Mitchell Martin's - Mina Mina Dreaming
Size: 76cm x 76cm
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
This ‘Jukurrpa’ (Dreaming) comes from Mina Mina, a very important women’s Dreaming site far to the west of Yuendumu near Lake Mackay and the WA border. The ‘kirda’ (owners) of this Dreaming are Napangardi/Napanangka women and Japangardi/Japanangka men; the area is sacred to Napangardi and Napanangka women. There are a number of ‘mulju’ (water soakages) and a ‘maluri’ (clay pan) at Mina Mina.
In the Dreamtime, ancestral women danced at Mina Mina and ‘karlangu’ (digging sticks) rose up out of the ground. The women collected the digging sticks and then travelled on to the east, dancing, digging for bush tucker, collecting ‘ngalyipi’ (snake vine [Tinospora smilacina]), and creating many places as they went. ‘Ngalyipi’ is a rope-like creeper used as a ceremonial wrap and as a strap to carry ‘parraja’ (coolamons) and ‘ngami’ (water carriers). ‘Ngalyipi’ is also used to tie around the forehead to cure headaches, and to bind cuts.
The women stopped at Karntakurlangu, Janyinki, Parapurnta, Kimayi, and Munyuparntiparnti, sites spanning from the west to the east of Yuendumu. When they stopped, the women dug for ‘jintiparnta’ (desert truffle [Elderia arenivaga]). ‘Jintiparnta’ appears in the sandhills after the winter rains. The growing fungus forces the earth above it to crack, exposing it. Women collect it, squeezing out the juice before cooking it in hot ashes. The Dreaming track eventually took them far beyond Warlpiri country. The track passed through Coniston in Anmatyerre country to the east, and then went on to Alcoota and Aileron far to the northeast of Yuendumu and eventually on into Queensland.
Janyinki is also associated with a number of other Dreamings, including ‘nyirnkilya Jukurrpa’ (death adder [Acanthopis Pyrrhus] Dreaming), and night parrot [Pezoporus occidentalis] Dreaming. Janyinki is also an important location for mens’ ceremonies, knowledge of which is largely protected and cannot be revealed.
In Warlpiri paintings, traditional iconography is used to represent the Jukurrpa and other elements. In many paintings of this Jukurrpa, sinuous lines are used to represent the ‘ngalyipi’ (snake vine). Circles and roundels are used to represent the ‘jintiparnta’ (desert truffle) that the women gathered for sustenance on their long journey across the desert, and straight lines are used to represent the ‘karlangu’ (digging sticks).