Matilda Oxtoby is one of two Kira Kiro Arts Project artists selected for the 2020 Revealed Exhibition. The art centre, located on the land of the Kwini people in Kalumburu in north western WA, was named after the Kira Kiro or Kirri Kirri spiritual figures represented in rock galleries found in the area.
Matilda’s works are similarly inspired by the important spiritual figure – the Wandjina (rainmaker), who brings the Wunju (wet season). “A long time ago my people believed that he (the Wandjina) was a god. They used to ask him for rain and food. He travelled around the coast creating the world and carrying the clouds… the Wandjina taught people how to make artefacts and hunting tools.”
In each of her six paintings selected for Revealed, Matilda has depicted the Wandjina surrounded by different things – shields used for fighting; dilly bags, used for carrying yams and bush berries; clapping sticks for dancing; and bush buckets for carrying honey.
Matilda is an established artist who has recently started painting at Kira Kiro. Inspired by her sister Sylvia Djanghara and well known artist and Uncle Waigan Djanghara, Matilda’s works reflect and consider local rock art themes and the flora and fauna that inhabit the river and pristine coastline of the Kalumburu surrounds.
View Matilda’s series of works and the full Revealed Exhibition in person when FAC reopens Monday 15 June. The exhibition is open daily until Sunday 26 July. Free entry.