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© Nancy McDinny/Licenced by Viscopy, 2017

Macassin Collecting Trapang

Date: before 2006
900 x 1200 x 25 mm
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Copyright: © Nancy McDinny
Object Name: Painting
Object No: 00042367

User Terms

    From as early as the 1600s Macassan sailors from Sulawesi sailed each year to northern Australia. They called this land Marege.

    The Macassans came to collect trepang (also called teripang, sea slug, sea cucumber, bêche-de-mer, iriko) an exotic delicacy much demanded by Chinese. While debate continues about when these expeditions began, it was Australia’s first ‘export’ industry. The visitors established camps and built smokehouses. The beach was a place of business and interaction between Macassans and Aborigines.

    Citing ‘health’ reasons, government authorities ended the centuries-old trade in 1906.

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