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Kelly Southee is a New Zealand born, Brisbane based artist. She spends time between both these places to visit family on either side of the Tasman Sea.
Natural and built landscapes remain a strong theme in her work. She aims to highlight the places and spaces we inhabit, love to admire, or escape to: our homes, important buildings and streetscapes, and striking mountain and wilderness areas.
As a former interior designer Kelly has a keen interest in capturing the meaning of places. She feels a sense of urgency to honour our character-filled buildings and their precious green spaces, as they disappear to make way for redevelopment projects, especially in our suburbs.
Kelly finds delight in the often overlooked elements within our urban environment, such as what she has named ‘Absurditrees’: strangely shaped trees hugging road edges and severely sculpted by traffic into weird forms.
And to counterbalance the stresses of life Kelly turns her focus to homely still life subjects, by capturing the characters in our fresh seasonal produce in quirky foodie still life works like 'Nosey Lemons', 'The Citrus Family' and 'Posh Pears'.
2015 Nundah Village Festival Art Prize: ‘Nosey Lemons’ First Prize Still Life
2014 Nundah Village Festival Art Prize: 'Radishes in Yellow' Still Life Runner Up
2013 Nundah Village Festival Art Prize, ‘Holy Bloom’ First Prize Landscape
2017: 'Kelly Southee: From New Zealand to Stanthorpe', Stanthorpe Regional Art Gallery, Stanthorpe, QLD
2016: 'Home Is Where the Art Is', with Renate Martini-Jacobi, The Pool Studio, Annerley, Brisbane
2015: ‘The Skies that Bind Us’ – with Alan Morrison and Melanie Playle, The Pool Studio, Annerley, Brisbane
2015: ‘Our Places – A Record’, The Pool Studio, Annerley, Brisbane
2014: ‘Poolside’ Landscape & Still Life Exhibition, The Pool Studio, Annerley, Brisbane
2013: ‘Playing with Food’ Still Life Exhibition, Sprout French Café, Auchenflower, Brisbane
2013: ‘Absurditrees’ Landscape Exhibition, Sprout French Café, Auchenflower, Brisbane
2012: Pop-Up Exhibition at ‘Fashion in the Garden’, St Joseph’s Catholic School, Kangaroo Point
2012: ‘A Year after the Brisbane Flood’ Landscape Exhibition, Brisbane City Council Library, Fairfield
Kelly's work has been shown in the Lethbridge Gallery $10,000 Small Scale Art Prize in 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013; the Rotary Art Spectacular, Brisbane City in 2017, 2016, 2015, Stanthorpe Regional Art Gallery in 2017; Ewart Gallery, Willoughby, Sydney in 2014.
Selected Group Exhibitions:
2015 ‘Peace & Quiet: QANZAC 100 Memories of a New Generation’ – State Library of Queensland
2014 Flinders Ranges Group Exhibition ‘Moolooloo Station & Beyond’, Ewart Gallery, Willoughby, Sydney
2002 ‘Top of the World & Poles Apart’ Exhibition with photographers Len Phillips & Anne Dowd, The Art House, Newstead
Kelly's work is in corporate and private Collections in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the USA, and Sweden.
Visit Kelly's website here.
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