Melissa Egan's paintings tell stories that relate to humanity, our relationships and our context within the natural environment, which often reflects an atmospheric and intriguing landscape set in Australia.
"I tend to paint landscapes that I am familiar with, and as I am surrounded by the Australian bush, it often translates into my work. However, I grew up in Tasmania so consequently I am occasionally drawn to a more European ambience'', says Egan, who tends to use the landscape as a 'stage' for her 'actors'. These characters are metaphoric, representing stories and fables, or different emotional shades of humanity to which everyone relates from time to time.
"While figures predominate in the majority of the work, it is their interconnectedness with their environment that lends plausibility to their existence. To me, the landscape, the figures and animals interrelate with one another to be of equal importance,” continues Egan.
Yet she feels it is very much up to the viewer to draw from her paintings their personal interpretation. A desolate landscape devoid of foliage may be interpreted as human's ongoing destruction of the environment, or else appreciated on a purely aesthetic level for its harsh and barren beauty.
Irrespective of interpretation, it would be impossible not to recognise the unique, lyrical, beauty of Egan's brushstroke that always engages the viewer and our senses.
Melissa Egan holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from ANU and has been exhibiting since 1997 in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane. She has been a finalist in numerous prestigious art awards, including the Archibald Prize, the Sulman Prize, the Portia Geach Memorial Art Award, the Doug Moran Portrait Prize, the Blake Religious Art Prize, Tattersall’s Landscape Art Prize, the Kedumba Drawing Award and the Fleurieu Peninsula Biennale Art Prize.
2019: Finalist - King's School Art Prize
2018: Winner - Members' Choice Award, Tattersall's Landscape Art Prize
2017: Highly Commended - Tattersall's Landscape Art Prize
2016: Highly Commended - Tattersall's Landscape art Prize