Title: Gurrupudu the Diver Bird

Artist: Bob Bilinyara


Title: Gurrupudu the Diver Bird

Artist: Bob Bilinyara

Date: 20th Century

Materials: Mineral pigments on eucalyptus bark

Dimensions: 26 cm width x 59 cm length x 28 cm width x 64 cm length

Location: Madison Art Collection

Accession Number 83.4.2

Visual Analysis

Artist Bob Bilinyara’s (1915-1959) eucalyptus bark painting Gurrupurru the Diver Bird (c.1930-1956), depicts a diver bird and six catfish in the Ramingining-Glyde River region at the permanent waterholes of the Gatji lagoon in Central Arnhem Land (1). The diver duck is both the central figure and the largest, it dominates the composition and the six smaller catfish that surround it. The background of the work is filled with a red ochre, or mineral pigment, that has faded over the years, while white lines filled in with black ocher create a border around the centralized subject matter. This bark painting is believed to depict the story of the ancestral diver bird. The ancestral diver bird is related to the creation of the Yathalamarra and Gatji waterholes around Arnhem Land . . . .

Please, go to the website. There is a lot more interesting information!

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