Don’t Put Shit on Nature, Valla
Wyn was so annoyed one dawn at Valla Beach with all the dog excrement that she just put pen to paper or rather stick to sand in water.
Aborigines did not have the technology of writing, but they used sand as a material for their rich aesthetic. Anthropologists Ronald and Catherine Berndt provide the following description of the structure and function of these sand or ground paintings:
‘The main ingredients were ochre, blood and feather down, carefully superimposed on grooves, shallow ‘trenches’, holes or hollows to represent the contours and physiographic features of specific stretches of country … They were secret-sacred, and the designs replicated those that were incised on sacred boards and also painted on the bodies of ritual participants. Only persons linked through the Dreaming with the appropriate piece of territory and possessing the appropriate religious knowledge were in a position to re-create such ritual models . . . Each ground structure represented an identifiable area of country. The range of compositions was therefore extremely wide.’ Ronald M. Berndt & Catherine H. Berndt, Australian Aboriginal Art: A Visual Perspective, Methuen, 1982, p68-69.