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Mimih figures

The museum has an impressive array of figurative carvings from Arnhem Land, including the mischievous spirits called mimihs. These live in caves and rock shelters in the stone country of western Arnhem Land, where they left their shadows behind in rock art that is a few thousand years old. They are long, slender figures often depicted either in flight chasing kangaroos or dancing.

Two of these figures, the second and fourth from the left, were made at Barrihdjowkkeng, an outstation near Maningrida and home of the most famous carver of mimihs, the late Kunwinjku artist Crusoe Kuningbal.

Indigenous Mimih figures
 Indigenous Mimih figures

 Mimih figures, Guningbal, Njiminjuma (detail)

 Mimih figures, Guningbal, Njiminjuma (detail)

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Indigenous Mimih figures (1972, n.d.,1978, n.d.), natural pigments on wood
Dimensions H 15.5 –193 x diam. 7–15.5 cm
Registration No. X 97923/25/95/96
Image source: Museum Victoria

© Museum Victoria Australia