Catching up with Kevin McKay: Eastern Suburbs Studies

I'll hand over to Kevin who will describe the background to his exhibition Eastern Suburbs Studies which was held at the Woollahra Bookshop, Spicer St Woollahra, NSW, Australia from 10 Oct -10 Nov 2023. All works are oil on canvas on board 20 x 28 cm.

Each Tuesday I take a group plein-air painting at various locations in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.

Kevin McKay Left: National Art School Chapel, 2023, Right: Building 27- National Art School, 2023 
Kevin McKay Left: Bottle and Glass Rocks 2022 Right: Painter - Bottle and Glass Rocks, 2023
Kevin McKay Left: Elipse - Centennial Park, 2023 Right: Camp Cove canon, 2023

All these works began during these excursions and were completed in the studio.1

Kevin McKay Left: Plein-air painter - Little Bay Beach, 2022 Right: Cliffs Edge - Clovelly, 2023
Kevin McKay Left: St Michael’s spire , 2022 Right: Cross and car - St Michaels Vaucluse, 2023

Sitting in situ can feel transgressive in the busy city, and therapeutic in providing a primary experience of place that is framed geographically by the harbour and the sea.1

Kevin McKay Left: Darling Point wharf, 2023 Right: Winter tree - Woollahra Post Office, 2023
Kevin McKay Left: Hornby Lighthouse and cottage, 2023 Right: Green window - Macquarie Lighthouse, 2023

The fleeting effect of light also makes us aware of our place in time, challenging one to respond in the unfolding moment, while pockets of nature evoke the Dreamtime and the built environment documents the history since Colonisation.1

Kevin McKay Left: Mound - Elizabeth Place Paddington, 2023 Right: Big blue building - North Bondi, 2023
Kevin McKay: Left: Bronte Park, 2023 Right: Gordons Bay shed, 2022

The difficult pleasure of constructing a composition requires one to find a unit of measure within the landscape, which can reveal an interesting geometric order even in the most contemporary vista.1

Kevin McKay Left: McKell Park bench, 2023 Right:Red tree red roof - Centennial Park, 2023

I enjoy finding a sense of the classical and romantic within the flux of the city. 1

Kevin McKay Left: Jersey Road cottage - Paddington, 2023 Right: Vaucluse House, 2023

The Woollahra Bookshop is situated in the Eastern Suburbs, so it’s special to show work where the subject is recognised and where viewers own memories associated with these places can ‘complete’ the work.2

Kevin McKay Left: Cliffside - Macquarie LH Reserve, 2023 Right: Bondi Rd Post Office, 2023
Kevin McKay Left: On the Rocks - Gordons Bay, 2023 Right: Mahon Rock Pool, 2023

Kevin McKay is an artist who has the skill and empathy to capture the soul of the Australian spirit in his urban landscapes and seascapes: the latter of which is very much forefront in our minds at the moment as the summer holiday season is here.

Tomorrow Julie is going to take you back to the Victorian coastline and a photographer who knows how to capture the beauty of the beach. This will be the first in a series as we follow photographers around the coastline of Australia.

We have featured Kevin McKay in several posts. Please use the AnArt4Life search tool to locate these posts. And you might also like to check out Kevin's website by clicking here.

© Thank you to Kevin McKay who kindly gave permission for the images of his work to be shared on AnArt4Life.

2. Communication with Kevin McKay