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Thorny Devil Lizard Dreaming

Thorny Devil Lizard Dreaming is referring to the Thorny Devil Lizard that is found throughout central Australia. It is a small fearsome looking creature that gives a false notion of being harmless and placid. The ‘thorny’ skin is used to protect the lizard from predators, and having chameleon abilities, the Mt Devil Lizard easily blends into the environment, making it a very difficult and elusive creature to catch.

The Aboriginal people believe that during Dreamtime, this small lizard used to collect and carry the ochre colors in a pouch located at the back of its neck. Being the transporter of color, the Mt Devil Lizard walked the land depositing these ochre colors throughout the country. Since time immemorial, Aboriginal people have used these colors to decorate their bodies during ceremony.

Mountain Devil Dreaming is especially important to Kathleen Petyarre, as this story was passed down to her from her Grandfather’s side, which makes her the custodian and a strong family Dreaming.

The connection between human and animal can often be found in many Dreamings, strangely this connection can also be seen in the physical. Unique to the Petyarre lineage, many of the family members carry biologically inherited markings on their skin similar to those found on the Mountain Devil Lizard, the physical re-instates the mythological.