Morning Star Pole with yam leaf decorations (detail)

Terry Dhurritjini Yumbulul

Morning Star Pole with yam leaf decorations (detail) by Terry Dhurritjini Yumbulul


Terry Dhurritjini Yumbulul
Morning Star Pole with yam leaf decorations (detail)
natural earth pigments on wood with string and feathers
height: 161cm

signed base: Yumbulul '07

Stock Number

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the artist

Further Information

diam. 4.3cm with yam leaf decoration

The Morning Star Pole is a sacred object used in dances to represent the Morning Star or resting place of the Dhuwa people, made generally for funeral ceremonies. The feathered strings represent the rays of the star,along which the souls climb to their final resting place; the feathers at the top are the heart of the star where the souls of the people go; from here they watch over their family until they meet again. Different patterns are painted along the shaft depending on the tribe and place within the tribe that the person holds.
This particular Morning Star Pole depicts the yam root with the leaves and flowers growing from it and decorating the pole. On one level the climbing vine represents the spirit reaching towards the star. However there is a deeper level of meaning which is indicated by the borders and bunched up feather work which denote more complex stories. In this instance, the stories are about the flowering of life and the essence of feminity.