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Rosemarie Murphy

aotearoa-artist-rosemarie-murphyPLAYING WITH LIGHT

As a child Rosemarie Murphy always loved drawing and spent most of her pocket money on art materials, but it wasn’t until she was in her thirties that she started to try other media and materials. “I have dabbled in acrylics, watercolour, pottery (hand-work mostly) and silk dyeing, but pastel is the one that I have worked at the longest. I was introduced to pastel by Maxine Thompson, Master Pastelist in New Zealand. My sister, Raewyn, invited me to one of Maxine’s workshops and like so many of Maxine’s pupils I was hooked.

Having had no formal training, Rosemarie learned by attending many workshops - some in watercolour and acrylics, but mostly in pastel. For a long time family and milking cows stopped her from making art full time and she would attend a workshop and then put her work away until the next one. “This is NOT the way to improve,” she states adamantly.

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UK Artist Tony Feld

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Painting a variety of subjects from buildings to wildlife, keeps Tony Feld busy.

“But my method is very much the same no matter what I am painting,” he says. “I usually square up a picture, so draw a grid on a print of a photograph I am working from. I transfer that onto the surface I am working on and go from there. Quite often a complicated painting can take anything up to a month to draw out, even before I have started painting.” Tony’s painting of a leopard took a month to draw out and another five months to paint.

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Siobhan Demeester

siobhan-demeester-aotearoa-artistMY HAPPY PLACE

From the moment Siobhan Demeester opens her eyes in the morning and sees the sun hit the top of the gum trees outside her window, she just wants to put those colours onto canvas. “Everything I see I convert it into a painting. I take my camera with me everywhere I go and am constantly taking photos to paint. Then when I go to bed at night, I dream about painting…quite obsessive really.” Obsessive or not, the positive feedback she receives from people and the fact that when she paints, she is in a very happy place, motivates her as well as winning prizes, being commissioned and selling her work.

Born in England and sharing her time between Australia and New Zealand, Siobhan completed two years at Gold Coast Art School between 2011 and 2013. When she moved to Russell Island, she saw a notice on the board at the ferry terminal, advertising a workshop with New Zealand Master Pastelist, Maxine Thompson, which she promptly signed up for and has never regretted.

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Ken Tanner

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ROOM TO MOVE

Brought up in the London suburbs and having studied art as a school subject, an enthusiastic teacher encouraged Ken Tanner to maintain his interest in art, which he has done for over 30 years. Training as an engineer and then working in construction management, Ken found there was not much room for creativity in his daytime work, so art as a hobby became a welcome respite, giving his creative mind room to move. He moved to New Zealand in 1974 but busy with his wife and children, and his work, he only really started to paint in the 1990s. Since then painting has become a large part of his life.

Ken’s inspiration, he says, is mostly to do with the creation of an image, rather than trying to convey some political message. “I really enjoy the realism but I did an abstract course some years ago and I now also enjoy developing the realistic image into a more abstract form.  I have entered some of these paintings into the Howick Art Group’s annual competition and they have taken 1st prize.  One of the judges, Evan Woodruff, said that the work was more abstractionism than pure abstract.”

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Sarah Pou

Sarah Pou - Aotearoa Artist - The New Zealand Artists Magazine

COLOURFUL AFFAIR

Studying Visual Communication at Unitec in Auckland from the early age of 17, Sarah Pou went on to have her art showcased in several high street art Galleries in Auckland and then later in London. She met her husband when she was travelling in England and her artistic career was put on hold in favour of consistent income.

After the birth of her first child she painted childrens nursery artwork and one of her customers proclaimed that she was an ‘illustrator’. This resonated with her and after returning to New Zealand and having their third child, she felt an overwhelming desire to create again, which she could not ignore. She started to develop her style whilst working and looking after her young family. “Time was very limited so I carved out time in the evenings. Although it was tiring, I felt fulfilled and content when I was creating.”

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Hiria Anderson

HiriaAnderson - Aotearoa Artist - The New Zealand Artists Magazine

PAINTER OF LIGHT

Hiria Anderson prefers to be known simply as Hiria, a preference which reflects her shy and retiring nature. Brought up with her grandparents who were practitioners of Raranga (weaving) and Whakairo (carving) she grew up surrounded by creativity, loving drawing and making things with her hands.

“I’ve grown up around creatives so it was a natural transition for me to make art my career. As a young person I remember wanting to become an artist so I didn’t have to talk to people. I was fearful of having a job in front-of-house, reception, or serving in a shop. Anything to do with people I didn’t want to do. Well, I’ve come a long way in thinking from back then.”

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Alfred Memelink

Alfred Memelink - aotearoa artist

Within the delicate touch of watercolour, Alfred Memelink’s love and admiration of the sea is clearly visible. His joy and wonder in the environments he portrays are clear in the lightness and pleasure of his colour range and composition which emits a sense of satisfaction and contentment. With an easy brushstroke, one gets a feeling of comfort almost giving us permission to forgive nature its dark side with its wondrous and supple beauty. Even his stormy works have a feeling of softness and fragility, yet evoke inspiration.

Self taught, while at sea, his work was developed whilst sailing between New Zealand and Japan, working as a marine engineer. Giving credit to the Pacific Ocean and King Neptune, he began an artistic journey alongside the one he was already on. Having already had an early introduction with a childhood flavoured with artistic parents and wanting a hobby during his voyaging, watercolour was the practical decision to begin his artistic endeavours. A leisurely diversion from the practicalities of living, these early exercises and a book, ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’ led to the decision in 1994 to leave the sea to paint full time and get ready for his first solo exhibition in a local cafe.

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Ben Woollcombe

Ben Woollcombe - aotearoa artist

DISTILLED INSPIRATION

After almost four years of studying Industrial design at the Wellington School of Design in the early ‘70’s, Ben Woollcombe realised industry was not such an inviting option when the alternative was that he could create things of his own fancy and have people appreciate them, even buy them. The motivation to become an artist came from being able to make his own decisions and “enjoy living by my own wit rather than swapping my time for a pittance, while manifesting someone else’s dream.” He loves being able to use his time as he pleases - fishing, entertaining friends, sailing, painting or digging the garden.

Ben always enjoyed the Geography & Biology sets during his early education through correspondence school, as they usually involved illustration of some sort. A high mark in art was his main reason for gaining school certificate. 

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Simon Kerr

Simon-Kerr-aotearoa-artistSIMON KERR

One-time member of the infamous Hole-in-the-Wall gang, prison escapee and activist, Simon Kerr has turned his remarkable talents to painting, creating a body of work which is both narrative and allegorical, the story of his life and redemption and a commentary on the place of human beings in the world. These works are often autobiographical in nature, exploring Kerr’s controversial history and his Devonport upbringing.

Simon Kerr gained notoriety in the 1980s when he set up the Hole in the Wall Gang (complete with t-shirts!). He also made headlines throughout the 1980s for numerous escapes from custody, including from Mt Eden and Paremoremo prisons. He stowed away on a cargo ship to Australia after escaping from Mt Eden in 1987. In 1994 he mounted a 13-day rooftop turret protest against remand conditions in Mt Eden that ended with the Armed Offenders’ Squad forcibly bringing him down.

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Cherol Filbee

Cherol Filbee - aotearoa artist

A PORTABLE OCCUPATION

Cherol Filbee has been heading in the arts direction her whole life. She loves being an artist. “I am never bored and my work is portable. My husband Peter, a top croquet player, enters tournaments all over NZ and likes me to accompany him. He knows I am lost without a project, so the deal is that I take my art work with me. When he played the world champs in London, I enrolled in a five day portraiture class at the Heatherly School Of Fine Art.”

Qualifying from The Learning Connection with honours in art and creativity, Cherol studied part-time, starting in 2010.
Awarded a scholarship for every year but one, she explains that simply drawing has become the basis of all her work. “I love faces and like to portray them as portraits or caricature in 2D and 3D. Cats have also featured quite a lot in my work. I like to challenge myself and work from life rather than a photo reference.”

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