(detail) John Williams, Thuwathu’s Trail, Acrylic on Belgian linen, 198 x 151cm. Image: MI Art

Feature Artwork: Thuwathu’s Trail, John Williams

This painting is about Thuwathu, the Rainbow Serpent and the trail he left and his resting place. After his sister burnt his humpy with him inside it, he rolled about in pain starting from Dugong River and creating story places as he went, he transformed the land, rivers, creeks, swamps, hills, reefs, fresh water holes and springs. His final resting place is at Wirrija where there is a rock bed of colours red, yellow and white. Here at this country don’t ever mix land food and sea food together or enter the salt water with greasy hand always wash your hands otherwise you mulgari - our people believe this spirit of the Rainbow Serpent will enter one’s body and you get really sick and Song Man would have to sing it out.

John Williams

Main image credit: (detail) John Williams, Thuwathu’s Trail, Acrylic on Belgian linen, 198 x 151cm. Image: MI Art

View Our Newsletter

Latest Issue The Archive

Donating to IACA

Learn More

IACA programs and events receive financial assistance from the Queensland Government through the Arts Queensland Backing Indigenous Arts initiative, from the Federal Government’s Ministry for the Arts through the Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support program, the Australia Council for the Arts and Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund - an Australian Government initiative. IACA supports the Indigenous Art Code.

Scroll to top


All donations and your support of IACA are both greatly appreciated.

Optionally select a specific project for your donation.
Donations are processed securely through PayPal. A PayPal account is not required to make a donation.