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11 Affordable, Emerging Painters To Start Collecting Now!

Art

There’s no shortage of incredible talent when it comes to emerging artists in Australia. But it’s not always easy to know where to find them!

We’ve put together a pretty killer list (if we do say so ourselves!) of our favourite up-and-coming young Australian artists at the moment. From abstract landscapes to detailed portraits, these are the artists to start collecting right now!

27th February, 2020

‘Sunday Morning’ by Lucy Roleff.

‘Satin and Blueberries’ by Lucy Roleff.

Artist and musician Lucy Roleff in the studio. Photo – Kim Landy.

‘Heirloom’ by Lucy Roleff.

Left: A Window. Right: Gemini by Lucy Roleff.

Sally Tabart
Thursday 27th February 2020

Lucy Roleff

Inspired by objects and arrangements in her daily life, Melbourne based Lucy Roleff taught herself how to paint from YouTube videos! Describing her style as ‘painterly realism’, Lucy likes to paint simple, domestic spaces that straddle the worlds of familiarity and grandeur. ‘I really enjoy the meditative practice of mixing colour and laying down brushstrokes’, she says. ‘There’s also a particular pleasure that comes when a painting starts to work – it’s very special!’

As if being a supremely talented painter wasn’t enough, Lucy is also a classically trained folk musician and composer! There’s a melodic feeling to her still life scenes as well – you can almost hear music drifting through an open window just out of frame. Dreamy.

Price point

Ranging from $780– $2,400

Where to find it

A TDF Collect solo show later this year… stay tuned!

Artwork by Bronte Leighton Dore. Right: Portrait of artist Bronte Leighton Dore. Photo – Robin Hearfield.

Bronte Leighton Dore

Bronte Leighton Dore paints landscapes, still life and portraits.  Her works are spontaneous and gestural, with an intuitive use of colour. Citing nature as her primary inspiration, Bronte’s work captures the ‘immersion of being in a moment’.

As a shortlisted artist in the prestigious 2019 Wynne Prize (the Archibald Prize’s cousin for landscape painting), Bronte is certainly on the rise!

Price point

Smaller pieces are $1,100 while the large scale works are around $4,800.

Where to find it

A solo show at Martin Browne Contemporary in April and Edwina Corlette Gallery in November.

Artist Charlotte Alldis in her Brunswick studio. Photo – Amelia Stanwix.

Artwork by Charlotte Alldis.

Artwork by Charlotte Alldis.

Charlotte at work in the studio. Photo – Henry King.

Charlotte Alldis

Young Melbourne-based artist Charlotte Alldis likes to make a mess. ‘My work is playful, silly and imaginative’, she describes. ‘It involves storytelling of characters and feelings’. Wobbly flowers, sunbeams and rainbows in wonderfully bright colours are frequent guests in her paintings, murals and textiles, bouncing into each other and welcoming the viewer with big grins and sleepy, starry eyes. 

Look out for a more in-depth profile on Charlotte and her work on TDF in next few weeks!

Price point

Varying depending on size and medium.

Where to find it

Charlotte and two of her best friends recently started their ‘Making A Mess’ workshop series for people to come together and explore mark making, constructing and creative expression, all free of judgement. Keep up with them via their Instagram.

Portrait of Charlie Ingemar Harding. Photo – Tim Hardy.

Charlie Ingemar Harding

Charlie Ingemar Harding’s artwork feels both casual and serious at the same time. There is a sincerity in his paintings – these are works that don’t immediately announce themselves, but draw you in the more time you spend with them. Like a comfortable conversation, without many words exchanged.

Working across a variety of different mediums, from oil paintings to raw textile compositions, It’s hard to pigeon hole Charlie’s style into a specific genre, because it changes all the time. At the moment, he’s found himself consumed by textile works. ‘The works are large and immersive, whereby the viewer can traverse freely across vast areas of material until reaching a loose thread or seam solidified in composition,’ he explains. ‘They sit in space, unobtrusive, quiet, breathing in and out contemplative air.’

Price point

Varying dependent on the work.

Where to find it

Charlie is building a body of textile works that he plans to show in the near future. In the meantime, keep up with him on Instagram

Artwork – Elynor Smithwick.

Artwork – Elynor Smithwick.

Artwork – Elynor Smithwick.

Artwork – Elynor Smithwick.

Elynor Smithwick

It’s hard to believe that Elynor Smithwick only graduated from her Honours year at the Victoria College of the Arts in 2019!

Her quiet, intimate oil paintings have a nostalgic quality about them – places that you might have been before, or scenes that feel a bit familiar. ‘The settings are usually in a time and place you can’t quite put your finger on’, Elynor tells. In her last two bodies of work, she’s looked to old family photographs as her anchor. ‘Usually I find my inspiration in small things, looking out windows, going on walks, returning somewhere, closing my eyes’, she says. 

Price point

Around $400 – $800

Where to find it

A group show of 12 painters at George Paton Gallery, opening on May 20th.
A joint exhibition in Mount Buller showing works created on a six-week residency from the Mount Buller Residency award, opening July 18th. And, a group show at Stockroom Gallery showing works created in Kyneton under the Macfarlane Fund residency, opening November 14th

Emma Currie working on a large piece in the studio. Photo – Amelia Stanwix.

Artwork by Emma Currie.

Artwork by Emma Currie.

Artwork by Emma Currie.

Emma painting in the studio. Photo – Amelia Stanwix.

Emma Currie

We first profiled Melbourne-based artist Emma Currie’s work in late 2019, ahead of her inclusion in our end of year show, ‘Art and Artefact’, where her painting was one of the first to be sold! Emma makes abstract figurative oil paintings, using bold, geometric shapes and colours to depict the female form. Dynamic and soft at the same time, Emma’s work is a beautiful balance of hard edges, and feminine fluidity.

‘I’m inspired by the geometric lines found in Picasso’s cubist work, and I often reference Matisse cut-outs’, Emma says of her key references. ‘I also love contemporary Spanish photographer Carlota Guerrero‘s work and find myself drawn to her Instagram feed when I’m feeling creatively blocked.’

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again – Emma Currie is one to watch!

Price point

Anywhere between $800 and $4000 depending on size.

Where to find it

A TDF Collect solo show… just around the corner!

Artwork by Gabrielle Penfold.

Artwork by Gabrielle Penfold.

Left: Portrait of artist Gab Penfold. Right: Artwork by Gabrielle Penfold.

Artwork by Gabrielle Penfold.

Artwork by Gabrielle Penfold.

Gabrielle Penfold

Gabrielle Penfold’s joyful work feels just like drinking a cocktail at sunset on a beach in Italy – bright, carefree and full of potential! Bouncing between still life and landscapes, and sometimes dabbling in abstraction, Gabrielle’s sweet scenes are inspired by traveling to places rich in history and culture. ‘It’s in those places ideas are fed to me’, she says. ‘I will always refer back to my photographs, sketches and books when in the studio.’

Price point

Smaller works start at $800

Where to find it

Contact Gab via her website.

‘Horse-tail sheoak beneath clouds’ by Ileigh Hellier.

’24 hours at Henbury Meteorites Conservation Reserve’ by Ileigh Hellier.

‘Small Trees’ by Ileigh Hellier.

‘Sky Trees Pool’ by Ileigh Hellier.

Ileigh Hellier

‘I’d describe my work as playful, colourful representations of the Australian landscape’, says Newcastle-based artist Ileigh Hellier. Her smudgy, colourful paintings depict loose representations of the natural world – not just what she sees in front of her, but what’s up in the sky and below the ground. Layers of topography are laid flat in a brilliantly fresh and elegant, yet childlike way.

There’s a little bit of abstract Ken Done present in Ileigh’s paintings – and as it happens, Ken is at the top of the list of artists she admires. Ileigh is a finalist in the 2020 Glover Prize, an annual art prize for landscape paintings of Tasmania.

Price point

Around $300 – $850 (and varied depending on gallery commissions)

Where to find it

You can see Ileigh’s work in the Glover Prize finalist exhibition, opening March 6th at the Falls Park Hall in Evandale, Tasmania.

An abstract group show at Allison Kate Bellinger Gallery in Inverell, NSW opening on March 12th.

A show Purple Noon Gallery on the Hawkesbury River, NSW, opening on April 4th.
A show at Back to Back Galleries in Newcastle, NSW, opening July 10th.

Artwork by Niah Mcleod.

Artwork by Niah Mcleod.

Niah McLeod

From a distance, Niah Mcleod’s paintings look like broad patterns in subtle gradient hues. Look closer and you’ll notice each tiny dot or line painstakingly pressed to canvas, to form incredibly powerful rippling movements. Inspired by the sky and the stars, water and the earth, Niah’s works are meticulous and moving.

As a mum of two kids, painting is what gives Niah a sense of belonging. ‘I feel like I can show the world just a tiny, beautiful piece of Aboriginal culture’, she describes. ‘I’m also very lucky to learn my native Language (dhurga) and to teach it to my children through painting, and that to me is everything.’

Price point

Between $550 – $14,500

Where to find it

A group show at Kate Owen Gallery in Sydney opening on May 9th.

Artwork by Seth Searle.

Artwork by Seth Searle.

Artwork by Seth Searle.

Artwork by Seth Searle.

Seth Searle

Seth Searle’s oil paintings including portraits, still life and interiors demonstrate excellent control of her medium. Her moody, quiet works elegantly highlight hand gestures, distortions through glass and pattern with apparent ease!

Seth finds inspiration in writers who explore the confines of gender roles, like Maggie Nelson and Virginia Woolf.

Price point

$900 – $1400

Where to find it

Seth will be in a joint exhibition with her good friend Lucy Roleff (see above on this list!) at BOOM Gallery in September.

Thea Anamara Perkins

Thea Anamara Perkins explores her identity as an Arrernte and Kalkadoon woman, but her practice also forms an investigation into art-making itself.

Thea brilliantly captures light and a surprising level of detail in the thick, broad brush strokes of her landscapes and portraits. Inspired by the art of Central Australia, she has worked with Tangentyere Artists including Sally M Nangala Mulda over the last couple of years.

‘I think of art as a forum of ideas, and creativity is a way of grappling with the vast abstract world’, says Thea.

Thea was listed for the Archibald Prize in 2019 for her portrait of contemporary artist and family friend Christian Thompson. An incredible feat for an artist still in her 20s!

Price point

Around $2,000 – $3,000

Where to find it

My Imagination group show on NOW until March 14th at Edwina Corlette Gallery.

**Please note that the price-guides quoted here are representative of the time of publication, and may be subject to change. 

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