Nancy Ross Nungurrayi

Nancy Ross Nungurrayi

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DOB: c.1935 - 2009
Born: Maya, Kintore, NT

Nancy Nungurrayi was born at Maya, north west of Kintore around 1935. As a small child she lived with her parents at Wala Wala, west of the Kiwirrkura Community. She lived in this area after she was married and when her husband passed away, she walked to Papunya carrying her first child, Marlene Nampitjinpa.

Commencing painting for Papunya Tula artists in 1996, Nancy and her older sister, Naata Nungurrayi, with eight other women from Walunguru, took part in a collaborative painting, which was exhibited at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 1999.

Nancy has a distinctive technique and uses the large 'U' shapes in her artwork to represent the body paint designs painted on womens' breasts when taking part in the womens ceremony.

Nancy passed away in 2009.


  • Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
  • National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
  • Australian National University, Canberra
  • Hank Ebes Collection, Melbourne
  • The Luczo Family Collection, USA

Awards and Recognition

2001 18th NATSIAA, Museum and ARt GAllery for the Northern Territory, Darwin - Finalist


Selected Group Exhibitions:

2019 Defining Tradition: the first wave & its disciples, Kate Owen Gallery, Sydney
2005 Decouvrir, Rever, Investir, Australian Embassy, Paris France
2004 Peintres Pintupi, Galerie DAD, Mantes-la-Jolie, France