Mawukura was a Walmajarri man. He was born in a jiwari [small billabong]. In the hot weather time his mother went there to Punanangu from Wili (just to the north). His country surrounds Wayampajarti jila [permanent waterhole] in the north western area of the Great Sandy Desert. Mawukura grew up in the desert moving between the main waterholes in his country including Tapu, Kurrjalpartu, Kayalijarti, Kurraly Kurraly, Walypa, Wayampajarti, Kumpujarti and Witikarrijarti.
Mawukura was ‘nearly a man’ when his father took him to the station to escape a very large fire that was burning in his country around Tapu. A lot of people moved into the stations around this time due to droughts and bushfires. He went through law at Lumpu Lumpu and then went back to the desert with his father-in-law where he lived for approximately five years. The police came around there once he says but they did not pick him up, they gave him food. The police continued to visit but they were
frightened by kalpurtu [snake] so they kept going straight back into town. Not long after that, the same police picked up Huey Bent and took him to Cherrabun Station.
Mawukura eventually left the bush possibly in the early 1960s and spent most of his time working on Nerrimah Station.
His works have the signature characteristics of the great desert artists located between West Kimberley and Alice Springs, with their fine optical lines and concentric circles. He painted with only two or three colours applied over a single background colour. With this somewhat singular palette however, he managed to produce almost electrifying paintings that are full of movement and echo the illusion of heat, drought and fires, centered by waterholes. Many of the circles also reflect ceremonial dancing and song lines.
He passed away on 18th February 2013.