Christine Lawrence Artist – Up Close & Personal

Christine Lawrence Studio Photos 1

Established realist artist Christine Lawrence is drawn to the magical illusions that can be created on the surface of the picture plain. She captures the essence of her subjects, using them as a vehicle to study light, colour, form, space and reality.

Christine’s artistic career started in South Australia, where she studied then taught visual arts for over 20 years, whilst at the same time developing her own visual art career, until in 1984 she began working full time as a painter.

In 2016 Christine had a life change, moving from the Adelaide city to Wanarra Station in the Central West of WA. She is in awe of the vastness and varying landscape in Wanarra and has an endless source of inspiration.

In the below Q&A, Christine Lawrence tells us a little more about herself.

Enjoy Getting to Know Christine Lawrence

When did you first feel the desire to be artistic and realize you had talent?

From a very early age I was encouraged to draw and paint. Art has always been part of my life.

Where did you learn your art?

My mother was very talented, providing lots of inspiration, help and criticism. My focus was always on improving my artwork at school, at art school, working with other artists, observing and studying. One never stops learning.

What inspires you most?

The natural world. The play of light, the impact of colour, vast spaces, the surface of water, the unique qualities of animal life.

What message are you sending to the viewer of your art?

Focusing their attention on that which inspired me. Providing an image for contemplation, to see the beauty that is all around, sometimes found in the most simple subjects.

Describe your studio

A comfortable, light room in the homestead with French doors looking out into the garden. Birdsong all around.

The landscape is also my studio. Wanarra stations 1000 square kilometres present a wide array of terrain, huge granite outcrops, vast salt lakes, massive salmon gums, ancient york gums, acacia scrub, beautiful expanses of water after the rain and masses of wild flowers in a good season.

Describe your typical day of creating art

I’m a planner and very disciplined. There are always chores, animals to feed, garden to look after, so if I’m set up and painting by 9:00 I’m very pleased and will usually aim for about 5 hours painting a day once a subject is underway.

Some days I’m out collecting subject matter in the early or late light.

I always have my camera at hand to capture that special moment, being in the right place at the right time. Through painting I can enhance that which inspired me, distilling the essence of the subject

I spend a lot of time deciding on composition, then once the subject is drawn up I will block it in with lively underpainting or an overall colour that can glow through or add texture beneath the layers of detail. Each part of a subject is a different problem to be solved… how to create that magical illusion of light and reality. It is challenging and rewarding. Time flies!

Working en plein air when weather and insects permit, demands a more direct approach, working quickly to capture the everchanging subject. It is wonderful to be still in the environment for an extended period of time, birds and animals unaware that you are there, passing time marked by the moving shadows.

What mediums do you use and why?

I often combine oil and acrylic when working on Belgian linen, or wooden panels. Acrylic for the underpainting as it is fast drying, oil for the subsequent layers as it is sumptuous, beautiful to manipulate, be it in transparent glazes, blending wet in wet or adding final detail with impasto.

Gouache and water colour also have appeal, particularly when working quickly en plein air

I have recently begun drawing with charcoal and chalk, loving the intensity of the black and white image and the great range of tone that can be achieved.

What are you working on now?

A series of small studies of the Boranup Forest in oil on Birchwood panels aiming to capture the grandeur of these magnificent trees and the play of light through the forest, following a visit to Margaret River. Such a contrast to the central West

What are your recent career achievements you feel proud of?

My work with children as a visual arts teacher. Opening the Dalwallinu Arts festival as featured artist and speaking on the importance of art in our lives. Being true to myself as an artist not influenced by trends. Winning the Art Excellence Award and Agricultural Art Award at the Carnamah Art exhibition.

 What do you love most about what you do?

I was born with a talent and to be able to spend every day using it is a gift, so satisfying. Creating three dimensional effects on the surface picture plain. Illusions of space, form and light. It’s magical.

Where can you see yourself in 10 years time?

Who knows. Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. My aim is to enjoy every moment.

Christine Lawrence – Artist Biography

Christine Lawrence was born in Adelaide South Australia in 1951 and was encouraged to pursue her interest in art from an early age. She studied at the South Australian School of Art and Western Teachers College, obtaining an Advanced Diploma in Secondary Teaching, Fine Art. Geoff Wilson, South Australian landscape painter and lecturer in painting and design became a great inspiration in his approach to colour, composition and methods for analysing and representing the visual world. During 11 years as a Visual Arts teacher in secondary schools Christine always made time for her artwork. The River Torrens, Adelaide Botanical Gardens and landscapes of the Fleurieu Peninsular provided an array of subject matter for large realistic paintings. In 1984 she began painting fulltime and took part in numerous painting trips to outback stations, Wirrealpa, Martins Well and Gum Creek in the Flinders Ranges, Siam in the Gawler Ranges and the historical property of Murnal in Victoria. The opportunity to work in the landscape with other artists including David Dridan, Geoff Wilson, Silvio Apponyi, Brian Seidel, Brian Dunlop, Penny Dowie, Rod Schubert, Jim Ingolby, Geoff Weaver and Barry Humphries was invaluable making for many memorable and inspiring times. During these years the Strout Farm group was formed. Dave Dallwitz, Hugo Shaw, David Dridan, Geoff Wilson, Lesley Redgate and Christine met at Strout Farm near Willunga S.A. on a weekly basis for days of en plein air painting, shared lunches and lots of fun. In 1997 Christine returned to teaching Visual Arts at Gilles Street Primary School. 17 reception to year 7 classes a week involving both mainstream and newly arrived students form over 40 different cultural groups meant for busy times. She organized several murals at the school, the largest 38 meters x 5.6 meters depicted different regions of the Australian landscape and included between 60 and 70 birds animals and reptiles. School holidays were used to complete many commissioned works for both corporate and private collections.

Wanarra Station

In 2016 Christine moved to Wanarra Station in the Central West of Western Australia where she is able to focus on her artwork. The amazingly varied landscape, plant forms and wild life provide an endless source of inspiration. Vast spaces, rugged granite outcrops, huge salt lakes, Acacia scrub, ancient York Gums, massive Salmon Gums, and carpets of wild flowers in spring. The natural scrub provides a home for hundreds of birds including red tailed black cockatoos, ring necked parrots, rainbow bee eaters, mulga parrots, galahs, honey eaters and red capped robins that fill the air with song and flashes of colour. Neighbouring farmlands are in stark contrast with great stretches of cropped land, bordered by regular lines of trees. Overarching it all is the amazing, uninterrupted view of the sky, the weather, the atmospheric effects. Wanarra provides a sanctuary for Kangaroos, many rescued by the Midwest Marsupial Carers of Geraldton. They are fascinating, unique, gentle animals so well adapted to this harsh and extreme environment. Each demanding a portrait and resulting in a recent series of charcoal drawings.

Christine Lawrence Artist Statement

I have always been a realist, drawn to the magical illusions that can be created on the surface of the picture plain. Any subject can be a vehicle to study light, colour, form, space… Reality.

  • Reality observed
  • Reality remembered
  • Reality recreated.
  • Every day brings a myriad of visual gifts. Light playing on subjects, reflected or translucent, revealing the amazing forms and details of our world.
  • I aim to capture the essence of that which has inspired me in the complexity and beauty of the natural world:
  • From the vast spaces of the landscape to the colours, textures and details of the leaf litter.
  • From the constantly changing beauty and atmospheric effects of the sky to the patterns shapes and colours of reflections.
  • From the majestic structure and form of a tree to a simple still life.
  • Always striving to find new ways to improve my skills of observation, analysis and representation of my subjects.
  • Providing a window for contemplation.

Curriculum Vitae

  • 1951 Born in Adelaide, South Australia

Studies & Professional Experience

  • 1969-72 Advanced Diploma in Secondary Teaching- Fine Art, Torrens college of Advanced Education and The South Australian School of Art.
  • 1973-84 Taught Visual Arts in South Australian secondary schools.
  • 1974 Taught painting at the Department of Further Education.
  • 1984 Began working full time as a painter.
  • 1991 Commissioned as one of 7 S.A. artists to create 2 landscape paintings for the Australis Centre, Adelaide, South Australia
  • 1993 Commissioned to create a painting for the State Bank of South Australia Tourism Awards Poster.
  • Paintings chosen and commissioned for wine labels for Odd Bins winery Sydney.
  • 1993 Taught Summer Landscape Painting class, Adelaide Central School of Art
  • 1993-94 Judging-Thomas Laird Memorial Travelling Art study Award.
  • 1994 Judging Lobethal Art Show.
  • 1995 Judging Glenelg Apex Art Show
  • 1989-2015 Numerous painting trips to the Flinders Ranges, Gawler Ranges and Victoria with groups of artists including David Dridan, Geoff Wilson, Silvio Apponyi and Brian Seidel
  • 1997-2015 Visual Arts Teacher, Gilles Street Primary School. Created large Landscape mural, 38 metres x 5.6 metres and a variety of smaller murals with students. Commissioned to create 2 murals at Sturt Street Primary School.
  • 2016 Moved to Wanarra Station, Western Australia and resumed painting full time
  • 2017 Invited to open and speak at the Dalwallinu Arts Festival as the featured artist.

Notable placements of paintings

  • Australian embassies in The Hague, Beijing, Dar-es-Salam and Ankara.
  • Australian Mission to the United Nations, Geneva.
  • Australian consulate, Honolulu. Prime Minister’s Office-Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
  • Department of trade, Melbourne.

Corporate collections

  • Australian Wheat Board, Melbourne.
  • Michell Endowment, Victorian National Gallery.
  • Artbank, Sydney.
  • State Bank of South Australia.
  • AMP Society, Adelaide.
  • Western farmers, Perth.
  • SGIC, Adelaide
  • Mayne Nickless, Melbourne and London
  • Dridan Fine Arts, South Australia
  • Ayers Finess, Adelaide and Sydney
  • IEL, Sydney
  • Clarke and Kann Solicitors, Brisbane.
  • Grange trust, Adelaide
  • Hardy Wine Company, Padthaway, South Australia.
  • Beneficial finance corporation, South Australia
  • Australis Centre, South Australia.

Private Collections

  • In Australia, England, Holland, Sweden and the United States of America

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2015 “South Australian Living Artists Festival”. Hugo Winery, McLaren Flat, South Australia
  • 1996  Dridan Fine Art, McLaren Vale, South Australia.
  • 1994 The Barn, Adelaide Festival of Arts, McLaren Vale, South Australia
  • 1988  “ Adelaide festival of Arts”, Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, South Australia
  • 1988 Greenhill Galleries, Perth, Western Australia.
  • 1981 Contemporary Art Society of South Australia
  • 1979 Avenel bee Gallery, Stirling, South Australia.

Group Exhibitions

  • 2017
    • “The Big Landscape”  – Art Images Gallery, Norwood, South Australia
    • “North Midlands Agricultural Society Art exhibition” Carnamah, Western Australia.
    • Winner of the Art Excellence Award.
    • Winner of the Agricultural Art Award
    • Dalwallinu Arts Festival” featured Artist
  • 1998
    • “The Horse in Art”- Dridan Fine Arts, McLaren Vale
  • 1996
    • Hill-Smith Fine Art Gallery, Adelaide
    • Barry Newton Gallery, Unley, South Australia
  • 1994
    • Scotch College Fine Art exhibition, South Australia
    • Woodstock Easter Art exhibition.
    • Dridan Fine Arts- Incorporating Fleurieu Showcase, McLaren vale, S.A.
    • Stafford Studios Perth, Western Australia
    • “The Strout Road Experience’ Dridan Fine Arts, McLaren Vale, S.A.
    • “The 10” x 8” Christmas Exhibition” Dridan fine Arts, McLaren Vale, S.A
  • 1993
    • Christmas Exhibition, The Barn, McLaren Vale, S.A.
  • 1992
    • Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, S.A.
    • Stafford Studios, Perth, W.A.
    • Scotch College fine Art exhibition, Adelaide S.A.
    • Easter Art Exhibition, Woodstock Winery, McLaren Flat, S.A. “
    • Vines and Vales” Wirra Wirra Winery, McLaren Vale, S.A.
  • 1991
    • Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, S.A.
    • Barry Newton Christmas Exhibition, Adelaide, S.A.
    • Stafford Studios, Perth, W.A.
  • 1990
    • “The 80’s…Our Decade in Review”, Greenhill galleries Adelaide, S.A.
    • Easter Art Exhibition, Woodstock Winery, McLaren flat, S.A.
    • “For Rooms Without a View”, Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, S.A.
  • 1989
    • Christmas exhibition, Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, S.A.
    • “Personal Visions”, Royal South Australian Society for the Arts, Adelaide.
    • “Shanghai Chinese Art Institute Exhibition”, The Jam Factory, Adelaide, S.A.
    • “Agean Series No. 2”, Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, S.A.
  • 1988
    • “StillLife in the 80’s”, Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide,S.A.
  • 1987
    • “The Vision Splendid”, R.S.A.S.A., Adelaide, S.A.
    • Corporate Art Exhibition, R.S.A.S.A., Adelaide, S.A.
  • 1982
    • ”10 south Australian painters “, R.S.A.S.A., Adelaide, S.A.
    • Powell Street Gallery, Melbourne, Victoria
  • 1981
    • “Various Images” Royal Melbourne institute of Technology, Victoria
  • 1980
    • “The Real Thing” Contemporary Art Society of South Australia.
  • 1979
    • Contemporary art Society of South Australia

Shop Christine Lawrence Artworks

Christine Lawrence Image Gallery

SOLD Artworks

Christine Lawrence Morning Light Wannara Painting Framed
Morning Light Wanarra
105cm x 95cm
Christine Lawrence Clay Pan With Cane Grasses Painting
Clay Pan With Cane Grasses
80cm x 100cm
Christine Lawrence Mongers Lake Painting
Mongers Lake
153cm x 77cm
Christine Lawrence Late Night Mongers Lake Painting
Late Night Mongers Lake
153cm x 77cm
Christine Lawrence Snappy Gums Painting
Snappy Gums
105cm x 96cm
Christine Lawrence Dales Gorge Painting
Dales Gorge
115cm x 95cm
Wharton Bay
122cm x 91cm
oil on canvas
Lucky Bay
122cm x 91cm
oil on canvas
Esperance Bay
122cm x 91cm
oil on canvas

JahRoc Galleries currently have no Christine Lawrence paintings for sale.