It has been suggested that Dinny’s date of birth predates the Coniston massacre of 1928, Born c 1922 – 1925.
His place of birth was west of Mount Allan, close to what is now present-day Yuendumu. Dinny spent many years working as a stockman across the Territory before arriving in Papunya in the mid 70’s. As a senior law man for the Warlpiri people, he was recognised as a leader of Rainmaking and Water Dreaming ceremonies. He oversaw other corroborees and painted the bodies of those taking part in the ceremonies and he was renowned for his hefty singing voice. Dinny was a highly respected elder of the Anmatjera and Warlpiri group. When, under the guidance of Geoffrey Bardon, a group of artists began producing paintings in Papunya, Dinny Nolan joined the painters. His older brother Kaapa Tjampitjinpa, and his two cousins, Billy Stockman Tjapaltjarri and Clifford Possum Tjapaltjarri, were also members of this group. Dinny Nolan’s art was characterised by his predominant use of natural ochre colours, and the designs he utilised were the same he painted on the bodies of men taking part in ceremonies.
Dinny’s transition to the Papunya painting group was smooth. In 1977 as part of the Papunya Artists he travelled to exhibitions of his work in various galleries in Melbourne, Victoria. One of his designs has been constructed and is used in stained glass in one of the windows at the National Gallery of Victoria.
In 1981 on travelling to Sydney with Paddy Carrol he constructed the first sand painting ever seen outside of Central Australia. His work and his manner has left a strong and indelible impression on Paddy Carrol. Dinny travelled extensively throughout the U.S.A. He attended various American indigenous conferences and exhibitions as a guest of the American native tribes people. He has shared his culture with them in many forms.