Bugai is a Kartujarra woman and a senior custodian of the lands surrounding Kunawarritji (Canning Stock Route Well 33). She was born in the 1940s at Pukayiyirna, on present day Balfour Downs Station, though her parents soon travelled northward with her through Jigalong and Nullagine toward Kunawarritji.
Bugai continued to live nomadically with her family and later with her husband before eventually deciding to move to Jigalong Mission. From Jigalong, Bugai moved to Aboriginal Communities in Strelley, Punmu, and Parnngurr before relocating to Kunawarritji Aboriginal Community in more recent years, where she continues to live today. There she was taught to paint by renowned artists Nora Nungabar (Nyangapa) (dec.) and Nora Wompi (dec.). The three women painted together as often as possible.
Bugai won the General Painting Award at the 2021 Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards, the 2012 Bankwest Contemporary Art Prize and Hedland Art Award, and the 2010 Western Australian Indigenous Art Award. Her work has been collected by the National Museum of Australia, the National Gallery of Victoria, and Queensland Art Gallery’s Gallery of Modern Art.