The Bulla Roar was most likely introduced to the Torres Strait Islands by Cape York the Aboriginal people to the south.
The handle was swung in a circular motion to create a whirling wind like sound that undulated depending on the speed at which the Bulla Roar was rotated.
It was used by groups of men on the beaches to create windy conditions conducive for sailing. Large numbers of people creating a louder sound would guarantee stronger winds.
Most implements of this nature, drums and other items were richly decorated with carving like the patterned bands and shells seen in the handle of the Bulla Roar. It would have been made from Ubar or Wongai wood and highly polished by rubbing it with a piece of the same wood.
The artist has used a ‘Tusche’ etching process to give the Bulla Roar an aged appearance.