Juluwarlu Yarndu Wangka
THE JULUWARLU STORY
Juluwarlu Art Group is a collective of Yindjibarndi artists who celebrate Yindjibarndi Country, culture and language through a diverse range of artistic practices. The collective is based in Ieramagadu (Roebourne), a town of approximately 900 people which is located in the remote north-western Pilbara region of Western Australia, while the ancestral homeland of the artists, Yindjibarndi Country, surrounds the nearby Millstream Tablelands and Fortescue River area.
The art group is part of Juluwarlu Group Aboriginal Corporation (JGAC), an Aboriginal owned and governed organisation that is dedicated to preserving, recording and promoting the culture of Yindjibarndi people. JGAC’s work spans multiple platforms, and includes an archive that is nationally-recognised, broadcast media, language preservation, cultural mapping, documentary production, on-Country trips and, more recently, art-making.
Juluwarlu Art Group was established in 2016 in response to requests from members of the Yindjibarndi community who saw the potential of art as a way of further sharing and protecting Yindjibarndi stories, culture and language. Juluwarlu Art Group now provides significant support and services to over 30 artists, offering opportunities for skills development and enabling them to share their artworks and stories with a wider audience, thereby earning an income while expressing, maintaining, and celebrating Yindjibarndi culture. While predominantly working within the practice of acrylic painting on canvas, Juluwarlu artists have become known for their diverse art practices, which also include carved yarranga marni boards and scratchboards, wooden artefacts, fibre works, jewellery, and works on paper.
“Here at Juluwarlu, it’s always been our passion to teach the next generation, because they [the Elders] gave it to us for that reason. So we’re using any media form: digital media, sculpture, anything to do with art, canvas, we’re putting it out there to teach Yindjibarndi culture. And if that’s the way to go for the next generation to learn my culture, or learn our culture, it’s important that we keep doing that.” Lorraine Coppin, CEO
THE IMPORTANCE OF CONNECTING with COUNTRY
Connecting to Yindjibarndi Country is at the core of everything we do, and we sustain our culture and our Country through this connection. Not only do on-Country trips provide our artists with endless inspiration, but they also allow important cultural knowledge to be passed down from generation to generation. We record and preserve this knowledge not just through out art but also through photographs, film, writing, song, spoken narratives, documentaries, and radio broadcasts. This deepens cultural knowledge, value, and language skills among our young people, and also promotes our culture our language to a broader audience, the general public.