Walala Tjapaltjarri was born the late 1960s, east of Kiwirrkura in the Gibson Desert. They lived a very isolated lifestyle, having no contact with western people or modern civilization. He is the brother of well-known painters Warlimpirrnga and Thomas Tjapaltjarri,
Walala and his family group were amongst the last nomadic desert dwellers to leave the desert to join their kinsmen in the small settlements that had grown around the periphery of their homelands. They were named “the Last Nomads” and “the Group of Nine” when they appeared in the tiny community of Kiwirrkura in Western Australia in 1984. When the family came in from the desert it was a momentous event. Until then they had remained isolated from their relatives who had chosen to leave their desert homelands twenty years earlier. The group had roamed between waterholes around Lake Mackay, along the border country between Western Australia and the Northern Territory. Their diet was dominated by goanna and rabbit and bush-foods harvested from native plants.
Walala paints 'Tingari' or 'Men’s Creation Dreaming’ - it is a story of creation from the Western Desert region. It portrays the ideology of ancestral spirits who journeyed far and wide through the Western Desert, performing site-specific sacred rituals to form new land and law as we see it today.
He can often be seen painting at Hoppy's Camp, outside Alice Springs. He lives between Kiwirrkura, Alice Springs and Yuendumu, where his wife is from.