Anna Connell is from Walbanga Tribe, Yuin Country, which spans areas along the South Coast of NSW. She was born in Moruya, and has a deep connection with the ocean, having spent much of her childhood near the water.
Anna has been a working artist since around 2004. She is self-taught and uses art to express herself and celebrate connection to her Indigenous heritage. She describes her method as ‘painting by feel’ – meaning that she allows the images to unfold and present themselves, rather than working to a plan. “They come alive before my eyes as I watch the story unfold,” she says.
Expressing emotions through colour and texture is what inspires Anna’s art. She loves the freedom she finds in honouring her heritage and playing with contemporary genres. Her stunning creations blend dot painting, figurative work, traditional cultural symbols and original imagery into striking, colourful artworks.
At Recycled Mats, we are proud to be working with Anna to translate these creations into products for our indoor/outdoor ranges. Anna's beautiful multicolour Family cushion cover is one example!
Artists are often asked to name their ‘one big achievement’. For Anna, this is the ongoing reward she feels as she creates connections between her art and those who appreciate or enjoy it. “Every piece of artwork I create, that another soul can connect to, and which evokes an emotion to connect to my Aboriginal heritage is my biggest achievement,” Anna says. “To open a door, even just slightly, to connect with others and share my pride in my heritage is my main purpose.”
Anna sees art as having helped her validate her identity and discover her life’s purpose. “If I don’t paint, I don’t feel whole.” It’s as simple as that.
In the future. Anna hopes to build and expand upon the foundations she has created with her art so far. She looks forward to connecting with more people through her art, including getting involved with some collaborative projects. “My main objective and goal is to keep reaching further and developing and evolving as an artist,” Anna says.
"All family, including our extended family, is like a warm supporting hug"
Artist Anna Connell, 2018
To learn more about Anna's work visit her at 'A Pocketful of Art' Facebook page