About Felicity O’Connor
“As an abstract artist I’m interested in pursuing intelligent paintings that not only convey an energy and urgency, but that also have a considered structure created by using shapes, colours, forms and gestural marks. Painting for me is an opportunity to show the bare truth of what I see and feel about the world. I hope that in capturing these essences, my viewers feel a resonance in what they see in my work. “
Felicity O’Connor is a resident abstract artist in Sydney, Australia at Art Gallery on Darling, Balmain. Attending a Steiner School in Victoria as an adolescent, the creative influence there fed her passion for music and art. However, something was always missing…
Her tertiary education included an Arts degree at La Trobe University in Melbourne and then a Masters in Art Therapy at the University of Western Sydney. This led her into the field of psychology, completing her Post Grad from Charles Sturt University as a registered Psychologist.
She resisted the inner battle to be an artist for a long time, eventually giving in to it and delving into the world of life drawing for 3 years, but the stylistic qualities of abstract art was the genre that continually spoke to her spirit.
Like many of the abstract expressionist painters of the mid-21st century, Felicity generally uses acrylic and oils to explore line, depth and space to create her paintings. Depending on the creativity that overtakes her on the day, her mediums of choice can range from pencil, oils or acrylics on paper or canvas. Her heart and soul are given over to the work until it’s completed.
Felicity’s works are generally initiated from the environment around her. It can start with one or two vibrant colours that resonate with her. Painting daily within the microcosm of her home studio on the Central Coast of NSW, she will layer one main colour over another and ‘read’ the story using space, lines and shapes that reveal themselves to her.
Working with her canvas or paper on the floor allows Felicity to gain a certain freedom and spontaneity with the paint and mark making. This is important to the visual rhythm in the work and moves intentionally away from the traditional western perspective of a horizon line and closer to the Australian indigenous perspective which she finds more direct and energetic. She paints with an urgency and intensity, often using music in the studio to uplift her.
Felicity has had numerous exhibitions over 20 years as a professional artist, including an award history being a finalist in the Muswellbrook Art Prize, the Blacktown Art Prize, the Korea-Australia Arts Foundation, the Hunters Hill Art Prize, the Kings School Art Prize, and the John Viller’s Outback Art Prize. She has also been an eight times finalist in the Gosford Art Prize as well as many other recent awards and accolades.
One of her greatest achievements was to be awarded a commission of 75 works for the Sir Norman Foster Building, ‘Lumiere’, Regents Place, Sydney in 2006.
As a trusted and committed women’s advocate for representation in the art world, she mentors women conducting Art Retreats at her studio surrounded by bushland and water views. She has the rare ability to bring out the inner soul of women allowing them to be who they are, learn, grow and create the art that is within them.
Owners of Felicity’s artworks have said that they love the colours, the composition and the ‘looseness’ of the lines. For those that have commissioned work, they often feel it’s so special to have a one-off, custom made work in line with the atmosphere they are trying to achieve.
If Felicity’s abstract artworks and style intrigue you, speak with her to learn more.
Felicity O’Connor B.A. M.A. (Art Therapy) Post Grad Psych.
2019 ‘Things of natural origin’ Art Gallery on Darling, Balmain Sydney
2018 ‘My Wilderness’ Art Gallery on Darling, Balmain Sydney
2017 ‘Clouds & dirt: Australian landscapes’ Art Gallery on Darling, Balmain Sydney
2017 ‘Clouds & dirt: Australian landscapes’ Gallery Klei, Sydney
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2017, 2018,2019 Packsaddle, New England Regional Art Museum.
2016, 2017, 2018 Group show, Art Gallery on Darling, Balmain, Sydney.
2016 ‘A Social Landscape’, The Depot Gallery, Waterloo, Sydney.
2016 ‘Room for Art’, Gosford Regional Gallery.
2016 ‘The Yellow Board’, Fundraiser for The Cancer Council. The Space Gallery, Sydney.
2015 ‘Gestures’, Hunters Hill Art Gallery, Hunters Hill.
2015 ‘Elements’, The Depot Gallery, Waterloo, Sydney.
2015 ‘Women Beneath the surface’, Art Shine Gallery, Chippendale, Sydney.
2014 ‘Along Those Lines’, The Depot Gallery, Waterloo, Sydney.
2014 ‘4+1=1+4’ Group Exhibition, Gosford Regional Gallery.
2011 ‘Christmas Show’, Gallery 41, Woolloomooloo, Sydney.
2011 ‘The Way We See It’, Group Exhibition, Gosford Regional Gallery.
2007 – 2017 Annual 5 Lands Walk and exhibition, Avoca Beach, NSW.
2007 & 2008 ‘Art for Ethiopia’, Red Door Gallery, Sydney.
2005 ‘Abstract Works’, Red Door Gallery, Sydney.
2019 Winner – ‘Art in the Open’ prize
2019 Finalist – John Viller’s Outback Prize.
2018 Finalist – Muswellbrook Art Prize.
2019, 2018, 2016 Finalist – Hunters Hill Art Prize.
2018, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012, 2011, 2008 & 2006 Finalist – Gosford Art Prize.
2018, 2017 Kings School Prize
2016 Finalist – Australian Korean Foundation Art Prize (KAAF) (Judged by John McDonald).
2015 Highly Commended – Contemporary Art Prize.
2015 Finalist – Blacktown Art Prize (Judged by Edmund Capon).
2015 Finalist – Hornsby Art Prize.
2015 Highly Commended – Art Shine Gallery ‘Works on board’.
2012, 2000, 1999 Finalist – Waverley Art Prize.
2009 Highly Commended – Art in the Vines, Hunter Valley.
2006 Awarded Commission, 75 works for Sir Norman Foster building, ‘Lumiere’, Regent Place, Sydney.
2000 Finalist – Willoughby City Contemporary Art Prize.
1999 Highly Commended – Lane Cove Art Award, Lane Cove.
Rees, J. 2016. Contemporary Art Awards: Finalist Exhibition 2015. 23 January-23 June 2016, Contemporary Art Awards, Brisbane, Queensland.
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