- Medium: Etching – Tusche Technique
- Size: 450 x 800 (image) and 480 x 980 (paper)
- Paper: Hahnemuhle 350gsm
- Edition: 99
- Published: Darwin, NT 2005
- Studio: Basil Hall Editions
- Printer: Natasha Rowell
This print relates to an important ceremony carried out by the Rain Sorcerer when the wells have dried up. The bottom half of the print shows a big mushroom cloud rising on the horizon (begai). It also represents Badu Island’s parliamentary house (kwod), where the sorcerers and chiefs decide together when the rain should come. They decide to call on the Rain Sorcerer to bring the rain and he stands on top of the kwod conducting business. The frogs at the top represent rain clouds. They chant with the Rain Sorcerer until finally the rain comes down. It can be seen running from the third frog down to the largest frog at the base of the image. This frog indicates that the rain has finally come. Rain is important in the Torres Strait for watering the bush vegetables which are a vital source of food all year round.
Dennis Nona Biography
Born in 1973 on Badu Island in the Torres Strait
Dennis Nona was taught the traditional craft of woodcarving when he was still a young boy. This skill has been developed and translated into the incredibly intricate and beautiful linocuts, etchings and sculptures created by the artist since the commencement of his art practice in 1989. Dennis Nona’s work is inspired by coastal life, family, traditional medicines and the myths and legends of the Torres Strait.
He has vividly documented the ancient myths and legends of his island and the wider Torres Strait that had previously been transmitted by oral story-telling and dance. Dennis Nona uses a highly graphic way of storytelling, and links the works with a matrix of delicately lined clan patterning, that binds the entire story to its place of origin.
Dennis holds a Degree in Visual Arts from Cairns TAFE and a Diploma in Visual Arts in Print Making from the Australian National University in Canberra. His art has been collected by a number of prestigious collections and art galleries worldwide, with the number now exceeding 46. He has exhibited his art on more that 160 occasions in some of the most prestigious galleries in the world.
Dennis has won the Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Ward for Works on Paper on three occasions and was an outright winner for a sculpture. He has also won numerous other art awards for his prints.
Initially excelling in lino cuts, Dennis expanded into etchings which have become some of the finest examples of Australian First Nations art.