Physical Description

A circular armband overlaid with a thick layer of natural pigment of red ochre. It is painted with geometric patterns outlined with white pipe clay and infilled with a darker red ochre.

Local Name



Kunwinjku elders from Gunbalanya in western Arnhem Land visited the museum in 2004, and this armband and other similarly painted ones were the only objects beyond the baskets and bags that captured their attention and provoked dicsussion. They felt that being painted in this way indicated it had been made for a young adolescent girl. The 'cross paint (is a) long time story' meaning it related to the story of the creation ancestors that the girl would learn details of, and one old woman commented on their role in passing on knowledge commenting that the patterning served as 'remind(ers of) the old people story. For the next time they know.'

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