Ian Dunlop

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Desert People
Desert People was shot in 1965 in the Gibson Desert of the Australian Western Desert. There was still a handful of family groups perhaps three or four, living a nomadic hunter-food gatherer life, somewhere in the heart of the desert.…
Singing in the Rain - Yirrkala in 1974
Part of the Series: The Yirrkala Film Project
1974 was a troubled time for the Yirrkala community. The Gove bauxite mine, on its doorstep, had been operating for four years. The effects of alcohol, from the newly built mining town of Nhulunbuy, were causing grave concern to the…
Remembering Yayayi - The History of Pintupi
Remembering Yayayi reflects on a pivotal moment in the history of Pintupi people through a body of archival film. In 1974, filmmaker Ian Dunlop visited Yayayi, a remote community in Central Australia. The Pintupi people had recently moved there to…
Seed Cake Making and General Camp Activity
A general introduction to the series "People of the Australian Western Desert", shot in 1965 with Djagamara and his family at Badjar and Minma and his family at Tika Tika and Yalara, in the Gibson Desert area of the Western…
Spear-Thrower Making Including Stone Flaking and Gum Preparation
A man of the Western Desert makes a spear thrower (or Woomera), he cuts the wood from a mulga tree and shapes it with a metal axe. He prepares spinifex gum, flakes a stone blade, and sticks the stone (for…
Spinning Hair String - Getting Water from a Well - Binding Girl’s Hair
In three sequences - A woman of the Western Desert spins human hair string. A girl climbs into one of the deep wells at Tika Tika and scoops up water from the bottom with her wooden dish. The girl's hair…
Pain for This Land
Part of the Series: The Yirrkala Film Project
In 1970 Ian Dunlop began a long-term film project with the Yolngu of Yirrkala for Film Australia. Pain for This Land is a general introduction to the Yirrkala Film Project. The film begins in 1970 with a village council meeting.…
Kangaroo Cooking at Kunapural
A man of the Western Desert cooks a kangaroo according to Western Desert custom and then divides it into its various cuts using stone and wooden tools. Children get water from a well in a rocky area using wooden dishes.
Fire Making
Two boys of the Western Desert make fire. They gather dry kangaroo dung, crumble it and put it in a cup of dry grass which they stuff into a crack in a dead log of wood. They rub a spear-thrower…
Spear Making - Boys’ Spear Fight
In two separate sequences - A man of the Western desert demonstrates spear making, he uses a mulga tree for the shaft and shapes it with a metal axe. His sons play at spear fighting with toy spears.
Dances at Aurukun
This film is a record of traditional Aboriginal dancing at Aurukun Mission on Cape York Peninsula in far north Queensland. Filmed in 1962 for the Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, it showcases and preserves Wik ritual dances and ceremonies at…
Gum Preparation - Stone Flaking - Djagamara Leaves Badjar
Daily life and technology of nomadic Aborigines of the Western Desert. A man prepares gum from spinifex, which is used as a general purpose cement, he strikes stone flakes for tools. He leaves his camp at Badjar.
Cooking Kangaroo
A kangaroo has been shot. A man of the Western Desert guts it using the stone in the handle of his spear-thrower. After singeing off the fur in a blazing fire. The kangaroo is cooked in a trench covered with…
Conversations with Dundiwuy Wanambi
Part of the Series: The Yirrkala Film Project
This is a personal film about Dundiwuy Wanambi over the years that Ian Dunlop knew and worked with him. It is made up mainly of interviews filmed with Dundiwuy at Yirrkala and at his Marrakulu clan centre at Gurka'wuy between…
Old Camp Sites at Tika Tika - Mending a Cracked Dish - Quandong Medical
In three separate sequences - An old deserted camp site in the Western Desert; A woman mends a cracked wooden dish with spinifex gum; A woman demonstrates the preparation of a headache lotion from Quandong fruit.
A Family Moves Camp and Gathers Food
A nomadic family of the Western Desert moves from Yalara camp to Tika Tika camp a days walk away. On the way they gather fruit, grass seed, lizards and a rabbit eared bandicoot. After making camp and getting water from…
At Patantja Clay Pan
Two days in the life of three families of the Western Desert who were camped together by a large clay pan. Good rain had fallen some months ago, the clay pan is largely covered with water, and game and vegetable…
Making a Wira
A man of the Western Desert cuts a section of wood from a tree for making into a digging dish or wira. He starts by using the hand chopper he has made, but after a time changes to a metal…
Narritjin at Djarrakpi
In 1974, Narritjin Maymuru and his family are establishing a small settlement at Djarrakpi, an important Manggalili clan site on the northern head of Blue Mud Bay in the Northern Territory. Clip #1: "Narritjin at Djarrakpi: Part 1" - Clip…
2 videos
Mamu
Two men of the Western Desert chase amamu or evil spirit out of camp. Both men are mapantjara, men who have the power to remove powerful bones or stones from their stomachs and use them for medicine and dealing with…