Warburton was established in 1934 as a United Aborigines Mission, where English was emphasised and Indigenous languages discouraged. As part of this policy, painting was not encouraged, unlike at Ernabella, also founded in the 1930s.
The Warburton Arts Project stimulated a cultural resurgence, expressed in the riotous colours of the 280 canvases that were produced initially for the community collection, and stored in separate men's and women's areas in Warburton Cultural Centre.
Most of these large canvases are painted right to the edge and feature layers of brilliant colours in multi-coloured dots painted by senior women.
Some of those women also made baskets as part of the successful weaving project initiated by the Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjarra Yankunytjatjara (NYP) Women's Council in 1995.
An alternative medium of art glass was developed at Warburton for the commercial market, but has largely been replaced by painting on canvas, particularly at outlying communities of Patyarr and Papulankutja (Blackstone).