Kulilaya munuya nintiriwa (Listen and learn from us)

“Our Tjukurpa Law is all-encompassing. It was always intended to be eternal, but we know it is at risk. This is why I a documenting it now. I want to raise people’s consciousness. I want us to be acknowledged by the wider society and the government. I am hoping to start a movement of new awareness.” (Kunmanara Mumu Mike Williams, 2019)

Kunmanara was invited to participate in the 22nd Biennale of Sydney before his passing in March 2019. His vision for the exhibition was a large-scale political protest piece, working with the young men in his community to show the world that Tjukurpa was still strong, that language was still alive, and that there was much left to learn from Anangu traditional owners. Whilst Kunmanara passed away before realising this project, his legacy has been carried forwards by his community. Guided by his widow Tuppy Ngintja Goodwin and his lifelong friend and collaborator Sammy Dodd, Mimili Maku Arts has facilitated the execution of the project, celebrating the significance of Kunmanara’s words every day.

Robert Fielding and Ngupulya Pumani are two of the many great artists in this years Tarnanthi lineup. Both artists have completed their most ambitious works to date for this special event.

Fielding has brought to life the long forgotten memories of last century and beyond, exploring the layers by stripping back the present to reveal the past. Pumani's exploration is no less epic. Across the surface of a huge triptych she share and tells of deep Tjukurpa attached to Antara, a place of great meaning to Mimili.

Written in Pitjantjatjara and English, this book is a showcase and magnificent celebration of Kunmanara Williams' life and art and the land rights movement in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) lands of Central Australia.

Long before becoming an artist, Mr Williams was widely known across the APY Lands as a skilled orator, thinker and cultural leader. Creating Kulinmaya! Keep listening, everybody! was his longheld dream as it would be a vessel to disseminate his message far and wide. The book has become a thorough insight into the life of a cultural leader on the APY Lands. It combines contemporary and historical photographs with a range of Mr Williams’ artworks, and allows readers to engage more deeply with the meanings and stories behind his artwork, in particular as it relates to the long struggle for land rights on the APY Lands.

Friends and family of Mr Williams will be presenting the book at APY Gallery, 9 Light Square, Adelaide on the 19th of October as part of Tarnanthi.

© Mimili Maku Arts 2020