Geraldine Nangala Robertson-Rose was born in Darwin Hospital, the closest hospital to Lajamanu, an Aboriginal community in semi-arid country on the edge of the Tanami Desert, halfway between Darwin and Alice Springs. She is the daughter of Hazel Rose and Henry Robertson and the granddaughter of Shorty Jangala Robertson (1925-2014), a major Warlpiri artist from Yuendumu. Geraldine would travel back and forth with her mum and dad, from Lajamanu to Yuendumu, a remote aboriginal community 360 km south of Lajamanu and 290 km north-west from Alice Springs. She attended the local school in Lajamanu and Yuendumu and finished her schooling by correspondence when in Lajamanu. When she finished school, she worked for the school and in the library in Lajamanu. She continues to live in Lajamanu with her husband Steven Morton, leading a busy life working for the Store and caring for her four children.
Geraldine began painting with Warlukurlangu Artists Aboriginal Corporation, an Aboriginal owned and governed art centre located in Yuendumu, in 2002, when visiting Yuendumu. She paints her father’s Ngapa Jukurrpa (Water Dreaming), ‘Dreamings’ that relate directly to her land, its features and the plants and animals that inhabit it. These stories were passed down to her by her father and his father’s father, before him for millennia. “A lot of the time I’m busy working and caring for my kids. I love painting . . . it gives me the space to be myself. . . It reminds me of my family and I want to keep doing it.”