Narpula Scobie Napurrula

Narpula Scobie Napurrula

Date of Birth: c. 1957

Region: Haasts Bluff, NT

Language: Pintupi

Narpula was born near Haasts Bluff and grew up in Papunya after moving there in the 1960s with her family. Both her older brother Turkey Tolson Tjupurrula (dec.) and her husband Johnny Scobie Tjapanangka (dec.) were artists. She assisted her husband for many years in painting the background details to his paintings, but first began working independently in the 80s. In those early years she was the only female artist working in the Pintupi area. She is also the stepsister to Mitjili Napurrula. She now lives at Mt. Liebig with her family.

Narpula paints depictions of traditional bush foods and designs that relate to women’s ceremony. She also depicts the travels of the Rainbow Snake during the time of creation. “Wanampi” (snake) travelled underground and as it reached the surface it would create a waterhole, and each of these locations became sacred sites for ceremonial purposes. The markings of the snake became designs used for body decoration during tribal dance. Grid patterns represent the landscape, “U” shapes represent the women as they collect bush food sourced in areas shown as small concentric circles