Veins of the Country
With senior Gooniyandi Traditional Owner and artist Mervyn Street, the project produced a short film called ‘Veins of the Country’. The film depicts his understanding of the river and water flows, and their way of connecting the language groups of the catchment. Hub researchers, along with Mervyn Street, presented the project and the film to the Australian Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment in Canberra in February 2019. They were also invited in February 2019 to show the film at the Art Gallery of Western Australia in Perth, the University of Sydney, and at the Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (Canberra). The film was shown as part of the ‘Desert, River, Sea’ exhibition and triggered strategic conversations about the interface of water and art at the Annual Meeting of the Association of Northern, Kimberley and Arnhem Aboriginal Artists (2019). It received the ‘Environmental message’ prize at the Mud and Saltwater Film Festival in Broome (2019), was selected and screened by the Environmental Film Festival Australia (2021), and was shown at the Queensland Museum at an exhibition on art and science (2021). The film is owned and shared by Mervyn Street.
Seasonal calendar and community mural
A detailed Nyikina seasonal calendar and hydro-ecological framework were produced in collaboration with Walalakoo Aboriginal Corporation and Nyikina Traditional Owners, principally Annie Milgin, Linda Nardea and Hilda Gray. More detail on our collaborative process and methodology are included in the scientific paper ‘Sustainability crises are crises of relationship: Learning from Nyikina ecology and ethics’ in the scientific journal People and Nature.
A Nyikina seasonal calendar. Copyright Walalakoo Aboriginal Corporation.
The calendar was also celebrated via a community mural in Jarlmadangah, with joint funding from the Northern Australia Hub and Kimberley Community Grants.
Community mural being painted in Jarlmadangah to celebrate the Nyikina seasonal calendar. Photo: Sarah Laborde.
A story map, Living waters of the Martuwarra, was produced to communicate the research on the living waters model of the Martuwarra in an accessible and appealing way, including conceptual models developed to improve water governance by drawing on different ways of knowing and relating to water.
The Martuwarra story map communicates the living waters model.
Other outputs under development include a Ngarinyin language book and app.