My land is the desert plains. I used to do jewellery, I learned it from my grandmother (my father’s mother). She used to collect the tatgu (gum nut) and use hot wire to make it into jewellery. She was wearing it herself and sometimes it was for sale. I used to help her make it, she taught me and I learned it quick.
I learnt a lot of things from my Nana like wood carving, making little birds and lizards from punu (wood) that we collected from the creek. This is Anangu way. Now I use all that knowledge and I put it onto my ceramics.
My Aunty (father’s sister) was also a special lady. She taught me for bush medicine and we learn everything to do with bush fire and after the fire how to hunt for kuka (meat) like kangaroo. After bush fire there’s going to be new tjanpi (grass) and I do this in my artwork too.
I was lucky my Nana was still alive when I was growing up. She was a strong lady as she stayed out in the bush all the time. My father and my Aunty were ninty (clever) because they learn everything from her and then they teach it all to us kids too.
Marissa Angapiya Thompson, February 2022 (via Sabbia Gallery)