an important cultural area east of the Community of Jigalong, where both artists live today. While growing up at Jigalong mission in the 1960’s, Dadda would return to Puntawarri every weekend to hunt and camp. Dadda is recognised as a great authority in Jigalong and is particularly knowledgeable about Country in that area. Dadda has been teaching Judith to paint for a number of years, sharing her knowledge of Country and jukurrpa (dreamtime) stories for those areas. yinta: permanent water sources. These are some of the most sacred sites across Martu country, and were essential to the pujiman (traditional, desert-dwelling) lifestyle.
Judith Anya Samson EmuTracks to Puntawarri
#18-703 acrylic on canvas 76cm x 122cm $2,300 This painting depicts the tracks of a mob of emus on their way to Puntawarri in search of kapi (water). Puntawarri is Judith’s mother’s family’s Country and is on the middle stretches of the Canning Stock Route, near Well 17, also known as Durba Springs. Puntawarri is an important cultural area, east of the Jigalong Aboriginal Community. Where Judith grew up with her grandmother- senior artist Dadda Samson. Judith frequently travelled and hunted with her family in this area when she was a young girl, learning the stories for this Country. kapi: water, rain. Can be used to describe any type of water, above or below ground. Has strong cultural and spiritual associations.
Corban Clause Williams & Judith Anya Samson Canning Stock Route #18-175 acrylic on canvas, 122cm x 91cm $2,400
“Anya and me were in Kunawarritiji (Well 33) working there, we decided to paint the Canning Stock Route. [Points to bottom left of painting] Here are tuwa (sand hills) over on the left. There’s a clay pan, all the gibarra (bush turkeys) around that clay pan. The emu tracks on top going to Puntawarri, all the kapi (water) of the Canning Stock Route. There’s the paru (spinifex) all around too. Marlpa (company, companionship) we painted this together at Kunawarriti (Well 33). We was doing our own painting then we did a marlpa one. We did a marlpa one for the Pujiman exhibition too, about the Canning Stock Route. The pujiman (traditional, desert-dwelling) were going around the Canning Stock Route area- walking around, hunting, drinking kapi (water), growing seeds for damper, surviving. Walking to rockhole to rockhole. They were getting the lungkarta (blue tongue lizard) on the tuwa (sandhills). Too many stories about that area. The pujiman were walking around until the whitefellas came take them to the mission all to Jigalong. The old people they sit down and paint and tell stories of the old days and we listen and learn. They been living there- ngurra (home), that here is all their rockholes, They were there before white people came through the Stock Route, its their home for them, real ngurra. Real ngurra is where they been born and grow up.” - Corban Clause Williams
This painting portrays physical elements of Martu Country around The Canning Stock Route, including Judith’s mother’s family’s Country of Puntawarri, near Jigalong. The Canning Stock Route is the longest historic stock route in the world, running almost 2000 kilometres across Western Australia, from Halls Creek to Wiluna. It is a place where Indigenous and non-Indigenous histories intersect. Following the construction of the Canning Stock Route in 1910, Martu increasingly encountered Europeans and other Martu working as cattle drovers as they would travel up and down the Stock Route from water source to water source. The founding of the stock route saw a mass exodus from the desert as Martu walked onto cattle stations and missions. lungkurta: blue-tongued lizard. Can be found throughout Martu Country and are often hunted as bush tucker.
Cyril Whyoulter Punkulyi and Yulpu
#17-737 acrylic on linen, 152cm x 76cm $ 2,800
[Points to central oblong form] “That’s an old man with ngankurr (beard) and his brother living there at Punkulyi. They dreaming in Parnngurr area. They yapu (hill, rock) now. They been digging for water. They dug all the parna (dirt) out of the ground, digging and searching for water. They got tired and stayed there. They still there.” - Cyril Whyoulter
Punkulyi forms part of the Mackay Range, near Parngurr community. In the dreamtime there were two men. The old man was named Ngankurr. When he lay down to rest his body formed the waterhole that exists there today. yapu: hill, stone. Also used to refer to landmarks such as rocks, rocky outcrops, and hills.
Cyril Whyoulter Punkulyi
#17-758 acrylic on linen, 152cm x 76cm $ 2,800 Punkulyi forms part of the Mackay Range, near Parngurr community. In the jukurrpa (dreaming story) there were two men. The old man was named Ngankurr. When he lay down to rest his body formed the waterhole that exists there today. jukurrpa : dreaming stories. Spiritual origin stories for Martu, of incredible cultural importance.
Bugai Whyoulter Wantili Claypan
#17-286 acrylic on canvas, 152cm x 106cm $ 6,400 “Bugai always tells about Wantili because she grew up around Wantili. Her family would travel between Wantili, Kaalpa, Juntujuntu, Raarki, and Wuranu Wells along the Canning Stock Route. She paints around Wantili. She saw whitefellas there for the first time, Canning mob when they were travelling up and down the stock route with the bullock. She was a young girl walking around at Wantili. Big mob of people they been walking around there. They were travelling making the road, Canning and his drovers. They were running away from those whitefellas, watching them from a long distance. She was a teenager when she was travelling around there with her four mothers and one daddy. Her mummy and daddy passed away in Jigalong. They used to travel around in family groups, Bugai and Jakayu (Biljabu), and Jakayu’s nyupa (partner) Phillip (Biljabu). They met Kumpaya (Girgaba) coming from Kunkun (near Kunawarritji) area.” - Cyril Whyoulter (Bugai’s grandson)
Wantili is a large jurnu (soak) and linyji (clay pan) near Well 25 on the Canning Stock Route. It lies close to Bugai’s birthplace, and is her ngurra (home Country). Bugai returned to the Wantili area as a young woman, when she worked driving cattle along the Stock Route.The area is dominated by claypans surrounded by tuwa (sandhills). Following rain the claypans are filled with water, with the overflow from nearby waterholes flowing to Wantili. At that time, Wantili becomes an important place for obtaining fresh water for drinking and bathing. Wantili is significant for the fact that at this site Kartujarra, Manyjilyjarra, Putujarra and Warnman people would all come together for ceremonies. Many jiwa (grinding stones) from these times can still be found there today. jiwa: grinding stones. Stones used by women in pujiman (traditional, desert-dwelling) times to grind manyjirr (edible grains) for yampalpa (damper). Jiwa refers just to the bottom grinding stone. The top stone is called wakura. Martu women today still learn to harvest and process seed food using jiwa and wakura from their elders on camps with the KJ Rangers on Country. The stones can still be found today at important cultural sites.
Nancy Karnu Taylor (dec) Kunarra Waterhole
#18-45 acrylic on linen, 122cm x 76cm $ 2,700 Karnu was a Warnman woman from Karlamilyi (Rudall River National Park), and the younger sister of Minyawe Miller, highly regarded senior Martumili Artist. As a young woman during pujiman (traditional, desert-dwelling) times, she and her family travelled extensively in the Karlamilyi region, losing close family members at Kurrka, Nullagine and Wirtilwirtil (near Woody Woody gold mine). Karnu painted the Country around Karlamilyi, including Japarli, Yaralalyu. Jinturinypalangu and Jutupa. Many of her family members are also dedicated artists. pujiman: traditional or desert dwelling. Lexicalised from the English word â€˜bushmanâ€™, pujiman can refer to the generation of Martu people that lived in the Western Desert prior to first contact with white Australians, or can refer to the era of traditional living on Country.
Marianne Burton Punmu
#18-483 acrylic on canvas, 152cm x 76cm $ 2,000 â€œPunmu [community]- I went there when I was a young girl, a teenager with my mother and father before my mother passed. Big mob of people was there. No building, just little cubbie houses (bower shelters). Long time I been there. These here are the waterholes around Punmu. In the middle is Rawa spring, Rawa means long time. On the right is Tuu Tuu, then Jila Jila, Wilarra and Yilyara up the top. That is my ngurra (home). We grew up in Punmu around all theses water holes. I still live here with my grand kids, same stories for all these places.â€? - Marianne Burton Marianne and her sister were brought up by their father, Martumili Artist Pukina Burton (dec.) She and her father would sit down together to paint, and Pukina would tells stories about his Country. Marianne is now often found painting in Newman and Punmu with her grandchildren, passing down stories about Country and culture. Punmu is a community that sits on the edge of an important warla (lake) known as Lake Dora. The lake runs South into the area known as Karlamilyi (Rudall River National Park). Rock holes, waterholes, soaks and springs were important sites for Martu people during the pujiman (traditional, bush-dwelling) era, with many important jukurrpa (dreaming stories) chronicling the creation of these landmarks.
warla: saltlake. Salt lakes scatter Martu Country, and are often sites that contain important water sources and jukurrpa (dreaming stories) for Martu.
Mabel Mitutu Wakarta Yirajarra
#13-851 acrylic on canvas, 152cm x 76cm $ 2,000 “Yirrajarra; that’s my camp, that’s my place, that’s my Country” - Mabel Mitutu Wakarta Yirrajarra is Mabel Mitutu’s ngurra (home); it is where the artist was born and is her Country. It is a jurnu (soak) situated on the Canning Stock Route. It is a continuous source of good fresh water, surrounded by plentiful shade, which made it an important semi-permanent camping ground during the pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) era. Having walked all of this country with her family in her youth, Mabel Mitutu is able to depict intimate knowledge of the region and its features in detail.
jurnu: soak. A soak is a source of underground water that needs to be dug out in order to be reached.
Nancy Patterson Untitled
#12-23 acrylic on canvas, 76cm x 152cm $ 4,000
Billy Atkins Untitled
#16-344 acrylic on canvas, 61cm x 36cm $ 850
Wokka Taylor Untitled
#18-1233 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 76cm $ 1,000
Billy Atkins Untitled
#19-94 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 36cm $ 650
Amy French Hunting and running away from a plane in pujiman (bushman) days #14-101 acrylic on canvas, 122cm x 76cm $ 3,200
Muuki Taylor Kulyakartu
#19-12 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 61cm $ 950
Muuki Taylor Kulyakartu
#19-21 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 61cm $ 950
Nancy Taylor Karnu Januwa
#19-14 acrylic on canvas, 121cm x 76cm $2,700
Lily Long Untitled
#17-819 acrylic on canvas, 91cm x 91cm $2,400
Jakayu Bijabu Untitled
#16-344 acrylic on canvas, 61cm x 91cm $ 2,200
Jakayu Bijabu Untitled
#18-1027 acrylic on canvas, 40cm x 40cm $ 384
Cyril Whyoulter Untitled
#19-93 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 76cm $850
Thelma Judson Untitled
#18-1064 acrylic on canvas, 40cm x 40cm $384
May Burton 2 waterholes
#19-101 acrylic on linen, 91cm x 121cm $1,500
Marianne Burton Punmu Rockholes
#19-74 acrylic on canvas, 30cm x 30cm $160
Leah Robinson 2 waterholes
#19-60 acrylic on linen, 46cm x 61cm $300
Theresa Colleen Judai Untitled
#19-65 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 61cm $450
Helen Dale Samson Untitled
#18-308 acrylic on canvas, 76cm x 46cm $620
Helen Dale Samson Untitled
#19-89 acrylic on canvas, 75cm x 37cm $500
Ngamaru Bidu Minyi Puru
#15-734 acrylic on canvas, 122cm x 76cm $ 3,200
May Chapman Punmu
#17-355 acrylic on canvas, 61cm x 46cm $ 850
Nora Nungabar Kunawarritji
#14-171 acrylic on linen, 36cm x 46cm $650
Miriam Atkins Untitled
#18-291 acrylic on canvas, 76cm x 122cm $ 1,600
Betty Whyoulter Untitled
#18-524 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 61cm $ 330
Judith Anya Samson Puntawarri
#18-374 acrylic on canvas, 46cm x 61cm $ 700
Kumpaya Girgirba Untitled
#18-758 acrylic on canvas, 60cm x 90cm $ 1,600
Doreen Chapman Untitled
#16-585 acrylic on canvas,122cm x 76cm $2,000
Bugai Whyoulter Wantili Claypan
#119-10 acrylic on canvas, 76cm x 46cm $1,300
Jason Tinker Untitled
#19-66 acrylic on canvas, 91cm x 61cm $1,200
Leon Cutter & Ivy Bidu Bush Tucker
#17-1250 acrylic on linen, 30cm x 30cm $160
May Brooks Untitled
#16-585 acrylic on canvas, 30cm x 30cm $100