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Angus Wishart

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Angus Wishart's plein air painting in New Zealand


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I am a mostly self-taught artist working in the Bass Coast Shire/Bunurong Country.

As far back as I can remember, painting has always been there. My first form of artistic training began when I was still in primary school, attending after school classes with artist Janice Orchard. It was here where I learnt the basics of composition and colour, the fundamental principles which I came to understand innately and which formed the bedrock of all my progress to follow. I was naturally drawn to watercolour, and this was my medium of choice during those early years.

When finishing school I chose to pursue art independently, opting out of formal institutional learning. I travelled through Europe the year after high school and exposed myself to as much work of the great masters as I could.

Upon returning home, I set up a studio and devoted myself to learning the traditional techniques I had seen. Having begun with watercolour, I now taught myself to paint in oils. Although I did some reading of art magazines and books on the old masters, most of my learning was simply by doing. It was during this period where I truly understood the power of tone, and found my calling in tonal impressionism and the painting of light. This has continued to grow throughout my artistic journey; with every painting I am aiming to capture the light above all else.

In recent years I have been very fortunate to receive mentoring from Twenty Melbourne Painters Society artist Fiona Bilbrough, whose understanding of the direct painting and tonal observation methods has been invaluable to me. I have also been lucky to receive guidance from other living masters such as John Mutsaers and Robert Hannaford. Having only joined the Victorian Artists Society recently, I feel very humbled to exhibit in the same rooms as many of my forebears in the tonal impressionist discipline; the likes of Arthur Streeton, John Longstaff, William Dargie, W B McInnes, James R Jackson, E Phillips Fox, Percy Leason, Penleigh Boyd, and many other members of the Heidelberg School. It seems especially fitting, then, to hold an exhibition purely of plein air paintings here.

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Angus Wishart with his portrait of Hugh Sheridan titled Darkness and Light in oil

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Angus Wishart and his still life titled Sanctuary in oil

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Self portrait at 28, in oil

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Study of Odysseus in exile, in oil

Taking my practice from the controlled studio environment to the outside world changed my painting method dramatically; learning to paint en plein air brought my work to new heights. Outdoors I am forced to paint quickly with a controlled urgency before the conditions change, to reduce any scene down to its bare essentials. This has informed all my other work as well, including the portrait and still life. 

I feel I am still at the beginning of my artistic journey, and so the story ends here for now; I have so much more to learn and improve on. If you make it to see the show I hope very much that you enjoy it, and perhaps even feel inspired to take the easel outside yourself.

Exhibitions & Events by Angus Wishart

20240122_101932
Angus Wishart—Catching the Light
1 Feb 2024 – 29 Feb 2024

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