DM2018 MERR 5013
The area around Nauiyu (Daly River) is home to many plant types that form part of Ngan'gikurunggurr and Ngen'giwumirri people's traditional diet. Depicted in these artworks are the Mimuy (Long Yam - Dioscorea transversa), Mipiyagany/Misyiwirr (Big Cheeky Yams - Amorphophallus paeoniifolius) and Mimalabuk (Blue-flowered Water-lily - Nymphaea violacea).
(Source for plant identification: "Ngan'gikurunggurr and Ngen'giwumirri Plants and Animals - Aboriginal biocultural knowledge from the Moyle River area, north Australia")
"Merrepen Arts is a well established art centre with around 20 artists working in a variety of traditional and contemporary mediums painting regularly in a custom designed building located in the community of Daly River, south west of Darwin. A number of the most established artists from the region are now recognised on a national level. The number of working artists rises to approximately 80 during the annual Merrepen Arts and Sports Festival.
The Art Centre opened in 1986 and the artists are famous for their etchings and printmaking but also produce a number of artifacts in addition to paintings, using a multitude of materials and techniques in their creative expression. Using zinc plates, or lino plates, coloured ink and a press machine they produce etchings and prints, batik techniques using wax and silk painting to make t-shirts, scarves and sarongs, paper-mâché techniques to make bowls and animal figures, screen printing for tea-towels and other kind of fabric and weaving of Merrepen (sand palm) and Pandanus leaves to make dilly bags, fishnets, baskets and sun mats.
The painting is done using acrylic colours on canvas. The artists have always been open to new ideas on how to express their stories. They have become accustomed to each new medium introduced by early art coordinators or workshops, constantly improving in their art producing skills.
The beautiful paintings produced by the artists of Merrepen Arts are stylistically very different to what is generally expected of Aboriginal art."