Deborah Napaljarri Wayne was born in 1976 in Yuendumu, a remote Aboriginal community 290 km from Alice Springs in the NT of Australia. She is the daughter of Lee Nangala Gallagher-Wayne and the Granddaughter of Mary Napangardi Gallagher, both artists who paint with Warlukurlangu Artists art centre. She is married to Peterson Jakamarra Walker, an artist also.
Deborah went to Yarara College, an Aboriginal boarding college in Alice Springs and when she finished her schooling she returned to Yuendumu. Deborah was quite young when she first started painting for Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed art centre located in Yuendumu. She paints her grandmother’s Jukurrpa, Dreaming stories about the land, its features and animals. It was her grandmother that taught her to paint her Jukurrpa.
Deborah loves to paint and chooses black, red, grey, brown and green as her palette, colours that reflect the colour of the land.