Graphic showing hands cradling an image of Jiigurru also known as Lizard Island

Mangal Bungal: Clever Hands

This event has now finished

Recommended for all ages

Queensland Museum


Bookings are no longer available 

The Connections across the Coral Sea: A story of movement exhibition reveals the latest archaeological findings about the earliest movements of people and trade between the seafaring cultures of Papua New Guinea, Torres Strait, and the northeast coast of Queensland. The exhibition shares the amazing story of the scientific evidence that complements the traditional knowledge held by the Dingaal clan – that the Coral Sea has long been a place of cultural exchange, trade, and connection with our neighbours.

To celebrate the stories behind the exhibition, the Dingaal community from the northeast coast of Australia led Mangal Bungal: Clever Hands: 3-days of cultural events from 7-9 July 2023. The program brought to life traditional knowledge and stories of walking on Country through dance, storytelling, hands-on workshops, and immersive digital projections.

Mangal Bungal means “clever with hands” in Guugu Yimithirr language and is about connecting culture and spirituality and using your hands to create.

Dingaal stories are entwined with Country and Mangal Bungal: Clever Hands brought this remote Country to Queensland Museum through artworks made from natural materials from Jiigurru (Lizard Island) and a planetarium video of the island and its cultural sites. 



Mangal Bungal: Clever Hands is a Queensland Museum event created in partnership with the Dingaal people through the Walmbaar Aboriginal Corporation, and the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Australian Biodiversity and Heritage (CABAH). The event is also supported by James Cook University, UNSW Sydney, University of Wollongong, Deakin University and Monash University. The research presented in the associated Connections across the Coral Sea exhibition was undertaken by CABAH in partnership with the Walmbaar Aboriginal Corporation and Hope Vale Congress Aboriginal Corporation.
  • Cabah and Walmbaar logos

Tanya Yoren – Creative lead and Director of Walmbaar Aboriginal Corporation

Dingaal Community, artists, performers, and advisors
Zyandah Deeral
Shailand Deeral-Rosendale – Director of Walmbaar Aboriginal Corporation
Jamiel Gibson
Kenneth McLean - Chairperson and Director of Walmbaar Aboriginal Corporation
Elaine McGreen
Stephen Pilcher (didgeridoo)
Little Vernon Roughsey
Blaneton Roughsey
Thudu Thompson
Theresa Thompson
Stanton Thompson
Bryanne Darkan Yoren
Phylicia Yoren
Susan Yoren
Vernon Yoren
Zykiem Yoren

Core creative support team
Bianca Beetson – First Nations engagement, Queensland Museum
Lizzie Crouch – Project initiator and creative producer, UNSW/CABAH
Shelley Dunlop – Museum project manager, Queensland Museum 
Lizzie Muller – Project initiator and engagement advisor, UNSW/CABAH
Jodie Muraca – Engagement development and delivery, Queensland Museum 
Martin Potter – Filmmaker, Deakin/CABAH
Avril Quaill – First Nations engagement, Queensland Museum 
Sean Ulm – CABAH research and community engagement advisor, JCU/CABAH
Bridget Wall – Museum project lead, First Nations engagement, Queensland Museum

Queensland Museum
David Allen
Leitha Assan
Cathy ter Bogt
Laura Cantrell
Casey Davidson
Cassie Grace
Kelli Grennan
Kylie Hay
Merryn Major
Geraldine Mate
Maddy McAllister
Imelda Miller
Chris Michalas
Zoe McKinnon
Nicole Polzi
Sophie Price
Christopher Salter
John Stotchek
With thanks to the wider museum team for their support of Mangal Bungal: Clever Hands

CABAH researchers and team
Michael Kneppers
Kayla Turner-Kose
Ariana Lambrides
Ian McNiven
Jacqueline Wales, Communications and Media Manager, CABAH
Nathan Wright, Chief Operating Officer, CABAH

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