Elsie Napanangka Granites was born in 1959 in Yuendumu, a remote aboriginal community in the Northern Territory, 290 km north-west of Alice Springs. Apart from two years spent in Adelaide, South Australia, with her sister’s family, Elsie has spent her whole life in Yuendumu and is an active member of the community. She has worked in many of the aboriginal owned and governed organisations including the Women’s Centre, The Old Peoples Program, Womens Night Patrol, and Warlukurlangu Art Centre, where she worked in the preparation of canvases and paint.
Elsie has been painting with Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed Art Centre, since 1987. Elsie paints various Dreaming stories but the one she has consistently painted since 2007 is her father’s dreaming, Jayinki Jukurrpa, dreaming relating to Janyinki, country close to Yuendumu. Although this jukurrpa is often associated with men’s ceremonial activity in that country it is also related to sites where women travelled to collect bush foods. Janyinki is Elsie’s traditional country. Her work has been included in numerous exhibitions of Aboriginal Art.
Elsie has three children, many grandchildren, and one great grand- daughter who she helps to bring up. She also teaches them her dreaming stories that have been handed down to her from her own parents and their parents and so on for millennia, stories which relate to her country , its features and the animals and plants that live on it.