In her works Walangkura depicts signs associated with the rockhole and cave sites of Tjintjintjin, just to the west of the Kintore community in the Western Desert.
The shapes in the painting depict the geographical features in the area through which an old woman, Kutungka Napanangka, passed during her travels from Malparinga in the north-west. At this site, Kutungka knew of an ancestral kunai (snake) that lived underground. She proceeded to dig a hole in search of kunai, eventually locating and killing it. She then cooked it and ate it before continuing her travels east to Muruntji, south west of Liebig.
At Muruntji, she was accosted by a group of boys, She chased them and caught all but the culprit who managed to escape. She killed the others and cooked them in a fire. She then traveled to Kaltarra where she entered the earth.
Walangkura Napanangka was born in 1946 at Tjiturulnga, west of Walungurru (Kintore) in the far west of the Northern Territory. Her parents were Inyuwa Nampitjinpa and Tutuma Tjapangati, who were also artists. Her sister Pirrmangka Napanangka (now deceased) was also a well known artist.
Her family was among 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 gain access to the food and water at the settlement. The family returned to their home country community of Walungurru (Kintore) in 1981.
Walangkura began her artistic career in 1995 by participating in the collaborative canvas project
'Minyma Tjukurrpa' between the Kintore and Haasts Bluff communities. She subsequently joined and began painting with Papunya Tula Artists in 1996. In 2000 she contributed to the large collaborative painting commissioned by the AGNSW for the major retrospective, Papunya Tula, Genesis and Genius (AGNSW, Sydney 2000). Until she passed away in 2014 she lived at Kiwirkurra with her husband and fellow artist Johnny Yungut Tjupurrula, both painting for a few independent dealers.
Aboriginal Art Museum, The Netherlands.
National Art Gallery of Australia, Canberra
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
Gabrielle Pizzi Collection, Melbourne.
The Kelton Foundation, USA.
Museums and Art Galleries of Northern Territory, Darwin
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