Born in the bush C.1970 Yukultji Napangati came out of the desert with eight members of her family and had her first exposure to western peoples and culture in 1985. She now lives and works Kiwirrkura, Western Australia and Kintore, Northern Territory.
Kiwirrkura is located in the Gibson Desert in Western Australia and is close to the sites of Marrapinti and Ngami. These two sites are associated with the stories that inform these paintings. In mythological times a group of ancestral women of the Nangala and Napangati kinship subsections camped in sites around the Pollock Hills during their travels from the Wester Desert. The camp sites in this painting and the water course in the top left are often a feature in paintings by Yukltji Napangati.
Marrapinti is a rockhole situated in a creek west of Pollock Hills. At Marrapinti the women made nose bones, also known as Marrapinti, which are worn through a hole in the nose web. These nose bones were originally used by both men and women but are now only inserted by the older generation on ceremonial occasions.
Prior to visiting Marrapinti the women gathered the edible roots of the bush banana or silky pear vine, Marsdenia Australis, at the site of Yunala. After leaving Marrapinti they stopped at the rockhole site of Ngami where they gathered wanguna seeds from the perennial grass, Eragrostis Eripoda. This was ground into flour and made into a type of unleavened bread.*Napangati’s recent paintings refer to seasons, significant sites, landscapes and ceremonies in the Western desert, using sinuous lines to describe sand hills and mushrooming shapes disrupting the dotted line composition to invoke the flowing water of the rain season.
*From a statement by the artist in 2005 for an exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, NSW
In 2005 Yukultji Napangati was selected to participate in “Primavera” and annual exhibition of selected young artists at the MCA.