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Punu - small liru approx 30cm

Punu - small liru approx 30cm

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Contemporary carvings by Anangu (Central and Western Desert Aboriginal people) are known as punu, hand carved and decorated with walka, patterns burnt into the wood with heated wire. The animals all have their associations with the Tjukurpa, the stories of the Creation Ancestors and the activities which shaped the land, the people and their Law. Many details of Tjukurpa are restricted to senior custodians and it is not possible to describe this animal’s story.

Liru and tinka and ngintaka (snakes, small and large lizards) live in the sandhills and plains country and have always been an important source of kuka (meat) for Anangu of this area. They are still hunted in the spring and summer time when they have ended their underground hibernation and can easily be tracked across the red sands.

Tjulpu (birds) take their place in many important tjukurpas of the region, especially the small green Patilpa which burst across the plains in bright flocks.

Each animal is unique, hand carved and decorated. A selection is shown.