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Pedro Wonaeamirri

Skin: Milipurrula (White Cockatoo)
Country: Andranangoo (Goose Greek)
Dance: Jilarti (Brolga)
Dot Texture Short 2

Pedro grew up in Pirlangimpi (Pularumpi) on Mellville Island. As a teenager he moved with his family to Milikapiti.

He was educated in Darwin, and fortuitously in 1989, on his return to Milikapiti, the fledgling arts centre Jilamara Arts and Crafts was incorporated.

Pedro’s country Andranganoo is on the eastern side of Melville Island “the land or country where I come from is from my father’s father, my grandfather”. 

Pedro’s art is steeped in Tiwi tradition yet is timeless. 

Tiwi art is derived from ceremonial body painting and the ornate decoration applied to Pukumani funerary poles, Tunga bark baskets, and associated ritual objects made for the Pukumani ceremony. Traditionally the deceased Tiwi people are buried on the day they pass away, but the Pukumani ceremonies are performed six months to several years after the death. 

“The Pukumani ceremony is very important to us” Pedro Wonaeamirri states. “It’s a time when we get together and the old people sing and dance. I learnt to carve Pukumani Poles by watching my elders, who are no longer with me today. 

The designs are already in my head and I use the Kayimwagakimi our traditional wooden comb made from ironwood and natural ochres from the Island to paint.

The first mob that dance are of one totem. If the deceased person for example is Magpie Goose, all Magpie Goose totem people dance.

Pedro has been exhibiting since 1989 and his artworks are in many national, state and private collections Australia wide and overseas. 

He is a senior Culture man of the Tiwi Islands with a significant and strong knowledge of the ‘hard’ Tiwi language and all of the songs and dancing important in Tiwi Culture.

He is a board member on several organisations including the Tiwi Land Council, Tiwi Education Board and ANKA (the peak body for Top End Art Centres based in Darwin).

Artworks by Pedro Wonaeamirri

Kulama - Print - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Kulama

288r-14-3/10

$460

Pedro Wonaeamirri

39.5 x 30cm (image), etching
Kulama - Print - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Kulama

288b-14-3/10

$460

Pedro Wonaeamirri

39.5 x 30cm, etching
Kukunikimi - Print - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Kukunikimi

389-16-19/20

$288

Pedro Wonaeamirri

15 x 20cm (image), etching with chine-colle
Yirrinkrupwoja (Body Painting) #2 - Lithograph - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Yirrinkrupwoja (Body Painting) #2

1032-04-45/55

$920

Pedro Wonaeamirri

86 x 61cm (image), multi-plate lithograph
Yirrinkiripwoja - Painting - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Yirrinkiripwoja

379-17

$8,280

Pedro Wonaeamirri

120 x 60cm, natural ochre on linen
Kulama - Etching Prints - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Kulama

120-00-X/30

$920

Pedro Wonaeamirri

89.5 x 50cm (image), hard ground and lift ground etching
Yirrinkiripwoja (body paint design) - Print - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Yirrinkiripwoja (body paint design)

NEPW1-06-X/30

$575

Pedro Wonaeamirri

76 x 56 cm (paper), sugarlift & aquatint etching

Jilamara

436-17-X/20

$502

Pedro Wonaeamirri

48.5 x 37.7cm (image), etching with screenprint
Yirrinkiripwoja (body paint design) - Print - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Yirrinkiripwoja (body paint design)

NE-06-PW1-24-30

$575

Pedro Wonaeamirri

76 x 56 cm (paper), sugarlift & aquatint etching
Tutini (Pukumani Pole) - Ironwood Carving - Pedro Wonaeamirri

Tutini (Pukumani Pole)

101-18

$6,900

Pedro Wonaeamirri

180 x 15 x 13cm, natural ochres on ironwood