Annee Kelly BA
Born in Alexandria, Egypt in 1949, with French being spoken at home, Annee completed her schooling at a French College, the College Sainte Jeanne Antide de Besancon. Her penchant for drawing and painting however, developed at a very early age and she was constantly involved in artistic activities, winning several art competitions whilst still at school.
Annee arrived in Australia in 1969 to complete her education, obtaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree, in addition to a Secondary Teacher's Training Certificate. She began to work as a language teacher and later married and had two daughters. After the second of her children commenced primary school, Annee was encouraged to devote herself once again to her art. She was soon painting full time, initially in Oil, Gouache and Pastel, but she soon discovered Watercolour. She immediately felt a strong attraction to this medium, enjoying its transparent, fluid and unpredictable qualities.
In 1985, her work was exhibited for the first time in a metropolitan gallery. Recognition was to follow very quickly. Over the ensuing years, she was to refine her skills under the guidance of tutors such as Gunther Kalbitzer, Ron Muller and the late Rick Rowton. Annee however, continued to attend Watercolour demonstrations and numerous workshops conducted by well-known Watercolour artists. During this time, she developed a unique and distinctive style, characterised by sensitive renditions which captured the charming and mysterious qualities of her chosen subjects.
Annee loves painting on location when the feelings the subject arouses in her are the strongest. The range of subject matter which she paints is extensive, drawing her inspiration from the Australian landscape with its beauty and diversity, as well as from trips overseas, mainly to Europe. She is also lately using her art as a vehicle for social commentary.
Annee has won many awards and commendations and her work features in countless private collections both in Australia and overseas in addition to having her work exhibited in numerous galleries of prominence. She is a highly acclaimed teacher and published artist, is passionate about her art and enjoys sharing her knowledge and imparting her enthusiasm in well attended demonstrations and workshops. Presently, Annee teaches watercolour classes at the Mentone Mordialloc Art Group. Additionally, she has conducted ten consecutive workshops in France and Italy, where her language skills (French, Italian, Spanish) coupled with her training as a school teacher have served her well. She has participated in numerous group shows, has had 17 solo exhibitions and taken part in several overseas exhibitions.
Annee is highly regarded amongst her peers and has been awarded the title of Fellow of both the prestigious Victorian Artists Society and the Guild of Realist Artists. In addition to the Victorian Artists Society (VAS) and the Australian Guild of Realist Artists (AGRA), Annee is also an active member of the Watercolour Society of Australia (WAS), the Melbourne Society of Women Painters and Sculptors (MSWPS) where she acted as Secretary for two years, the Mentone Mordialloc Art Group (MMAG), the Beaumaris Art Group (BAG), the Sherbrooke Art Society (SAS), the Brighton Art Society (BAS) and the Women's Art Register (WAR).
Annee features in 50 Australian Artists Vol 1, Artists Ink (1994) and has been published in the Australian Artist Magazine (May 2002, April 2007, September 2012, August 2016, December 2018) in addition to the VAS Journal, the Hues Magazine, Watermark and Art Edit Magazine.
“Painting is an integral part of my life and a wonderful journey which has allowed me to see many beautiful places and meet with amazing people, whilst broadening my artistic knowledge by the countless visits to renowned galleries around the world.
I love painting on location when the inspiration is still strong. However, sound draftsmanship and understanding of the concepts of composition and design, tonal range and pleasing colours, are paramount concerns of mine. I am also captivated by the effect that light can have on a particular subject and the manner in which it transforms it, whether it be a silhouetted perched village in France seen against the light, an intimate courtyard in Italy bathed in the rays of a midday sun, or the softness of dusk imbuing the majestic vista of the Australian outback. I constantly seek to communicate this through painting, in the realisation that our world is a truly beautiful and precious place. The challenging capricious and fluid nature of watercolour remains my main mode of expression and I am constantly seeking improvement, chasing the illusive masterpiece."
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