'I try to perpetuate the traditional impressionist realism of the early Australian Heidelberg School of Artists while adding my own Zen energy and spontaneity in the all-important quest for capturing the light. I believe in seeing the big picture first when choosing a subject, simplifying the subject matter, balancing the initial draw-up, choosing subtle colours, using light, middle and dark tones consistently throughout the painting, setting a mood of light and magic then pulling it all together at the end. Mastery of this wonderful medium is life consuming, and my paintings hopefully catch the eye and draw the viewer in to explore further the simplicity of each brush stroke to give maximum impact.'
Amanda Hyatt grew up in the artistic environment of Eltham, site of the historic artists’ colony Montsalvat. At her secondary school in Ivanhoe, her year 10 art teacher, the watercolourist Nancy Clifton, impressed upon Amanda the ideas of the Heidelberg School of Artists. After an excursion to Charterisville in East Ivanhoe, the realisation that many of Australia’s turn of the century tonal-realist impressionists (Roberts, Streeton, and Withers to name a few) lived there over time and Amanda resonated with their ideas about tone, light and atmosphere and subsequently has spent most of her life aiming to perpetuate their art philosophies. Amanda paints in all mediums but prefers watercolour because of its ability to be taken to extremes. Her preferred subject matter is anything that has mood, light and movement rather than static portraiture and still life.
'Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia', Watercolour on paper
'Conversations On The Bridge', Oil on canvas
After completing a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Chemistry (inorganic, analytical, thermodynamics and quantum mechanics) and a Graduate Diploma in Education, as well as part time Fine Art at RMIT, she decided to pursue a professional career in art rather than the sciences. A professional artist for forty years, she has won over 100 awards including the 1992 Camberwell Rotary Gold Medal (Judged by Sir William Dargie), and eight other Camberwell section awards in addition to being a three-time finalist in the Camberwell Travel Grant. Amanda has also won the A.M.E. Bale Watercolour Art Prize, the Kenneth Jack Prize, and the Victorian Artists Society’s Artist of the Year Award, the Inaugural VAS Contemporary Art Award, and the recent Inaugural VAS 9x5 Exhibition 1st Prize 2023.
Her portrait commissions include Prof. Peter Doherty (Nobel Laureate for Science and Medicine), Sir Malcolm McIntosh (Chief Executive CSIRO, 1996-2000) and Prof. Robin Batterham (Chief Scientist of Australia, 1999-2005).
'Craig Hotel Ballarat Foyer', Watercolour on paper
'Hans Heysen's Studio', Watercolour on paper
Amanda has held forty solo exhibitions, and numerous joint exhibitions in New York, China, the UK, and recently in Rome. She also teaches both nationally and internationally including Italy, France, England, Ireland, and Antarctica.
Amanda was elected a member of the Australian Watercolour Institute, initially in 1992 then again in 2010; she is also member of the Twenty Melbourne Painters Society (1992), a member of the Watercolour Society of Victoria and a Signatory Member of the Victorian Artists Society. She is also a sought-after judge.
'The Roman Forum', Watercolour on paper
Amanda is also recognised as an educator and has been invited to write numerous articles in the 'International Artist', 'L’ Art de L’Aquarelle' and is a regular invited contributor to the 'The Artist, UK'. Her popular book “Watercolour: Tonal Impressionism” has been in print since 2016 and her work has appeared on the cover of art magazines in addition to the CDC publication 'Emerging Infectious Diseases'. She also has four APV Films teaching DVDs.
'The Artist in their Studio', Watercolour on paper
We would like to pay our respects to the traditional owners of the land on which our building stands, their leaders, past, present and emerging.