Audrey Marrday

Audrey Marrday

My name is Audrey Marrday. I was born on the 24th of February 1973. I come from Manningrida in western Arnhemland. I am from the Namiri group and the Marrkolidjban outstation. Its a big outstation on the road from Maningrida to Darwin, there is a river with crocodiles, fish, everything. When i was young i met my husband Jason Marrkula from gapuwiyak and moved with him to his wanga (home). My skin name is Wamutjan and my moiety is Dhuwa.

I love making baskets and fish sculptures from pandanus fiber with natural bush dyes. I used to watch my Mari (mother’s mother) Barbara Ngalmababba making everything; like baskets and mats. She told me “Later on in the future you will make things like these.”

Then, my Husband’s mother, Helen Djaypila Guyula, started to teach me the pandanus weaving techniques. Now I know everything; basket, mat, bulpu (dilly bag), dyeing, string. My art looks a bit different to the Gapuiwyak style. I had all the styles from Maningrida in my mind. It makes me feel good to make art, it makes me happy. When I collect the pandanus I will have an idea in my mind for a weaving, like a basket. Next time it might be a mat or a lamp shade. Sometimes I remember something I saw my grandmother make and I will try that. I like using traditional colours; plain, red, yellow, black, green and all the different shades. I like to do what my Mari did, I keep thinking about my Mari’s story. All my uncles, fathers, mothers, aunties they are all artists, I grew up around that. This is what I have inherited, the way they worked, how they chose things. My husbands family are also artists, art is always around me. I am now teaching my own daughter to be an artist.

Lake Evella