Maldives residency 2016
Artist . Illustrator . Educator
I’m an Australian contemporary artist fascinated by the ocean, beach life and sailing.
Growing up in the coastal town of Point Lonsdale, Victoria, I explored the rockpools and played in the surf. In Summer the town would transform into a circus of holiday makers and locals enjoying the beaches and the iconic Lighthouse and Pier.
After completing secondary school, I studied at university in Melbourne. I later worked in advertising. Returning to Point Lonsdale after six years in the city, I viewed the area with fresh eyes. The quaint and fun tourist attractions were everywhere; from Queenscliff’s fishing and boat-building heritage and steamtrain railway to the beach resort of Point Lonsdale, inspiration abounded. I hand-painted t-shirts and beach wear to sell at the Queenscliff Market and later in a tiny shop in its main street. Tourism businesses in the area also commissioned my art for logos and illustrations for print promotions.
In 1998, I was invited to create illustrations for Tourism Victoria in booklets, posters and on a touring coach, for 2 consecutive years. Many commissions followed on, around the Melbourne region.
In 2001, I won the Taste of Wine Award at Flinders Art Show, Mornington Peninsula. The award was sponsored by Elgee Park winery and judged by the Director of the Geelong Regional Art Gallery. I later contacted the owner of Elgee Park, Baillieu Myer, who had purchased my winning art piece titled The Pickings. He granted me time to create art at Elgee Park during the grape harvest and watch Dubbo the Breaker work with the Park’s beautiful quarterhorses.
Around 2004, Aspects Gallery, Blairgowrie, exhibited my yacht paintings. The town has an impressive marina and lovely beaches. My works were popular and I gained a following both on the Mornington Peninsula and in Melbourne.
In 2007, Hamilton Island Gallery, in the beautiful Whitsundays, showed my paintings and offered me my first residency in 2008, the 25th Anniversary of the island’s Race Week. A quote posted to my Twitter account by a US sailor read, “you paint what it is to sail”. I have since spent 12 years exhibiting and teaching on the island.
I have also participated in group exhibitions internationally, in Italy and France, during 2012 -2013, and London in 2015.
In 2016, I was invited to exhibit and teach at a resort in the Maldives. The buyers of my art came from countries across the globe. The photograph shown above was taken in the Maldives during my 3 month residency.
It is very satisfying to know that my paintings are held in private collections around the world.
In the studio, I love playing with vivid colours and loads of texture. Acrylics are my favourite paints. I’ve also used oils on canvas, and gouache and watercolour on paper. My two loyal sausage dogs watch over my activities.
In 2017, I moved from my Ocean Grove studio of nearly 20 years, back to my hometown of Point Lonsdale. It feels as if I have never been away! Every day I view the beautiful sea and sky in all its moods and colours, and watch the shipping navigate The Rip, the dangerous entrance to Melbourne’s Port Phillip Bay.
Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/JaneKempeArt/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/jane_kempe_art
Image courtesy of Art Edit magazine