aboriginal artist: Walangkura Napanangka

View artworks by Walangkura Napanangka

BORN: circa 1946 – 2014 (deceased)


Walangkura Napanangka was born about 1940 in the bush at Tjiturulnga, west of Walungurru (Kintore) – in the Gibson Desert, near the Western Australia/ Northern Territory border. Her family was amongst a group of Pintupi people who made their way to the Ikuntji settlement (Haasts Bluff) in 1956. They walked hundreds of kilometres from west of the salt lake of Karrkurutinjinya (Lake Macdonald) to access the supplies of food and water on offer at the settlement. The family returned to their homelands community of Walungurru in 1981.

Walangkura now resides in Kintore with her husband and fellow artist Johnny Yungut Tjupurrula. Her mother, Inyuwa Nampitjinpa and sister, Pirrmangka Napanangka, both deceased were also painters. Her father was Tutuma Tjapangati.

Walangkura began her painting career through participating in the historic Kintore-Haasts Bluff collaborative canvas project ‘Minyma Tjukurrpa’ in 1995. Her paintings exude a powerful energy, recreating the creation stories and ceremonial sites associated with the Tjukurrpa of her Pintupi homelands.

Failing eyesight in approximately 2010 meant Walangkura was unable to paint for the last few years of her life. She passed away in 2014.


Aboriginal Art Museum, The Netherlands.

Art Gallery of New South Wales.


Gabrielle Pizzi Collection.

Museum and Art Gallery of Northern Territory.

The Kelton Foundation, USA.


2005 1st prize Redlands Westpac Art Prize


1997 – 2002 Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs

1998 ‘Sztuka Aborygenow’ – (Art of the Aborigines), Warsaw, Poland

1999 Flinders Art Museum, Flinders University, Adelaide

2001 Pintupi, Alice Springs

2000 Papunya Tula: Genesis and Genius at the Art Gallery of NSW

2001 Dreamscapes – Contemporary Desert Art, Mostings Hus, Frederiksberg, Denmark

2003 Mythology and Reality, S.H Ervin Gallery, Sydney

2003 Solo Exhibition – Gallery Gabrielle Pizzi, Melbourne

2005 Across Skin – Women Artists of the Western Desert, Japingka Gallery, Fremantle