"Wandjina", by Watti Karrarrwarra

Celebrating Wandjina

Watti Karrarrwarra was one of the first cohort of artists to depict their Wandjina as an artform. There had been great reticence by elders to do so, fearing the consequences of representing the powerful Wandjina. A Wunambal elder, Wattie spent some time in Wyndham gaol, where he learnt to paint, and then came to Mowanjum where his uncle taught him to paint Wandjina. His Wanjina are typically from the inland, framed by fanned headdresses and have rounded bodies. Wattie emerged as an artist in the 1970s and this coloured drawing is one of the repatriated objects returned to the Mowanjum community. It is now in the Dolord Mindi collection.

Available at:

Mowanjum Aboriginal Art and Culture Centre

Waking up the spirit

Waking up the spirit of the Country through songs, dance, art and story, by sharing and teaching young people, is what the Mowanjum Aboriginal Art and Culture Centre does to keep their culture alive...


Gibb River Road
Derby WA 6728

Open Hours

Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm; or book group tours by calling 08 9191 1008. Entrance fee to Museum applies.

More from the Mowanjum Aboriginal Art and Culture Centre

boab carvings

Derby’s icon is larrkardi or the boab tree, which produces large edible nuts, the surface of which, is perfect for engraving. Worrorra elder, Jack Wherra is recognised for his intricate boab nut...

Ancient technologies adapt to new materials

Kimberley points are like a signature from the people of the coastal ranges of the Kimberley. Unique to this area, they are functionally beautiful objects created by skilled artisans for use as knives...

While you're in the area

Boab Prison Tree
Boab Prison Tree
The massive ancient Boab Prison Tree is believed to be around 1,500 years...
Broome-Derby Highway, Derby, WA 6728
Galvans Gorge
Galvans Gorge
Galvans Gorge is the most accessible gorge along the legendary Gibb River...
Galvans Way, Derby, WA 6728
Derby Jetty
Derby Jetty
Located north of the Derby town site, the jetty experiences the biggest...
via Jetty Road, Derby, WA 6728
Myalls Bore
Myalls Bore
Visit Myalls Bore, near Derby to witness the ingenuity of the early...
Derby Gibb River Road, Derby, WA 6728