Warumpi / Papunya
Warumpi is a small Indigenous community of about 427 people and situated roughly 240km northwest of Alice Springs. It is now home to a number of Indigenous people mainly from the Pintupi and Luritja tribes.
Access to Warumpi is north along the Stuart Highway from Alice Springs then turn left at the Tanami Road. There is 246km of sealed road and 100km unsealed. All roads within this district are sand (unsealed) and become extremley slippery and boggy after rain. The dry rivers flow very quickly after heavy rains and will flow for days and up to weeks dependent upon the heaviness of the rainfall.
MacDonnell Shire Council Services
Services provided to Warumpi from the MacDonnell Shire Councilinclude:
Works - roads, parks and cemetery maintenance, waste management
Essential Services - Power, water, sewerage and airstrips
Tenancy - management, housing repairs and maintenance
Centrelink Agency, Community Safety (Night Patrol), Aged Care, Chilcare Services, Youth Development Services
In the 1930's Pintupi and Luritja were forced from their traditional country to the missions and government ration depots of Ntaria and Ikuntji. The extensive cattle graxing in these areas were straining the water sources and food.
In the 1950's the government built anohter water bore and housing at Warumpi to accomodate the increasing numbers of Indigenous people forced into reliance on settlements. At its peak in the early 1970's Warumpi has a popluation of 100-200, a mixture of Pintupi, Luritja, Walpiri and Arrente people. Warumpi was plagued by poor living conditions, health problems and tensions between various tribal and linguistic groups. These festering problems led many people, especially the Pintupi, to move further west closer to their traditional country. After settling in a series of outstation, the new commumnity of Walungurru was established about 250km west of Warumpi in theearly 1980's.
The Papunya Tula Art Movement began in 1971 when a school teached, Geoffrey Bardon, encouraged some of the men to paint a blank school wall. The murals spraked off trememdous interest in the community and soon many men started painting. In 1972 the artists successfully established their own company. The ais of the company is to promote individual artists, provide economic development for the communities to which they belong, and assist in the maintenance of a rich cultural heritage.
Major Language Group
Languages spoken at Warumpi is Puntupi-Luritja
Infrastructure and Community Life
Warumpi has a community store, school, police station, art centre, health centre and Lutheran Church.
We welcome any historic or current information that you know about this community to form part of this community profile.