Don Tjungurrayi
Mayapu Elsie Thomas, photo credit information unavailable
Picture of Don Tjungurrayi

Don Tjungurrayi is associated with the important "Barking Spider" totem. Although creatures such as spiders and scorpions were not eaten by desert Aboriginal people, the importance of these creatures in the delicately balanced food chain was well understood.

"Mamaboomba" the spider was one of the first of the ancestral creation spirits to emerge from the underground in the Dreamtime world-creation period. He assumed a heraldic role, calling to the slumbering undergound spirits to awake and begin the task of forming and populating the land. The deeds of the Barking Spider are honored in ceremonies, both secular and sacred, throughout the Western Desert area.

In this painting, Don depicts the spider's dreamtime home by using the traditional concentric circle motif and dotting which is similar to designs constructed on the ground and painted on the bodies of participants during present day ceremonies. When the motifs are created, the young boys who are being initiated are forbidden to look upon or touch the images until completed. The concentric circle is the sacred site where the men perform their ceremony.

Mamaboomba is set in a beautiful hand-carved Italian frame.

$ 4800.00
Don Tjungarrayi was born 'out bush' near Yupirirri some time around 1939 and is a Warlpiri and Luritja speaker. He attended school as a boy at the Yuendumu settlement but preferred the life of a stockman and fencing contractor on cattle stations in the western desert. He settled at Papunya in the late 1970s. There he began painting under the guidance of his elder stepbrother, Paddy Carroll Tjungarrayi. He has painted steadily since then and his work is included in many public and private collections. In 1986 he won the Alice Springs Art prize. Don is married to Entalura Nungala, a senior women of the Papunya Community who is also a renowned artist.


(Click on link(s) below to see painting details.)

Mamaboomba - Barking Spider Dreaming

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Additional Information

Additional artist information unavailable at this time

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