Desphina Nampijinpa Brown was born in 1996 in Alice Springs Hospital, the closest hospital to Nyirripi, a remote Aboriginal community located approximately 440 km north-west of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory of Australia. She is the grand-daughter of Margaret Napangardi Brown (Dec) and niece to Joy Nangala Brown, both Warlukurlangu artists. Desphina has grown up most of her life in Nyirripi, first attending the local school then moving to Alice Springs where she attended Yirara College, an Aboriginal boarding college in Alice Springs. When she finished school she returned to Nyirripi.
She began painting with Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed art centre located in Yuendumu. Warlukurlangu makes regular visits to Nyirripi to drop off canvas, paint and brushes for the artists and to collect finished artwork. When Desphina was young she would watch her grandmother paint and listen to her stories. Since returning to Nyirripi family members have encouraged her to paint. She paints her Grandmother’s Mina Mina Jukurrpa, stories that relate to her country, its features and the plants and animals that inhabit it. These stories have been passed down through the generations for a least 50 millennia.
When Despina is not painting she loves to play softball and basketball and travel to other communities to watch the Sport Carnivals. After the Carnival season she likes to go hunting for witchetty grubs and honey ants.