A Selection of Works by Wellington Women

29 July to 29 August 2020

With Artistry, Mitchell Studios brings together the work of 23 inspirational women artists from the Wellington region. As a Wellington gallery run by two Wellington women, we are especially excited to present this exhibition. Our artists are a diverse group of full-time and part-time artists, working in a broad range of media from painting in oil, acrylic & watercolour, through to experimental drawing, printmaking, mixed media collage and sculptural ceramics. The exhibition showcases a wide range of styles from realism to abstraction – something to delight every viewer. The brief was simple: artists were invited to submit up to three works in any medium. Our goal: to fill the gallery with artwork by Wellington Women.

In the pipeline since late 2019, Artistry was first planned to open in May 2020 and has been delayed a couple of months by our Covid-19 lockdown. In some cases, this has given the artists an opportunity to create works in response to the lockdown experience. Lockdown highlighted the strength and resilience of the wider New Zealand community. Sadly, it again brought to our attention some of the more vulnerable groups within society who were in even more need of assistance during this time. Mitchell Studios would like to acknowledge and support the work of the Wellington Women’s Refuge and the Wellington Māori Women’s Refuge Te Whare Rokiroki by donating a percentage of gallery profits from this exhibition to these organisations.

SCROLL DOWN FOR THE ARTISTRY CATALOGUE and more information about the participating artists. The catalogue includes photographs of each artwork on display in the gallery. Please contact us for further information about any piece.

Artistry Catalogue and Artist Statements

Aimée McLeod

I am a potter living and working in Ngaio. The work I will feature in this exhibition was made during and as a response to lockdown. The tiny “dwellings” are built from paper thin casting slip. Very fragile at the working stage, nevertheless quite robust once fired to 1300 degrees.

Anna Stitchbury

Anna’s works tend to be bold and feature intense hues. She strives through the use of colour and texture to create rich, vibrant paintings that have an immediate impact for the viewer. “I am interested in the emotional response to a work.” Anna has been painting and exhibiting for the last 20 years or so and has had many group and solo exhibitions throughout New Zealand. She paints from her Wellington studio (open by appointment) and is represented by a selection of New Zealand galleries.

Annette Straugheir

I have a passion for creating art and a love of painting flowers, landscapes and portraits in watercolour and acrylic. I enjoy being immersed in creating a piece of artwork. The beauty of nature in New Zealand is my biggest inspiration, sunsets, sunrises, landscapes, flowers and people.

Beth Honoré

Beth Honoré is a multi disciplinary artist with a focus in painting and ceramics. Beth often works with themes of portraiture, nostalgia and pattern/texture within her artworks and ceramics. Beth works from her home in Khandallah, Wellington.

Carol Theologo

As an oil painter living in Wellington, New Zealand, I take inspiration from the native wildlife and vegetation. I specialise in painting birds, animals and landscapes. Native birds are a real passion of mine and I try to capture some of the magic I feel when exploring New Zealand’s wildlife. Painting since 2006 and being largely self-taught, I have expanded my knowledge through workshops, studying and experimenting. Over time I have developed my own style and technique, one that lends itself to imperfection. Sometimes I leave spaces that one might desire to give a more finished look, and by doing so, allow the viewer to complete the story. I am an active member of the Khandallah Art Group and the NZ Academy of Fine Arts. My work is exhibited at various galleries and art shows. I have work held in private collections throughout New Zealand and internationally.

Charlotte Hird

Charlotte finds inspiration all over the world in the beauty of nature and she loves moving paint and water on the paper to create magic. She teaches perspective drawing and painting workshops to artists to help create spatial depth in their paintings. Charlotte held a March 2020 solo exhibition at Bowen Galleries, Wellington, exhibits at the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts and is a member of Wellington Art Club and Watercolour New Zealand.

Debbie Jeffery

Debbie Jeffery is a local Khandallah artist and has been painting in oils for 15 years. As a local mum and Leadership Coach running her own business, she currently paints part-time but is always on a quest for more time and roses. Debbie is an active member of the Khandallah Art Group.

Denise Durkin

After many years I have arrived at the description of practicing artist and art tutor at Inverlochy Art School, where I have attended and contributed to the life drawing community there since 2001. After gaining a Diploma in Visual Communication Design from Wellington Polytechnic Design School specialising in Illustration (1987-89) I spent many years working in the graphics industry, giving me a strong compositional aesthetic. With a love of Independent scholarship and the support of the painting friendship with Patricia Fry, the 18+ years at Inverlochy have seen a change in direction to fine arts, with an increase in my dedication to building my skills in drawing, painting and printmaking. With a strong focus on the figure I have exhibited regularly and have been accepted into the Molly Morpeth Canaday Art Award 2014, 2015 and 2016, and the Parkin Drawing Prize 2014, 2016 and 2019.

Fran Zukowski

I am a local artist and love painting in oils and acrylics. My paintings are ethereal and I love using vibrant colours in my work. When I work, the painting evolves with no firm idea of the result. As it forms, I enhance and shape it until I feel it is complete. I have exhibited at multiple art exhibitions and galleries throughout the region.

Jill Alexander

My paintings are inspired by our Wellington life – the views, atmosphere and dramatic light. My passion for making an artwork to tell Wellington’s story is a pure delight. Also a talented jeweller, Mitchell Studios has had Jill’s Sterling Silver jewellery in the gallery for the last two years.

Jill Sutton

I am a largely self-taught artist and my preferred mediums are acrylics and pen and ink. In the last 18 months, I have also been working with collage and mixed media. The landscapes and buildings around Wellington and Porirua are my main sources of inspiration and are a subject that I return to time and time again. My work is photorealistic and the result of a painstaking process driven by a search for perfection! Originally from the UK, I moved to Wellington in 2001. I have previously exhibited at the NZ Art Show, Pataka, Thistle Hall and a variety of local exhibitions where I have won a number of awards.

Joanne Kreyl

A graduate of Wellington Polytechnic’s Diploma of Visual Communication and Design, Jo Kreyl has worked in many aspects of illustration, design and fine art and is proficient in a wide variety of media including acrylics, oils, watercolour, resin and sculpture. In her paintings, Jo is drawn to find the beauty in the ordinary or time worn. She is fascinated in the history of the objects and what may have gone on behind the scenes. Jo likes to think about the lives of the people who may have lived with and used these items. In choosing to paint these everyday objects Jo is elevating them to items of importance and freezing them in time like in a Victorian glass dome. This theme of making objects appear more beautiful than they are (kalopsia) runs throughout her work. Jo invites the viewer into her paintings to form their own connections with these items and so continue their story. Jo’s artwork is in many collections throughout New Zealand and Australia and some career highlights include winning the Visa Gold Art Award in 1991, illustrating 5 sets of stamps for New Zealand Post and most recently having a near sell-out show at last year’s NZ Art Show.

Judith Maxim

I paint mostly in watercolour, but I also work in ink and do wood block printing. The three pieces I have in this exhibition represent each of these mediums. I have painted for much of my adult life and regularly attend classes and workshops to further develop techniques and knowledge. I have a fascination with colour and pattern. I tend to paint what’s immediately around me and have recently done an Orongorongo series in watercolour. During lockdown, I dusted off my oil paints out and completed some South Island landscapes. I am an active member of several Wellington art groups and regularly exhibit my work.

Kylie Law

Kylie Law is a mixed media artist working full time from her Wellington studio. After 25 years in a corporate career she has fulfilled her dream of leaving behind the walls of an office and focusing solely on her art practice. Kylie’s work is based upon the beauty of nature depicted in abstract forms. She exhibits throughout New Zealand and welcomes commissions.

Lee Robinson

I am a largely self-taught artist and have been developing my painting practice for the past 20 years. I exhibit regularly and have completed many commissions. Acrylic is my preferred medium and I enjoy painting a wide variety of subjects in a realistic style. Still Life is a real favourite. I love to create works that celebrate objects which are rich in history and a link to the past. I can never pass an op-shop when there may be a treasure waiting to be discovered inside! I have recently moved from Wellington to Otaki Beach after many years of holidaying here with my family. I am loving the change of pace, the weather and the friendly, relaxed atmosphere.

Lindsay Blakeley

Having lived in Titahi Bay and Wellington for a number of years, I’m inspired by the changing colours and shapes of the land and seascapes in the area. Mainly working with acrylics, my Impressionist/Abstract style of painting allows for an instinctive interpretation giving freedom and boldness to my work. I have successfully participated in a variety of regional and group exhibitions including Four Ladies Who Paint – Pataka 2018 and Friends of Pataka Arts Awards and I am a member of and exhibitor at the NZ Academy Galleries – Wellington.

Morag Stokes

Morag Stokes is a Scottish Kiwi painter whose work is always innovative, experimental and process driven, typically abstract rather than representational. She currently works as an Artist Educator with GOLDEN Artist Colours, running a varied workshop programme from her Khandallah studio and in a variety of other locations nationwide. For the third year running, she has been selected as a finalist in the Parkin Drawing prize, with a drawing in graphite and Chinese ink. Examples of Morag’s drawing and painting will be on show in this exhibition.

Nikki Corbishley

Nikki Corbishley is a Wellington artist primarily known for her still life oil paintings. She employs the non-narrative traditions of formalism, focusing on her quest for compositional balance using objects gathered from her home and studio space. Her work encourages a closer look at an object’s materiality and form through repetition and rearrangement. Corbishley gained a BFA (Hons) from Massey University in 2004 and has been teaching art since 2006.

Philippa Woods

Pip Woods is a Wellington ceramicist, based in Ngaio. She has participated in group exhibitions in New Zealand and Sydney. Pip has been a finalist in the Portage Exhibition and has pieces held in the Wallace Arts Trust at the Pah Homestead. The pieces for this exhibition are inspired by the magical Basket fungus (Ileodictyon Cibarium) that Pip would find in the local Trelissick Park. Maori often referred to these as Tutae kehua, or ghost droppings, due to their sudden appearance, and often after a thunderstorm.

Samantha Walker

I’m a Wellington Artist, living and creating in the Khandallah/Ngaio area, always making cool, funky stuff or thinking about how to make cool, funky stuff. I own Sams Art House, an awesome little art school for kids, although it offers some fabulous adult classes as well. Sams Art House came out of my love for creating and wanting kids/people to experience the joy of creativity. I have always painted in my life. My paintings are often very different from one to the next. I love to experiment with style, colour, texture, shape. This is a reflection of my love for lots of different styles of art, nature, surroundings, furniture, architecture, people.

Sue Wickison

Sue Wickison was born and brought up in Sierra Leone, West Africa where her passion for natural history was nurtured by her father, a teacher, amateur botanist and artist. With a degree in  Scientific Illustration, Sue collected orchids in the Solomon Islands for Kew Gardens and has the honour of an orchid named after her. She travelled extensively and worked on illustrated books for the Agricultural and Forestry departments in the Solomon Islands, Nepal and Vanuatu, as well as producing over 50 natural history stamp designs for several countries in the Pacific, including New Zealand. Sue works as a freelance botanical illustrator and has paintings in many international collections. The Auckland Museum recently purchased a large piece of work showing the ecosystem of two highly endangered New Zealand species. For the last four years Sue has been working with Kew Gardens on the Plants of the Qur’an project, travelling to source species within the United Arab Emirates, Oman, the UK, Australia, Fiji and New Zealand.

Tania Hussey

Tania has always been interested in creating colourful beautiful art/spaces. Her time is now taken up with her interior design business (Tate Design) where she gets to be creative on a large scale. She still gets to dabble in painting and loves inventing the perfect colour combinations.

Vinny Thompson

Vinny started working with clay in 2001, making brightly glazed tiles with a Wellington theme. With a growing interest in sculpture, Tuatara became a favourite subject. While studying an NZSL paper at Victoria University in 2014, Vinny took the opportunity to observe the Tuatara in the enclosure on campus, hoping to add more lifelike detail to her work. Today’s Tuatara sculptures take on the characteristics of people, portraying aspects of family life. Vinny is a member of the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts. She exhibited in Solo 23 in 2006, and Solo 29 in 2010, as well as in many general exhibitions at the Academy Galleries. 2018 marked a return to full time art and culminated in a group exhibition in Wellington called “Landscapes We Walk”. Vinny is also a regular exhibitor on the Kapiti Arts Trail, and The New Zealand Art Show. Her work is in public and private collections in many countries around the world.