Wally was born in Ernabella in 1953 where he was brought up by his family and attended the Ernabella school. Wally is fluent in the Pitjantjara language. At the age of 12, he moved to Armata but did not attend School. During his early twenties Wally learned painting, inspired by one of his friends who was a landscape artist. He still paints landscape paintings of his homeland.

Wally has four siblings, two children, and three grandchildren. All his siblings are artists painting acrylic on canvas.