A trail for children exploring birds, stars and icons

Christina Gollan, Kaurna/Boandik/Ngarrindjeri people, South Australia, born Adelaide 1967, The Superb Fairy Wren, 2021, Adelaide, stoneware, glaze, 25.0 x 46.0 cm © Christina Gollan

Christina Gollan, Kaurna/Boandik/Ngarrindjeri people, South Australia, born Adelaide 1967, The Superb Fairy Wren, 2021, Adelaide, stoneware, glaze, 25.0 x 46.0 cm © Christina Gollan; photo: Grant Hancock.

Tarnanthi Twitcher

Become a Twitcher as you explore Tarnanthi. Draw all the birds you notice on your journey downstairs. How many different birds do you recognise? Can you identify any of the birds by name? Which of these birds are in your school or home environment?


Nathan Thomas, Gija people, Western Australia, born Halls Creek, Western Australia 1978, Untitled (Boab Bird), 2021, Kununurra, Western Australia, engraved boab nut, 19.0 x 9.0 x 9.0 cm © Nathan Thomas/Waringarri Arts

Nathan Thomas, Gija people, Western Australia, born Halls Creek, Western Australia 1978, Untitled (Boab Bird), 2021, Kununurra, Western Australia, engraved boab nut, 19.0 x 9.0 x 9.0 cm © Nathan Thomas/Waringarri Arts.

Making Murmurations

Have you ever seen hundreds of birds fly in a synchronised or coordinated pattern? This is called murmuration. Look at the murmuration of birds made by 9 artists living across the Kimberley carved from boab nuts. Draw the outline of your favourite bird. Repeat this outline to cover your page with a murmuration pattern.


detail: Kaylene Whiskey, Yankunytjatjara people, South Australia, born Mparntwe (Alice Springs), Northern Territory 1976, Seven Sistas Sign, 2021, Indulkana, South Australia, water-based enamel paint on SA Tourist Attraction Road Sign, 75.0 x 270.0 x 3.0 cm © Kaylene Whiskey/Iwantja Arts

Kaylene Whiskey, Yankunytjatjara people, South Australia, born 1976, Mparntwe (Alice Springs), Northern Territory, Seven Sistas Sign, 2021, Indulkana, South Australia, water-based enamel paint on SA Tourist Attraction road sign, 75.0 x 270.0 x 3.0 cm; Courtesy the artist and Iwantja Arts, © Kaylene Whiskey | Iwantja Arts.

Female Icons

Watch the animation Party Time! by Kaylene Whiskey in Gallery 9. Make a list of any things or people you recognise. Share your list with others, what else did your friends and family notice? Can your findings be grouped in some way?

The title of Whiskey’s latest painting, Seven Sistas Sign (2021), is a play on words. It refers to the story of the Seven Sisters, Kungkarangalpa, a significant Tjukurpa (ancestral story) for the Aṉangu people, as well as for many other language groups and communities across Australia. Whiskey’s seven female icons stand in for the strength and resilience of Whiskey’s own community of sistas. Draw a female role model in your life. It might be someone you know personally in your family or community or it could be someone who influences you from sport or popular culture. Capture their strength, resilience and character. You may even like to transform this person into a superhero.


Nyunmiti Burton, Pitjantjatjara people, South Australia, born Mparntwe (Alice Springs), Northern Territory 1960, Kungkarangkalpa – Seven Sisters, 2020, Adelaide, synthetic polymer paint on linen, 290.0 x 290.0 cm; Gift of Anna Baillie-Karas, Mary Choate, Amanda Harkness, Jacqui McGill, Peter and Pamela McKee, Zena Winser through the Art Gallery of South Australia Foundation 20th Anniversary Collectors Club 2020 Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide c Nyunmiti Burton/APY Art Centre Collective

Nyunmiti Burton, Pitjantjatjara people, South Australia, born 1960, Mparntwe (Alice Springs), Northern Territory, Kungkarangkalpa- Seven Sisters, 2020, Adelaide, synthetic polymer paint on linen, 290.0 x 290.0 cm; Gift of Anna Baillie-Karas, Mary Choate, Amanda Harkness, Jacqui McGill, Peter and Pamela McKee, Zena Winser through the Art Gallery of South Australia Foundation 20th Anniversary Collectors Club 2020, Art Gallery of South Australia, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide, © Nyunmiti Burton | APY Art Centre Collective, photo: Grant Hancock.

Look and compare

Look at Kungkarangkalpa- Seven Sisters by Nyunmiti Burton in Gallery 7 (you can’t miss it!). Like Kaylene Whiskey, Burton has painted the ancestral story of the Seven Sisters. What similarities or differences do you notice about these two works?