Clan: Tjungundji/ Wathayn
Community: New Mapoon
I am an Australian Aboriginal, I was born in Cairns and grew up in New Mapoon community in the NPA (Northern Peninsula Area). My mother is from the Tjungundji Clan near Old Mapoon and my father is from the Wathayn Clan near Weipa. I started art when I was at school, I just love to draw. Whenever I sit, an idea just comes to me and I draw. Most of my art work shows Australian animals. usually expressing a story from my past, my country or a dream. Many of my drawings depict my totem, the fresh water turtle.
My grandmother’s totem is the brown snake, if you dream about the snake you have to tell her the next day or else it will chase you. My grandfather’s totem is the barramundi. He taught me most of the stories of our people and of the country. My grandparents told me many stories of our culture, dreaming and our people when I was growing up, and I express these stories in my artwork. My grandfather always would tell us stories about the places in Old Mapoon, and even of the story places.
My passion for my culture motivates me to continue practicing art. I like to go to our local Indigenous Knowledge Center and teach the kids to draw, and I tell them the stories my grandparents have told me.