Artists statement

There are many stories about the Hairy Beka, many of them lost. The story I know is about the creature who lived in the bush. It was very tall and was covered in long white hair and had a strong foul odour. When it walked, its bones made a cracking sound, and it would come around at night and watch when the children were sitting around the campfire. It was known to put the children in its dilly bag. but it would chant a song before grabbing the children and taking them away.

(Deewin (this one) Gomendaa (you there) Womigawin (and you) Womingenda and you as well.

The Hairy Beka is a well-known story, an old legend amongst the Yorta-Yorta people, to teach children respect, and not to wander too far from camp and to respect fire. This story was passed on by my grandmother (Kooka) Yarmuk, of the Ulupna Clan to her grandchildren.

- Aunty Zeta Thomson, Wurundjeri and Yorta -Yorta Traditional Owner.