Puli Mankurpa (Three Rocks)

‘Nyangatja puli Ulurunya, nganampa ngura Tjukurpa pulka tjara. Kala painting tjuta palyalpai-amilapai Cultural Centre-ngka, minga tjuta nganampa nguraku nintiringkula kulintjaku.’

‘This is the rock known as Uluru, our home with its powerful Law. We do our paintings at the Cultural Centre so tourists can learn about our country, understand and respect it.’

This story refers to the three prominent land formations of the central desert region – Uluru (Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (The Olgas) and Atila (Mt Connor). They are Puli Mankurpa (Three Rocks). They are often painted as land forms similar to a map from an aerial perspective, demonstrating the artist’s intricate knowledge of the land walked by their ancestors.

From a very young age children learn from their grandparents and parents. They tell their stories using the red sand of the desert as a canvas to illustrate and explain. These stories and images inspire their art and Anangu are proud not only to make a living for themselves and their families, but also to educate their own children

Within the traditions of Tjukurpa or Creation Law are the codes of life survival skills. There is Inma (ceremony) associated with each of the stories. They are all about teaching and celebrating and through them people learn how to fit into their environment and social systems.

Anangu feel strongly about continuing to teach and learn Tjukurpa. Their art is important and vital work. It sustains them economically, physically and culturally keeping stories and traditions alive.

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