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Association of the Northern, Kimberley and Arnhem Aboriginal Artists


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Association of The Northern, Kimberley and Arnhem Aboriginal Artists; Arnhem, Northern and Kimberley Artists Aboriginal Corporation; Art, Australian; Aboriginal Australians; Aboriginal Artists; Periodicals

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Association of the Northern, Kimberley and Arnhem Aboriginal Artists

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Arts backbone


volume 14 issue 1, August 2014

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Association of the Northern, Kimberley and Arnhem Aboriginal Artists



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Joonba, Junba, Juju: Song and Dance Cycles of the Kimberley By Esther Gyorki, Gallery Coordinator, Warmun Art Centre In Gija and Miriwoong languages the word is Joonba. In Ngarinyin language, Junba and in Bunuba country it is Juju. Bringing together different countries and language groups from across the Kimberley, Joonba, Junba, Juju is part of a gradually unfolding project developed by Mangkaja, Mowanjum, Waringarri and Warmun Art Centres. This revival has strengthened these song and dance cycles in the region. At the heart of this project is the concept of sharing and exchange wirnan/wunan the sharing of performance, of knowledge, of objects. The exhibition, Joonba, Junba, Juju: Song and Dance Cycles of the Kimberley, includes a unique collection of photography, video and objects associated with the performances, such as masks, painted dance boards, spears and thread-cross totems. It pairs these objects with videos of the performances, as well as discussion by the custodians of these corroborees. This allows nonIndigenous Australians to understand more about the traditions of Aboriginal culture and giving the younger generations of Indigenous Australians a modern means of relating to the stories of the elders. Top left: Jowari Junba performance Gooniyandi dancers: Fabian Davis, Jai Cherel, Gilbert Cox, Johari Dick, Ty Murray Photo: Mangkaja Arts Resource Agency Top: Front cover of the Joonba, Junba, Juju Catalogue. Downloadable here: www.warmun. gfcomms.com.au/wordpress/wp-content/ uploads/2014/05/here.pdf Photo: Mowanjum Arts and Culture Centre Bottom left: Dougie Macale performs Goorirr Goorirr Photo: Alana Hunt, courtesy of Warmun Art Centre Above: Joonba, Junba, Juju exhibition at TactileArts, Darwin Photo: Warmun Art Centre When it comes to our law, culture, country and language Gija people know what is right from what is wrong. Everything from the Ngarranggarni (Dreaming) to real life events are kept alive in our traditional archives, and that archive is our joonba. Gabriel Nodea , ANKAAA Deputy Chair and Warmun Arts Centres Cultural Liaison Officer. Gija Media Trainee at Warmun Art Centre Nancy Daylight explains: With the video, we can record and memorise how they dance and paint. When old people talk in language, we only know a little bit. But when we put it in English at the bottom in a subtitle, we understand the whole story. Joonba, Junba, Juju was on show at TactileArts, Darwin, 9 August 1 September 2013, and UTS Gallery, Sydney, 29 April 23 May 2014. Joonba, Junba and Juju are three names from the Kimberley Aboriginal languages given to a specific form of performance driven by narrative. Above: Gabriel Nodea performs Binyjirrminy Photo: Alana Hunt, Warmun Art Centre 6 Arts BackBone eXHIBITIonS Volume 14: Issue 1, August 2014 Volume 14: Issue 1, August 2014 eXHIBITIonS Arts BackBone 7