This painting represents the waters at Miliway, where a strong saltwater current passes between Ḻaŋarra (Howard Island) and the mainland. It is a Wobulkarra design passed on to the artist by his father.
The red, yellow and white rärrk (cross-hatching) represents the Yirritja freshwater Guḻarri. Guḻarri are the waters of a catchment that meets the sea on Yatjany’s country at Miliway. The Guḻarri waters pass through various clan estates as they gather force and flow seaward, creating connections between these clans. These connections are reinforced and embodied in song and ceremonial practice.
The white rärrk is raŋ, the white caps and bubbles of Miliway’s rough waters, which belong to the Dhuwa moiety, belonging to the Dhalnyirr clan, who share Miliway with Wobulkarra.
These two elements of raŋ and Guḻarri are related to each other as mother and child, a ceremonially binding relationship in the Yolŋu sphere known as yothu-yindi. Yothu-yindi is symbolic of the two divisions of the cosmos, Dhuwa and Yirritja, and all interdependent ceremonial relationships.