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Linyji (claypan)

This work depicts a linyji (claypan) within the artists’ ngurra (home Country, camp), typically represented with circular forms. Claypans were visited more often during the wet seasons as they filled with water. 

During the pujiman (traditional, desert dwelling) period, knowledge of water sources was critical for survival, and today Martu Country is still defined in terms of the location and type of water. Each of the hundreds of claypans, rockholes, waterholes, soaks and springs found in the Martu desert homelands is known through real life experience and the recounting of Jukurrpa (Dreaming) narratives by name, location, quality and seasonal availability. This encyclopedic knowledge extends even to the nature and movement of arterial waterways, and sustained Martu as they travelled across their Country, hunting and gathering, visiting family, and fulfilling ceremonial obligations. They would traverse very large distances annually, visiting specific areas in the dry and wet season depending on the availability of water and the corresponding cycles of plant and animal life on which hunting and gathering bush tucker was reliant.

Name: Jenny Butt


Jenny grew up in Bidyadanga with family. She went to school in Darwin at St Johns College. After her schooling she returned to Bidyadanga. Jenny enjoys traveling to see family. She regularly travels to Parnngurr to see her grandmother's side of the family, She has brothers and sisters that live in Parnngurr. 


© the artist / art centre