Eunice PorterWarakurna & Kayili Artists
Eunice Yunurupa Porter was born at Wirrkural near Lupul on the Jameson road out of Warburton Mission and now lives in Warakurna with her husband’s family. As a young child she and her family walked the country that is recognised today as the communities of Mantamaru, Papulankutja and Irruntju. At the age of ten (approx.) she walked with her family to Warburton Mission where she was to attend school. At school holiday time the children would leave the school dormitories to travel with their families through country. “Families went in all directions. At first we used to walk to Wirrkural, my birth country. Later the Missionaries would bring rations and clothes to Snake Bore. We would camp there with the other families and go out hunting.” In the late 1960s Ngaanyatjarra people living in and around the Warburton Mission whose traditional homelands were in the Eastern Ngaanyatjarra Lands began to move to small settlements closer to their homelands. Eunice and her husband traveled back to the settlement at Docker River where she worked as a healthworker at the Docker River clinic and a cook in the community dining room. In the 1970’s, Ngaanyatjarra people from the Warakurna area began to lobby for settlement closer to their homeland. Eunice’s late husband, Mr Porter was instrumental in this action which ultimately lead the Porter, Yates, Bennett, Reid, Shepherd, Golding, Cooke, Mitchell, Butler, Burke, Newberry, Giles, Richards, Bates, Robinson, Prior and Ward families to return to the Warakurna area.She still lives in Warakurna with her son and extended family. Eunice painted a limited amount of works for the Warburton Arts project in the early 1990s and began painting with Warakurna Artists in mid 2005. She has rapidly become one of its most exciting emerging artists with her vibrant artistic interpretation of powerful Tjukurrpa and contemporary stories. Eunice is a diversely talented artist, creating woven grass sculpture with Tjanpi Desert Weavers and crafting punu (native wood) artifacts for Maruku Arts. She is also a well known dancer and regularly participated in Tjulku (ceremony). In 2000 she danced as part of the NPY presentation at the Olympic Games opening in Sydney and was one of the principle dancers for the Ngaanyatjarra Tjurlku at the Perth International Arts Festival. Eunice is a strong community leader and was elected to Warakurna Artists Executive at its inception. She held the Chairperson position at the Art Centre from 2006 to 2017. She has worked with NPY Womens Council and is a strong advocate for womens’ and community rights.