Barney Ellaga, a senior law man and custodian of the Alawa language group in Central Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory, was also a prominent artist and documenter of cultural information for his people.
His works, known for their striking use of vibrant colours and intricate designs, serve as visual illustrations that chronicle the sacred stories, traditions, and spiritual beliefs of the Alawa people.
Barney Ellaga was the ‘Tjungai’ or cultural policeman for the Alawa people. His position was to ensure cultural maintenance and adherence to cultural law associated with ceremony and traditional practices.
He is considered the last of the lawmen for his people.