Jaru Girl

River Creek and Waterholes, 2022


  • 39.99cm x 40cm x 5cm
  • 2022
  • Acrylic
  • Catalog No: JGRC&WH

For the 60,000 years that Aboriginal peoples have lived in Australia, water has played a
critical role—not just for survival in an often arid and harsh environment but also for its
significance in Aboriginal culture and identity. Water helped in defining language boundaries
and ceremonial places and also underpins many land management practices
Dreaming stories across Australia show the connection of ancestral beings to cultural stories
related to water sources. Many such stories highlight the role of spirits in creating sources of
water—rivers, creeks, rock wells, lakes, lagoons, seas and springs—and the ongoing supply
and control of these watercourses by ancestral spirits and creation beings. Adults
memorised the sequence and locations of water supplies and taught their children while
travelling along the chain of water sources