There is a meditative quality to Aaron Kinnane’s landscapes that suggests his inspiration goes beyond simple fascinations with environment and the materiality of paint. Kinnane has spent years observing the land while mustering cattle on horseback in the mid north coast of New South Wales and he imports something of the solitude and vastness he experienced during that time into his paintings. Like the Impressionists and Romantics before him, Kinnane’s landscapes capture ephemeral effects of light and atmosphere, but overlaid with a quiet spirituality that evokes the sensation of being in nature rather than replicating its precise features. His palette knife technique deliberately reduces detail to something between abstraction and naturalism, allowing the viewer to cast their own interpretation on the scene before them, though an underlying sense of Kinnane’s own contemplations and deep connection to the land remains in the layers of oil paint.
The tactile quality of Kinnane’s landscapes is further enhanced by regular forays into sculpture. Cast in bronze from timber forms made using a chainsaw and chisel, these large scale figures are clearly akin to his painting practice while adding a more explicitly human and introspective aspect to the work.
Aaron Kinnane studied Visual Arts at Newcastle University, and furthered his formal training as assistant to respected Italian artist Sandro Chia (b. 1946) in his Tuscan studio from 2000-2001. In 2017 Kinnane undertook an artist residency at the Chateau de Creancey, Burgundy. A finalist in the prestigious Wynne Prize for Landscape at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (2015), the NSW Parliament Plein-air Prize, Sydney (2016), and four-time-finalist in the Tattersall’s Landscape Art Prize (2017, 2016, 2015, 2014), his work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and France and his work is held in private and public collections both nationally and internationally.
Carrie McCarthy 2022