I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and have always been passionate about art, some of my earliest memories are of me drawing hundreds of tiny shoes on lined paper!
I was so lucky to be able to attend the Johannesburg Art, Ballet, Drama and Music school (now called the National School of the Arts) and then went on to study fine art at Technikon Pretoria, majoring in Painting.
That was when my life took an unexpected turn. An opportunity arose when I was offered an apprenticeship in Jewellery manufacturing, which I jumped at, and then went on to open my a jewellery business together with my husband, Nat, which we ran for about 12 years, making custom designed jewellery for clients. I had a bit of success with designing jewellery, and won 10 awards in Jewellery design, including prestigious awards from de Beers and Anglogold. A proud moment was when I was commissioned by de Beers to manufacture their Forevermark showpiece, a huge neckpiece consisting of multiple strelitzias in 18ct gold, with a 6 carat white centre diamond.
I continued to paint in between my jewellery pursuits, and in 2008, I moved with my family, to Dunsborough, and then not long after, to Kununurra, Western Australia, where I worked full time as manager of a jewellery store, while painting in my spare time. Making the move to Kununurra was a turning point for me, I changed my painting style completely, and painting sales really took off!
In 2016, I made the decision to become a full-time artist. It was quite terrifying, but so far, so good!
My favourite subjects include the Kimberley region of Western Australia, boab trees and flowers, cattle, people and wildlife.
My paintings are on permanent display at Artopia Gallery, Kununurra. I also teach watercolour and acrylic classes at my home studio, and take bookings for private functions.
The Kimberley region continues to inspire me, it's breathtaking beauty has taken me on a magical journey of inspiration and creativity. My work is in collections in the UK, USA, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, across Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Hopefully I can add lots to this list in the future.
Thanks for your interest in me and what I do!
2009 - Solo Exhibition at Lovell Gallery Kununurra WA
2014 - Solo Exhibition at Artopia Gallery Kununurra WA
2015 - Joint exhibition with Jan Parish - Artopia Gallery Kununurra WA
2017 - Solo Exhibition at Artopia Gallery Kununurra WA
2017/18 Solo Exhibition at Wills Domain Yallingup, WA
© Copyright Jeanne Barnes Artist. All rights reserved.