In this work, Jakayu Biljabu transports the viewer into the desert Country traversed by seven sisters as they are chased by a lustful old man.
The epic Minyipuru Jukurrpa (Seven Sisters Story) follows the travels of seven sisters as they are chased across the desert of Martu Country by an amorous old man named Yurla. Yurla followed the sisters from Roebourne on the coast of Western Australia. At one point in the story, Yurla snatches one of the women, but her sisters trick him and manage to rescue her. Eventually they escape into the sky, taking the form of the seven stars comprising the Pleiades constellation.
This work depicts Kulyakartu, a significant site in the far north of the Martu homelands. During pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) times, Taylor and his family travelled to Kulyakartu in the wet season to take advantage of the vast grassy plains that made for excellent hunting.
Wokka Taylor, alongside his brother Muuki, was a highly regarded senior Martu man. Together, they held an encyclopaedic knowledge of Martu Country, including a deep understanding of the ecology and biodiversity of their land. In collaborative works, the brothers were known to chart the intricate network of underground waters sustaining their Country.
Taylor’s signature style featured densely layered dot work flowing rhythmically across the canvas, suggesting warm winds moving gently over sandhills or soft desert grasses. In this work, Taylor lovingly traced sinuous blue lines that snake their way across the plush grasslands of Kulyakartu, conjuring images of subterranean waters that support the fragile biodiversity of this site.
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