Gloria Petyarre was born in approximately 1945 in the region of Utopia, located 270kms northeast from Alice Springs. Her language is Anmatyerre and her country is Aknangkere. Gloria is one of seven sisters who are also artists, such as the well-known Kathleen Petyarre, Nancy Petyarre, Violet Petyarre and Ada Bird.
Gloria first gained recognition as an artist working in the medium of Batik, exhibiting with other Utopia women in shows around Australia and abroad from 1977 to 1987. In 1988 Gloria took up the medium of canvas and painted her first work for CAAMA (The Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association) in the exhibition titled – “Utopia Women’s Painting; The First Works of Canvas; a Summer Project 1988 – 1989.”
In 1990 – 1991, Gloria traveled to Ireland, London and India as a representative of the Utopia women accompanying the exhibition “Utopia – A Picture Story”. The exhibition was mounted in Dublin at the Royal Hibernian Academy, Tandanya, Adelaide, and The Meat Market Gallery, Melbourne.
In 1991, Gloria had her first solo exhibition at Australian Galleries in New York and at Utopia Art, Sydney, where she had other solo shows from 1993 to 1995.