Pedro Wonaeamirri

2 AM 5217/07
Pedro Wonaeamirri Wa-ai (Bima) 2007
Natural ochres & cockatoo feathers on ironwood
73cm
$7400

Wai-ai (Bima) was the wife of Purukapali, the first Tiwi to perform the pukumani (funeral) ceremony (for his deceased son). While gathering bush tucker Wai-ai was enticed into the trees to make love with her brother-in-law, Taparra. She left her baby son Jinani in the shade, but was away for so long that he perished from heatstroke. Her husband, enraged and devastated, fought Taparra, who flew away and became the moon. Wai-ai became the curlew bird, forever crying out her grief in the dusk.

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