A Different Take on Ghost Nets
July has been a productive and exciting month for the Yirralka miyalk (women) Rangers as the new miyalk ranger’s uniform skirt has been completed. And what is it exactly that is so exciting about a new uniform? Well, these uniforms were personally designed and hand printed by rangers who decided that the pattern should reflect the djama (work) done on land and sea.
Ghost nets are a very big issue for Yirralka Rangers as the rangers are responsible for the maintenance of 480km of coastline. Many of these beaches are east-facing and are therefore exposed and vulnerable to ghost net wash-ups. Therefore the miyalk rangers have decided to reflect this issue and their commitment to this problem in their apparel.
With input from the rangers, the design was created by Guykuda (Peter) Mununggurr, a talented artist from Northeast Arnhem Land in the homeland community of Garrthalala. Rangers then worked alongside Andrea Campbell, a project officer and artist who provided guidance and experience with the overall process. With the added support of Miwatj Employment and Participation, together, this new and exciting project has turned out to be a huge success, and the project has left rangers with new skills and experience as well as looking good.
Story and photos by Livie Powell