Etching & aquatint
49.2 x 20.8 cm
The Kulama ceremony occurs towards the end of the Wet Season, the traditional period of
initiation for young boys and which coincides with the harvest of the bush yam.
As with much Tiwi art, Conrad Tipungwuti’s aquatint etching, Kulama, employs line and
circle patterning as its encompassing feature. However, although this mark-making does
have the intended effect of abstract decoration, it can often mistakenly be considered onedimensional.
Indeed, the circles in this print refer implicitly to both the concentric circle of
the dancing ground used during the Kulama ceremony, as well as the ring around the
moon that can be seen at this time.
Conrad Tipungwuti was born on 24 September, 1966. His country is Ranku, and he
speaks Tiwi. Conrad lives on Melville Island and has participated in many group
exhibitions since 1997.