Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that the following pages may contain images or names of people who have since passed away.

Miyinga (Scars)

Maria Josette Orsto

ochre and acrylic on canvas

60cm x 90cm x 6cm



In the olden days men used to scar themselves for their promised wife. For the first promised wife, they would scar themselves across the chest.When they wanted a second wife (they were usually young women who were just becoming mature)… They would hide them in a paperbark hut so no other man would steal them.The men would scar themselves with V shape  on the chest.This scaring was  called miyinga and was  usually done at the kulama ceremony.





Tiwi Designs Aboriginal Corporation

Tiwi Design Aboriginal Corporation was incorporated in 1980 and is one of the longest established Indigenous art centres in Australia. However, the beginnings of Tiwi Design emerged in 1969 when two young men, Bede Tungatalum and Giovanni Tipungwuti began carving into wood blocks and printing onto textiles. These young men became known as the first Indigenous screen-printers in Australia and began a tradition that continues today at Tiwi Design.

‘Bima Figures’ Maria Josette Orsto 2020

More Artworks from Tiwi Designs Aboriginal Corporation

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