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"The name Yunupingu means 'rock - rock that stands against time'. The name Yunupingu belonged to my grandad, like he was a hero in his time. It was passed down through the generations to my Father. It's a name that makes us understand who we are, where we're coming from and what our connections are to mother earth and the universe."


"Making money can be one thing. Building bridges can be the other one. All it takes is understanding now, to make that dream come true."


"We operate in two aspects of reality. One is restricted (sacred); the other is unrestricted (public). That's why I find it easy to come into the white man's world and operate, then go back to my world without fear of losing it. I'm using white man's skills, Yolngu skills and putting them together for a new beginning."

MANDAWUY, YUNUPINGU - explaining Yothu Yindi

"It's about people coming to an understanding, a realisation that we must bridge the gap, build bridges and make people aware of what's happening. The award gives me the kind of pride and understanding that most people wouldn't think of. It is strengthening the Yolgnu people, but it's also giving strength to Balanda people who otherwise don't have that kind of understanding..."

MANDAWUY, YUNUPINGU - on accepting the Australian of the Year award 1992

"My strongest memory of growing up is following my mother. Looking at her, observing her activities... She'd tell me things at night, bedtime stories around the campfire. Very important message stories that had meanings. They told you how to behave, how to respect that elder, that community leader. I have vivid memories of her giving me information, communication, giving me the freedom to think the way I think is the right way."

MANDAWUY, YUNUPINGU - 1960-2010 Australians of the Year, Wendy Lewis