Another painting and story from Jacky Green, pictured a long way from home for a big city exhibition of his works in 2013.
Jacky Green, 2013, Private Collection
This painting is about Irinju one of the ancestral beings from a region that is now within Soudan Station in the Northern Territory. This is the place where I was born under a coolabah tree in one of the creek beds running out from the main creek at Soudan Station. The creek where I was born is in an old devil devil story for that country. We call the old devil devil Irinju. He lives under the ground and used to send his hand up out of the creek bed to pick wild oranges from a tree that grew on the hill, west of Soudan Station. When old devil devil was taking the oranges he was stealing them from another old fella from the area where the tree grew. He kept pinchin’ them. That old fella kept wondering why his wild oranges were going missing all the time. To find out what was going on he decided to watch the tree. He’d count the oranges and then go back and see that some more had
gone. He figured that old devil devil was pinchin’ them. So he went to the wild orange tree and waited. It wasn’t long until he saw old devil devil’s hand come up out of the earth and take the wild oranges from the tree. Right away, that old fella, he got his stone axe out and cut the hand off the
arm. The hand fell down and made a big hole, right there. When old devil devil pulled his arm back into the earth it was going everywhere, all over, waving back and forth. It was this action that made the creek bed and that’s right where I was born in the elbow of Irinju, right there, in Wakaya