Nicole Kelly creates paintings that linger between the essence of a subject and the experience of being. Her works are autobiographical expressions of recent experiences in Bundanon (NSW), Tasmania and Provence (France), functioning as tangible footprints along well-trodden roads winding through the artist’s memory. Clouded by the romanticism of remembering, these paintings are imbued with experience captured in vibrant strokes of colour and with swift brushwork. Informed by an interest in literature and the discipline of painting, Kelly’s works cast moments of shared stillness in an atmosphere of light.
Winner of the prestigious Brett Whiteley Travelling Art Scholarship (2009) and the Hurford Hardwood Portrait Prize (2018), Kelly is well recognised for her landscape, portraiture and still life painting. She has undertaken residencies in France (2019, 2018, 2017, 2010) and Spain (2016) and has completed major public commissions for the Sutherland and St George Hospitals in Sydney. Her work has been selected for inclusion in the Lester Prize for Portraiture at the Art Gallery of WA (2019, 2018, 2017, 2015), Portia Geach Memorial Award (2019, 2015, 2014), Salon des Refuses (2019) and Wynne Prize at the Art Gallery of NSW (2015). Kelly’s work is held in the collections of the Moran Art Foundation and Lismore Regional Gallery, among others. She is currently completing her Masters of Fine Art at the University of New South Wales where she is undertaking research in contemporary painting and poetic literature.