Gabby Malpas

Gabby’s watercolours are intricate portrayals of blended cultures and beautiful objects. Locally grown fruit and flowers picked and bought near-by are rendered with a warmth and intimacy, forming a conversation between the rarefied, patterned flora that decorates the Chinese ceramics and Malaysian batik fabrics within her images.

Gabby creates many sketches of a single flower or piece of fruit, playing with multiple viewpoints. Compositions are then imagined using a mental assemblage of the images often long after the flower has shed its petals and the oranges have been eaten. Gabby regularly studies butterfly specimens and photos of birds, bringing them to life in her works. Ceramics discovered in junk shops and batik sarongs from her travels around South East Asia are the constants within this series. Gabby simplifies the patterns on these objects, often flattening them out to display a pared-down pattern. By bringing these floral and faunal representations together, Gabby captures the fleetingly beautiful alongside the traditional and enduring.

Antique documents sewn onto the watercolour paper before Gabby begins to paint also give some of her works this sense of history.

1986

Otago Polytechnic School of Fine Art

2017

Art Revolution, Taipei (Finalist)

2016

Mosman Art Prize (Finalist)

2016

Fleurieu Food and Wine Art prize (Finalist)

2016

Kirribilli Art Prize (Finalist)

2016

Moreton Bay Art Prize (Finalist)

2015

North Sydney Art Prize (Finalist)

2011

Nora Heysen Centenary Art Prize – Still Life (Finalist)

2011

National Trust Harper’s Mansion Art Prize

2011

Hornsby Art Prize

2012

James Kiwi Watercolour Prize

2012

Westmead Hospital Art Prize (Highly Commended)

2011/2012

Watercolour: Blacktown City Art Prize (Highly Commended)

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