Jilamara. Brian Farmer.
Brian Farmer



50 x 33 cm

Numbered 17/20


All jilamara (design) is originally drawn from the body painting which accompanied the

pukumani (funeral) and kulama (initiation/yam) ceremonies. All the artists living at Milikapiti

are drawing on collective Tiwi memory, and the individual expression and aesthetic

qualities of each artist's work is reflective of their personal interpretation of traditional Tiwi

design or jilamara.

Born in 1961 at Milikapiti on Melville Island, Brian’s country is Pickataramoor, his skin

group Pandanus and his dreaming dance the Seagull.

Brian went to school in Darwin & lived in central Australia doing a teacher’s course in the

1980s. He was Teacher’s aide at Milikapiti school in the 1980s. In 1981 he participated in

the Kulama ceremony held at Milikapiti. Old man (his relation) held the last Kulama but

Brian was in hospital. “Sometimes there is a story that I follow through to keep the

memories alive. Like a journey of growing up going through all the stages to manhood –


Brian would have painted for ceremony but not commercially until 2004 when he joined

Jilamara. His body design is an abstract design which is literally translated from ceremony,

but also represents a person’s journey through life. His art has a sensitive feel, his mark

making light and airy.


Brian represents the Tiwi people as one of the many Indigenous Directors with ANKAAA.

His plays an important role for Tiwi culture giving & receiving information within the arts.

Item #3135


See all items by