Yananurala is marked by sitelines, places that contain and interconnect the stories, memories and histories of this Country. These are the veins of Sydney, a living and breathing place.

-Emily McDaniel, curator

Yananurala, translated from the Gadigal language as Walking on Country, is the name of a nine-kilometre walk that highlights Aboriginal history and culture at places along the Sydney harbour foreshore.

Yananurala combines two Gadigal words, yana (walk) and nura (Country). The ‘la’ adds an instruction, encouraging people to go walking on Country. The phrase ‘Yanala ngarala gadinurada. Yururala, yana yuramirung.’ (Walk, think, listen, hear on Gadi Country. Feel it strongly, walk with us.) will be added to signage and materials about the walk.

Selecting a Sydney Aboriginal Language name for the walk was the first project in The Harbour Walk Storytelling Report by Aboriginal curator Emily McDaniel, which extends the Eora Journey’s recognition in the public domain program across Sydney’s harbour foreshore, from the Australian National Museum in Tumbalong (Darling Harbour) to Woolloomooloo Bay.

Guided by Eora Journey Curatorial Advisor Hetti Perkins and the City of Sydney’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Panel, the report includes stories, project ideas and recommendations to create a transformative and memorable experience for Sydneysiders and visitors alike.

Future Yananurala | Walking on Country projects include:

  • eight installations incorporating audio that frame and explain ‘sitelines’ along the walk – sitelines are relationships between sites of historical and cultural significance
  • text or audio installations that respond to the intimate, hidden histories of the harbour at 12 locations along the foreshore
  • an environmental project led by an artist in partnership with universities and marine institutes to build on research around badu (water) and acknowledgement of Country as land, water and sky
  • a public artwork at Pirrama (Pyrmont), next to the Australian Maritime Museum, to recognise the connection between Aboriginal people and the harbour
  • a public art project at The Hungry Mile, Barangaroo, recognising Aboriginal people in Sydney’s maritime history
  • a public art project at Ta-ra (Dawes Point) that highlights the site where Patyegarang gifted the language of her people to William Dawes, recording it for future generations in his notebooks
  • a public art project at Circular Quay linking Aboriginal history associated with the Government Boatshed to the resilience of Aboriginal communities in Sydney
  • a community-based public art project that recognises the history and enduring presence of Aboriginal people in Woolloomooloo.

Through a curated series of Aboriginal stories, Yananurala presents an innovative way to inspire the public to experience the harbour foreshore in a way that is not currently available.

Yananurala is part of the Eora Journey and being be developed in partnership with Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council, NSW Government project partners, cultural institutions and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, with guidance from the City’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Panel.

Get arts and culture updates from City of Sydney News.

Sign up