Tingari Cycle by Walala Tjapaltjarri

Walala Tjapaltjarri 'Tingari Cycle' 92 x 122cm .jpg
Walala Tjapaltjarri 'Tingari Cycle' 92 x 122cm .jpg

Tingari Cycle by Walala Tjapaltjarri


Walala Tjapaltjarri  c.1960

Acrylic on canvas

92 x 122cm

© Walala Tjapaltjarri licensed by Aboriginal Artists Agency Ltd


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Walala Tjapaltjarri is a Pintupi man born in the early 1960's at Marua to the east of Kiwirrkura in the Gibson Desert.  Walala arrived out of the desert with eight relatives in October 1984, making headlines as 'the last of the nomads'. Up until this time, the group had been following their traditional lifestyle in the country of Lake Mackay.   Walala may have started painting assisting his brother Warlimpirrnga, instructing him in the use of acrylic paint on canvas.  He began to paint his own works in 1986-1987. 

The subject of Walala's paintings is the 'Tingari Cycle', a creation time when ancestral beings, the Tingari Men, travelled over the Western Desert forming the land and creating rituals. They were followed by initiated novices who were taught laws and ceremonies and also followed by women and children . The travels of the Tingari are recounted in a multitude of song cycles but most knowledge and business of the Tingari remain in a highly secretive domain, privy only to senior men of the appropriate level of society and cannot be disclosed or recounted. Many of these sacred and mythological songs are associated the the artist's Dreaming sites.  Among them are eleven sites located throughout his traditional country near Lake Mackay such as Marua, Minatarnpi, Tarrku, Njami and Yarrawangu, including Mina Mina, a significant womens' ceremonial site where his family used to spend time.

Walala has gained worldwide recognition, participating in several national and international solo and group exhibitions. His paintings are represented in private and public collections in Australia, Europe and the USA.


Art Gallery of New South Wales, Australia

Gantner Myer Aboriginal Art Collection, Australia

AMP Investments, Sydney, Australia

Kaplan & Levi Collection, Seattle, USA

Kelton Foundation, Santa Monica, USA

El Paso Energy International Co, Houston, USA