Alma Nungarrayi Granites - Yanjirlpirri or Napaljarri-Warnu Jukurrpa (Star or Seven Sisters Dreaming)
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Acrylic on Linen
Alma Nungarrayi Granites depicts the story of the seven ancestral Napaljarri sisters found in the night sky in the cluster of seven stars in the constellation Taurus, more commonly known as the Pleiades. The Pleiades are seven women of the Napaljarri skin group and are often depicted in paintings of this Jukurrpa carrying the Jampijinpa man ‘wardilyka’ (the bush turkey) who is in love with the Napaljarri-warnu representing the Orion's Belt cluster of stars.
Jukurra-jukurra, the morning star, is a Jakamarra man who is also in love with the seven Napaljarri sisters and is often shown chasing them across the night sky. In a final attempt to escape from the Jakamarra the Napaljarri-warnu turned themselves into fire and ascended to the heavens to become stars.
Yanjirlpirri Jukurrpa (Star Dreaming) tells of the journey of Japaljarri and Jungarrayi travelling from Kurlurngalinypa (near Lajamanu) to Yanjirlypirri (west of Yuendumu) and then on to Lake Mackay on the West Australian border. Along the way they performed ‘kurdiji’ (initiation ceremonies) for young men. Women also danced for the ‘kurdiji’. The site depicted in this canvas is Yanjirlypiri (star) where there is a low hill and water soakage. The importance of this place cannot be overemphasised as young boys are brought here to be initiated from as far as Pitjanjatjara country to the south and Lajamanu to the north.
The female star Yantarlarangi (Venus - the Evening Star) is depicted in the Jukurrpa as chasing the seven Napaljarri sisters for having stolen the night from her.