Mukulubena (Beautiful) Baskets – Aboriginal Bush Traders

Event Opens:   November 21, 2017

Event Closes:   November 21, 2017

Event Website:

Location:  Aboriginal Bush Traders - 74 The Esplanade, Darwin, Northern Territory 0800

Event Details:

Mukulubena (Beautiful) Baskets from the Groote Eylandt Ghost Net Weavers
Meet the Anindilyakwa artists for morning tea at 11.00am Tuesday 21st November

Approximately 640 tonnes of discarded fishing equipment, known as ‘ghost gear ‘, is abandoned in our oceans worldwide every year. Large amounts of these nets are found and removed from the remote beaches and seas by local rangers on Groote Eylandt in the Gulf of Carpenteria, often with entrapped and endangered animals found within them, dead and alive. Arnindilyakwa women have been preventing these nets from becoming landfill or releasing poisonous greenhouse gases when they are burnt. They weave them into unique baskets using bush dyed and recycled fabric, to utilise this environmental threat in a creative way, as well share the story of this ecological issue.

Women on Groote Eylandt first started weaving with ghost net in 2011, when Darwin artist, Aly de Groot, was invited by Ghost Nets Australia to facilitate ghost net weaving workshops at Anindilyakwa Art Centre. This year de Groot started full time employment with Anindilyakwa Arts, working with the artists using traditional knowledge and contemporary fibre art processes to create new ideas and designs.

Vera Lalara is an exceptional artist and weaver whose baskets will feature in this exhibition. She stays up late into the night, whilst her children sleep, weaving baskets where she lives on the remote 4 Mile Outstation.

‘Old People came to Angurugu School when I was young to teach us weaving. We go collecting Pandanus and string and dying with plants to make colours. I love making baskets both ways, the traditional ways that the old ladies teach me and these new ways with the ghost nets and bush dyed fabric. It’s important, to keep my culture going, for the future.”

This exhibition, hosted by Aboriginal Bush Traders, is the first time baskets made using ghost nets and bush dyed fabrics from Groote Eylandt will be shared with Darwin audiences and visitors to the Darwin region. Mukulubena will also showcase unique bush dyed textiles and homewares from Warnindilyakwa women artists.