Wutharr, Saltwater Dreams

Across a series of flashbacks, an extended Indigenous family argues about what caused their boat’s motor to break down and leave them stranded out in the bush. As they consider the roles played in the incident by the ancestral presence, the regulatory state and the Christian faith, Wutharr, Saltwater Dreams explores the multiple demands and inescapable vortexes of contemporary indigenous life.
The film is the most surreal and near-psychedelic of the Karrabing Film Collective’s productions to date. It explores how the collective’s Indigenous filmmakers experience the containments of missionary-Christian moral codes as well as settler-colonial rule-of-law, and how these layer, displace, but ultimately are absorbed into ancestral territorial arrangements secured in sweat and through generational obligation.
by Elizabeth A. Povinelli
with Trevor Bianamu, Rex Edmunds, Linda Yarrowin, Rex Sing, Patsy-Ann Jorrock, Lorraine Lane, Robyn Lane, Sandra Yarrowin, Sharon Lane, Daphne Yarrowin
Australia 2016 English 29’ Colour


  • Trevor Bianamu (Trevor)
  • Rex Edmunds (Over)
  • Linda Yarrowin (Jojo)
  • Rex Sing (Rex)
  • Patsy-Ann Jorrock (Ancestral Spirit #1)
  • Lorraine Lane (Ancestral Spirit #2)
  • Robyn Lane (Ancestral Spirit #3)
  • Sandra Yarrowin (Ancestral Spirit #4)
  • Sharon Lane (Welfare Worker #1)
  • Daphne Yarrowin (Contemporary and 1952 Pastor)


Director Elizabeth A. Povinelli
Screenplay Karrabing Film Collective
Cinematography Natasha Lewis
Editing Elizabeth A. Povinelli
Sound Design Leandros Ntounis
Sound Leandros Ntounis
Production Design Sandra Yarrowin
Assistant Director Sandra Yarrowin
Production Manager Cecilia Lewis

Produced by

Karrabing Indigneous Corporation

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Karrabing Film Collective

The Karrabing Film Collective (est. 2008) is an award-winning group of some thirty filmmakers and artists who use their aesthetic practices as a means of self-organization and social analysis. Most Karrabing are Indigenous and live in a rural community in northwestern Australia. In the Emiyengal Indigenous language Karrabing means ‘tide out’. It refers to a time of coming together, as well as to the coastline that connects the Karrabing Film Collective as an extended family group across social lines. Their films and installations have been shown in biennials, film festivals, and exhibitions worldwide.


2012 Karrabing, Low Tide Turning; 14 min. 2014 When the Dogs Talked; 34 min. 2015 Windjarrameru: The Stealing C*nts; 36 min. 2016 Wutharr, Saltwater Dreams; 29 min., Forum Expanded 2017 2017 SeenUnseen Trilogy; video installation, 4 min. · Night Time Go; 31 min. · The Jealous One; 29 min. 2018 They Ben Jealous; video installatoin, 19 min. · Mermaids, Mirror Worlds; 35 min. · The Mermaids, or Aiden in Wonderland

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019