Earlier this year men from across the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands came together for the first time to paint a large collaborative canvas. Each artist contributed to the canvas telling their own stories and helping each other complete the work, encapsulating their different Tjukurpa, Ngura (Country) as well as what it means to be keeping Anangu culture strong. The painting and an installation of Kulata (spears) and Kulata Miru (spearthrowers)) are dedicated to Mr Ingkatji, a significant senior law man and artist from Pukatja who passed away this year.
acrylic on Belgian linen
300 x 480 cm
Courtesy the artists, APY art centres and APY Art Centre Hub
Image Silversalt Photography
Wati tjilpi Tjutaku Tjukurpa munu Manta Kunpu alatjitu
The Culture (Law) and Country of the senior men is strong
In memory of the late Kunmanara (Gordon) Ingkatji (1930 – June 2016)
He was the watchman of our culture. He held the key and kept it safe.
He was happy and kind to everyone he knew.
He protected our stories and cared for our people, young and old.
He was our teacher, he taught us all.
- Artist Rupert Jack, with Mr Ingkatji’s daughter, artist Nyunmiti Burton
Senior Pitjantjatjara law man Kunmanara (Gordon) Ingkatji spent his life teaching people about Anangu language, law and culture. He was a well respected senior law man across the APY Lands who was deeply involved in the Kulata Tjuta (Many Spears) Project - passing on old knowledge and law to young Anangu men through spear making workshops. When he passed away earlier this year, before the collaborative painting began, the senior men of the Lands decided to dedicate these works to him:
The senior men of the APY lands dedicate this painting to our friend, brother, uncle, father, grandfather and a watchman of our culture, Kunmanara Ingkatji. We created this Kulata Tjuta installation in his memory and honor. Paluru kuwari paku wiyaringu.
His daughter Nyunmiti remembers him as a highly principled man who lived by the values of unconditional giving/generosity (munytja), always being friendly, happy (pukulpa), taking seriously his role as teacher (nintilpai), holding law strong and being a strong man (wati kunpu) and never forgetting to love (mukulya).
APY Lands men's collaborative
Pepai Carroll and Rupert Jack (Ernabella Arts)
Alec Baker, Eric Barney, Peter Mungkuri, Vincent Namitjira, David Pearson and Jimmy Pompey (Iwantja Arts)
Taylor Cooper, Arnie Frank, Witjiti George (Kaltjiti Arts)
Willy Martin and Mike Williams (Mimili Maku Arts)
Willy Kaika Burton, Ronnie Douglas, Stanley Douglas, Brenton Ken, Freddy Ken, Ray Ken, Mick Wikilyiri and Anwar Young (Tjala Arts)