Located in the southern part of the World Heritage-listed, Daintree National Park, Mossman Gorge is one of the few places in Australia that visitors can gain an insight into the lives, culture and beliefs of Australia’s Indigenous population and their connection to the natural environment.
An important part of this culture is Ochre painting.
Ochre is a natural earth pigment that comes from both rock and clay that the Kuku Yalangi people use for painting for their dance and ceremonies. The red ochre is called Mula represents the bloodline; the yellow ochre is called Makirr represents the Sun. The white ochre is called Bingaji represents their spirit. Ochre was often traded with other tribal groups in the area and there are certain areas in their country where the ochre is collected from. Body painting was done for special hunting trips, mourning, fighting, initiation and dancing occasions. While men were painted anywhere on their bodies, women were only painted on the faces. The Kuku Yalangi people paint stripes and dots. This is to represent the rainforest; the dots represent raindrops, the stripes represent the rivers.