Mitjili Napurrula is a Pintupi woman from the Haasts Bluff region, located 200km west of Alice Springs in Central Australia.
Mitjili is half sister to renowned indigenous artist Turkey Tjupurrula Tolson (dec) and is also a custodian of the Kulata (Spear) Tjukurrpa story. She married Long Tom Tjapanangka at Papunya in the 1960's, and they lived at Aboriginal communities of Haasts Bluff and Mt Liebig.
Mitjili’s works are characterised by bold colour and strikingly original forms and she often depicts the country around Haasts Bluff (Ikuntji) in the Kintore Ranges. The iconography that Mitjili uses in many of her paintings represents the women's side of the Tjukurrpa story, showing the trees (Watiya) that provide the wood for spear shafts and other objects. Her brother Turkey Tolsen painted the Dreaming associated with the spear making itself.
Mitjili was taught her father’s dreaming by her mother and she considers this to be one of her most important connections to her father because her father’s country, Ulwalki, is where the trees are found that provide the wood for spear making.
In 1997 Mitjili Napurrula was a finalist in the 14th National and Torres Strait Islander Art Award and in 1999 she was awarded the 1999 Alice Springs Art Prize. She has exhibited widely throughout Australia and overseas. Sadly Mitjili passed away in 2019.