Reconciliation SA Innovate RAP Art Story

The artwork, by mother and daughter Sally Scales & Josephine Mick (Collaborative) This is the creation story for Wati Tjakura, an edible skink lizard. This took place at Aralya, sacred country. The army of Wati Wanambi (male water snakes) came from Malara and threw spears at Wati Tjakura. He tried to escape but they killed him. His family came down to bury him.

Josephine Watjari Mick was born in 1955 to revered artist Kuntjiriya Mick, at a site near Pukatja (Ernabella). She grew up mostly in the eastern APY Lands and has strong family ties in this area. When she was a young girl, Josephine had a vivid dream in which she saw a bright tongue of fire. In the dream, she walked towards the fire and thought she had burnt her hands, but when she woke up, she realised her hands were hot. Shortly after, Josephine started working as a Ngangkari (or traditional healer). She believes that her dream had given her the power to do so. She has mostly focussed her healing work on women and children. During the homelands movement of the 1970s, Josephine moved to Pipalyatjara. As well as being a Ngangkari (traditional healer), Josephine is very involved in cultural business. She has also been an active member of Ninuku Arts and has held the role of director several times. She now resides in Adelaide with her daughter Sally Scales and paints with the APY Art Centre Collective’s: APY Studio Adelaide

Sally Scales is a Pitjantjatjara woman from Pipalyatjara in the far west of the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands in remote South Australia. Sally was a Project Officer with Tjanpi Desert Weavers from 2008 – 2010 and worked in the education sector from 2014-2018 on the remote schools’ strategy. Sally has worked with the APY Art Centre Collective since 2013 in Cultural Liaison, Elder Support and Spokesperson roles. Sally turned her focus to her artistic practice in 2020 and held her first exhibition at the APY Gallery Adelaide in March 2021. It was a sell-out exhibition.