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Aboriginal Tourism - Indigenous Australia - Iconography and Symbols
The dotted motifs of much of today’s Aboriginal modern design work has become the trademark of the contemporary Aboriginal Art movement. Its iconic status developed from a culture stretching back into the history of an ancient land, evolving and weaving into desert dreamtime stories.

Animals play a significant part in Indigenous culture, whether it is a totemic relationship, and part of a dreaming, or as food. Appearing in the artwork of many Aboriginal artist, it’s place goes beyond the physicality of bush tucker, being depicted in a number of dreamtime and other stories, such as ‘Goanna Dreaming’. There is another story that is described by the aboriginal artist Trephina Sultan Thanguwa in her work ‘Goanna Calling for Rain’:

The ‘Old People’ say when you see a goanna climbing up a tree or old log, it is calling for rain, to bring life back to the land, calling to the spirits who may be willing to listen and send rain.

In the depiction of the Goanna, many artist stamp their own unique way of portraying the animal, whether it is just showing the tracks left by the animal or as the flattened outline or three dimensional form. The ‘Ngintaka’ goanna often also appearing in animal carvings.

In Aboriginal art, there is a difference between the Goanna and the Perentie, as depicted in the ‘How the Perentie and Goanna got their Colours’.

Goanna tracks - Aboriginal Art & Symbolism © AusEmade PL


Goanna - Aboriginal Symbols, Icons and Imagery

SymbolsBush Tucker Bush Banana GoannaHoney AntsWitchetty GrubsWildlife

Bush Goanna © Clarabelle Swift
Goannas and Eggs © June Sultan
Goannas and Eggs © June Sultan

Bush Goanna © Clarabelle Swift

Goanna (from Story of the Goanna and the Perentie
© Trephina Sultan

© Danny Goodwin
Women - Men Hunting Bush Tucker (Snake / Goanna) © June Sultan 2007
Women - Men Hunting Bush Tucker
(Snake / Goanna) © June Sultan
From the Woman and Children Hunting © Trephina Sultan
From the Woman and Children Hunting
and Gathering Along the Creek Bed
© Trephina Sultan
Entrance to goanna burrow © Daniel Goodwin
Entrance to goanna burrow.
Entrances to goanna burrow © Daniel Goodwin
Goanna burrows often have multiple entrance.
Entrance to goanna burrow in spinifex country © Rex Sultan-Jabangardi
Entrance to goanna burrow surrounded by spinifex

> Goanna - Click here for next page

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