Ngapa Jukurrpa - Puyurru


Ngapa Jukurrpa Puyurru

The site depicted is Puyurru, to the west of Yuendumu in Central Australia. In the usually dry creek beds are Mulju or naturally occuring wells. The Kirda for this site are the Nangala and Nampijinpa women and the Jangala and Jampijinpa men of Warlpiri country. The Dreaming shares of two Jangala men, rain makers, who sang the rain, unleashing a giant storm. The storm travelled across the country from the east to the west, initially travelling with a Pamapardu Jukurrpa from Warntungurru to Warlura, a waterhole 8 miles east of Yuendumu. At Warlura, a gecko called Yumariyumari blew the storm on to Lapurrukura and Wilpiri. Bolts of lightning shot out at Wirnpa (also known as Mardinymardinypa) and at Kanaralji. At this point the Dreaming track also includes Kurdukurdu Mangkurdu Jukurrpa (Children of the Clouds Dreaming). The water Dreaming built hills at Ngamangama using baby clouds and also stuck long pointy clouds into the ground at Jukajuka, where they can still be seen today as rock formations.

The termite Dreaming eventually continued west onto Nyirripi, a community approximately 160km west of Yuendumu. The water Dreaming then travelled from the south over Mikanji, a watercourse with soakages north-west of Yuendumu. At Mikanji, the storm was picked up by a Kirrkalanji and taken farther north. At Puyurru, the falcon dug up a giant Warnayarra. The Rainbow Serpent carried the water with it to create another large lake, Jillyiumpa, close to an outstation in this country. The Kirda of this story are the Jangala men and Nangala women of Walpiri country. After stopping at Puyurru, the water Dreaming travelled on through other locations including Yalyarilalku, Mikilyparnta, Katalpi, Lungkardajarra, Jirawarnpa, Kamira, Yurrunjuku, and Jikaya before moving on into Gurindji country to the north.

In contemporary Warlpiri paintings, traditional iconography is used to represent the Jukurrpa. Short dashes are often used to represent mangkurdu (cumulus and stratocumulus clouds) and longer flowing lines represent Ngawarra (flood waters). Small circles are used to depict Mulju and river beds.

Aboriginal word glossary