Billy Missi 'Pulah (medicine from the beach)'
Linocut printed in black ink from one block, handcoloured
Edition of 90, 2008
Published by Djumbunji Press KickArts Fine Art Printmaking
Image size: 698mm x 903mm
Paper size: 1120mm x 810mm
Paper type: Arches BFK 300 GSM
Ink type: Van Son
Printed by: Theo Tremblay, Elizabeth Hunter
Billy Missi, 1970- 2012, was from Kubin Village, Moa Island in Zenadh-Kes (the Torres Strait). His solo exhibition Urapun Kai Buai (One Big Kin) focuses on family and cultural protocols, and the artist's contemporary life experiences growing up in Zenadh-Kes. Missi is known as one of the leading printmakers of this region, having exhibited widely and achieved both national and international acclaim. He comes from a respected family of art practitioners and choreographers, from the tribes of Wagedagam, Geomu and Panai in Malu Lilgal (Western Torres Strait). His work is based on reasons for survival. He states: "The Torres Strait has a complex history and culture, vegetation and eco systems that work with the phases of the moon, so the livelihood of people in that region is based on, and strongly connected with the natural surroundings, hunting and gathering, identifying foods. Its why our people have continued to pass on traditional stories and cultural traditions".
Story: "Pulah vines commonly grow wild on beaches surrounding our beautiful island in Zenadh-Kes (the Torres Strait).
It is the source of one of our respiratory medicines.
Also, whenever you are stung by stingray barbs or stonefish, this is the vine that you mash and put on the sore. The sap draws out the poison. With a stonefish sting the pain comes and throbs when the tide rises.
It is so important to know the bush medicines that have been handed down from generation to generation. Pulah is one of them."