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Nikita Nungarrayi Morris / Bush Banana Dreaming (1A)

30cm x 30cm Acrylic on Canvas

SKU: 1849-18ny


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SKU: 1849-18ny Category:

Artwork is accompanied by Warlukurlangu Artists (Yuendumu) Art Centre Certificate of Authenticity/Provenance

Nikita Nungarrayi Morris was born in 1993 in Alice Springs Hospital, the closest hospital to Nyirripi, a remote Aboriginal community 450km north-west of Alice Springs in the NT of Australia. She was born to Nancy Napurrurla Dickson and Hamilton Japaljarri Morris. Nikita has three sisters and one brother. Her grandparents are Valerie Napurrurla and Mosquito Jungarrayi Morris, both well-known artists working with Warlukurlangu Art Centre. Nikita attended the local Nyirripi Primary School but completed her schooling in Melbourne where she attended Warowa Aboriginal College. Worawa Aboriginal College provides a holistic education and boarding experience for young Aboriginal women in the middle years of Schooling (Years 7-10). She continues her studies through the Batchelor Institute, Indigenous Tertiary Education. She also works at the local shop in Nyirripi.

Nikita enjoyed painting at school and since 2014 has been painting with Warlukurlangu Artists in Yuendumu, a remote Aboriginal community, 150kms east of Nyirripi. She paints her Grandfather’s country Jukurrpa, Yarungkanyi (Mt Doreen). These dreamings are related directly to the land, its features and the plants and animals that inhabit it. They have been passed down through the generations for at least fifty millennia.

When Nikita is not working, studying or painting she loves to go hunting, especially hunting for goanna.


The bush banana Dreaming is the story of a fruit bearing creeper that grows up trees and produces fruit with many fine, winged seeds inside. ‘Yapa’ (Warlpiri people) like to cook them in the coals, particularly the young juicy ones that we call Yangardurrku. ‘Yapa’ also eat the small white flowers and the leaves, which have a delicious nutty taste.

One story for this Jukurrpa is of two ancestral ‘karnta’ (women) of the Napangardi and Napanangka skin groups who travelled south from Pikilyi (Vaughan Springs, west of Yuendumu) through country near Karrinyarra (Mount Wedge) to the south and re-emerged at two ‘mulju’ (soakages) at Yinjirimardi, west of Yuendumu. They were accompanied by a man of the Japangardi skin group. He would sometimes change himself into a ‘warlawurru’ (wedge-tailed eagle) and fly behind them. Unknown to the Napangardi women, her Japangardi classificatory brother and the Napanangka were lovers. They travelled further north and returned to Pikilyi where they entered the ground, creating the large freshwater springs that are still there today.

In contemporary Warlpiri paintings traditional iconography is used to represent the Jukurrpa, associated sites and other elements. A variety of images and signs are used to depict the various elements of this story.

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