Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that the following pages may contain images or names of people who have since passed away.

Barbara Tjikatu Nipper

Barbara Tjikatu Nipper

Barbara or Tjikatu is a Senior Elder of Mutitjulu Community.

She is experienced in many areas of research, land management, tourism and the arts and feels strongly about the traditional knowledge which she can pass on to visitors. She has been a spirited cultural ambassador since the 1980s when her late husband was a traditional owner lobbying for the hand-back of Uluru, She has also acted as a long term advisor for Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

Barbara was a member of the first National Park Board of Joint Management and has worked in almost every aspect of the park. Her roles have included manual labourer, prime mover behind the establishment of the Cultural Centre and three park businesses and as a negotiator with Australian Government and Northern Territory ministers. Now retired as a Senior Cultural Ranger with the Park’s Public Education Department, she continues to work as a consultant to the National Park and is a strong advocate in community affairs.

In 2006 Barbara received one of the nation’s highest honours, Member of the Order of Australia, ‘For service to the Indigenous community of the Northern Territory as an Anangu Elder, and in the preservation and management of the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.’

As an artist she is an experienced carver of traditional women’s tools and contemporary animal forms. In 2008 she began working with felt, translating her Tjukurpa with equal passion in the new medium.

Barbara resides in Aged Care at Mutitjulu community.

Her work is held in the collections of the Museum of Victoria, Melbourne, National Museum of Australia.

1986, The Third National Aboriginal Art Award Exhibition, Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin 1999, Die Welt Der Aborigines, Munich, Germany 2008, Desert Mob Show, Araluen Galleries, Alice Springs Cultural Precinct, NT