Where did you grow up? How did it shape you into becoming an artist?
I grew up in Caulfield until I was about 12 years old and then we moved to a small hobby farm in Seville. I can’t really say that where I grew up shaped me into becoming an artist.
Did you choose your art subject or did it choose you?
I always loved art. It was just something that I always wanted to do. I was an anxious child and so growing up got in the way. While attending school and university, I decided to do “the sensible thing” and get a degree. So I put my dreams of being an artist on the back burner. I dreamed of having the time to paint and live an artist’s life as a kid. It definitely chose me.
After three years as a full time accountant, I couldn’t stand it any longer. I left to get an artist portfolio together and was accepted into the Victorian College of the Arts. Everyone said it was a brave move at the time, leaving behind a well paid job and education. I had no choice. I was miserable. Art was what I had to do.
What attracts you to your subject matter?
I’m a figurative painter. I am drawn to shapes and forms. The figure is the most challenging and intriguing subject. It is also completely unforgiving. If you get it wrong it shows. The human body is infinitely interesting. I am interested more recently in the figure and portraiture, together expressing emotions.
Over the last year I’ve been doing a number of self portraits. I reached a stage where I just wanted to look inward. I’d painted a lot of models in the past and needed time to myself. In the room with myself.
My painting “bound by the big red coat” recently won the Portia Geach memorial award in Sydney.
CIPI will be showing her work in the Castlemaine State Festival Open Studios program
Dates & Times : 17 – 19 & 24 – 26 March 11am – 5pm (opening night Friday 17 March 6 – 8pm)
Old St Mary’s Church, 129 Diggers Way, Elphinstone
For more information about Jenny’s work visit the James Makin Gallery website.