Geoff Bonney

I can’t remember ever not wanting to be an artist.  Born on the Murray River home of the Wemba Wemba people, although I didn’t know this as a kid.  I loved the artifacts though, brought into school sometimes unearthed by a plough.  I left school early to do a screen printing apprenticeship in Melbourne, doing life drawing at night school.  I ended up working in the PMG art department before taking off to see the world and the art it offered.  I’ve turned my hand to all kinds of mediums but what I love best is painting and sculpture using whatever paint or bits and pieces that come to hand.  I have always felt the need to earn my living from art and have done so by constantly adapting and learning new skills.   In seventies London I worked as a graphic designer in the fashion industry but ducked out and visited the Tate and The National Gallery whenever I could.   Europe was a fascinating treasure house of culture, art, architecture and language.  Before I returned to Australia I drove from London to South Africa and found another whole world again.  Those years taught me how rich and varied art was and how it reflected life and the way people live it.  Coming back to Australia I went north and was part of the rebuilding of Darwin after the cyclone.  I wasn’t ready to turn my back on different cultures and soon found my way to Indonesia.  I also discovered all the wealth of Northern Australian indigenous culture and art, the bark painting, the Western desert dot painting, the weaving.  I was earning my living as a graphic designer but it was in those years that I started painting.  I decided to study fine art soon after and that has been my personal focus since that time.  Earning a living was much harder without graphic design but I did some teaching, exhibited and got by.  I travelled again, back to Europe and North Africa.  On returning to Australia I became interested in community and public art and developed a living through that.  For the last 17 years I have worked with Peter Widmer in Ratartat, a public art business stretching my imagination and adaptability.  Who knows what the future holds.

I can’t remember ever not wanting to be an artist.
I can’t remember ever not wanting to be an artist.


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Membership of Organisations

Ballarat Arts Alive
Friends of Learmonth