Vera Koomeeta is a senior artist at Wik & Kugu. Following in the footsteps of her elders, including the late Mavis Ngallametta, Vera’s deep knowledge of Country is evident in her remarkably vibrant ochre paintings. Her work can match any of the top contemporary landscape painters in the country, and possibly the world.
“I was born in 22/06/1960 at Aurukun to the late Edwin and Dora Koomeeta nee (Toikalkin). The country Eramungk was known to both Northern and souther side of Knox River. Just behind the whispering Pines Oaks off the beach inland is the place called Oonam Theean. The urination place of dingos who belong to that area. On this Oonam Theean there is also a significant places one is 2 grave sites and to the north is the ceremonial ground. This place should not be entered. At the mouth of the river lays the Jabiru in the river is the story place of barramundi. This was told by my grandfather Uki Merkuul and by my father”.
“Kencharang is my mother’s country. Through my grandfather Tommy and Jack Toikalkin who know all the surrounding of Kencharang significant places were told and showed my uncle The late Roland Toikalkin and my small Mum Lois Toikalkin who where with them since their child hood days. I didn’t Think that painting would be my thing, until in 2013 when Gina Allain and Louise Ashmore started The Painted Stories through PAMA Futures. So I started to do paintings and even went to Hawaii for the International Vital Voice. It was then, when I realised that this was my missing link. I thought painting was fun and it is, but the missing link to my life was that it bought me closer to my cultural heritage, my language, and social culture as when I start practicing it more through my paintings. It helps me to teach my grandchildren through my paintings so that they too will understand more to culture, language, and more importantly their Identity where their great grandfather is from and where their great grandmother is from. I am so proud of who I am and where my heritage stands so it will be there for my future generations. I’m also Apalech Clan group. My great grandmother is from hold Holroyd River this is my father’s grandmother and his mother’s father is from Numbulwar. So bit of here and there. But I prefer my mum and dad’s country. Anman Kan (that’s all)”.
Women Painting Country – Cairns Art Gallery, 2021
2021 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair
2022 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair
2023 Cairns Indigenous Art Fair