Bernadine has painted the Desert Yam (or Bush Plum) story from her family’s country. The yam grows underground with its viny shrub growing above ground up to one metre high. It is normally found on Spinifex sand plains and produces large flowers after summer rain. The yam tastes much like the common sweet potato. It can be eaten raw or cooked and is still a staple food for the desert aborigines where it can be harvested at any time of the year. It is also renowned for its medicinal properties. This medicine is used to heal cuts, wounds, bites, rashes and as an insect repellent. In this painting, Bernadine depicts the leaves and flowers of the yam paying homage to the spirit of this special plant in the hope that it will regenerate.
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