Johanna Hildebrandt Series: The Glory of Water

Andrew and I do hope that you are enjoying the AnArt4Life "exhibition" of paintings by Johanna Hildebrandt who brings an exciting visual interpretation of Australian native creatures against a backdrop of a lush and vibrant landscape.

Many of Johanna Hildebrandt landscapes include a dash or spread of water beneath the colourful creatures and foliage who make up the composition.

As Johanna commented: a constant source of inspiration is my love for the Australian flora and fauna. The unique wildlife is a continuing influence on my vividly coloured interpretations of all nature. 1

Still Waters 45x60cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Painting Collection of Andrew from the Hunter Valley, NSW)

We discussed in the previous post in the series how Johanna loves to include the moon and the subtle effects of moonlight on the landscape and again we see this style in Still Waters above.

However, today we are going to feature Johanna's paintings of creatures who inhabit the sea commencing with the delightful Icy Waters (below) which I am sure will delight everyone because penguins are always a crowd favourite.

Icy Waters 50x40cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Painting Collection of Andrew from the Hunter Valley, NSW)

Andrew explains that Icy Waters: was part of an exhibition of Johanna Hildebrandt paintings that went to Japan but was one of the only ones not sold in Japan. The story goes that Japanese are not particularly fond of showing images reflecting coldness on their walls. This was great for me as it finished up on my wall which leads to the second story...

Occasionally this painting would appear at the end of a dinner party after everyone had consumed a glass of wine or more!! The competition was to count the number of penguins 😆!!! To this day I don't think anyone really knows - I certainly don't!!! 2

And another firm favourite with most people are whales and the magnificence of these sea creatures is captured in dramatic style by Johanna in her painting of the Humpback Whale.

Humpback Whale 49x34cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Painting Collection of Andrew from the Hunter Valley, NSW)

When Johanna Hildebrandt first commenced painting she was influenced by the naive artists and in particular Henri Rousseau. We discussed the influence of Rousseau on Johanna's work in Johanna Hildebrandt Series: Enhancing Artistic Talent.

Following the naive style Johanna's early paintings featured people as is usual in most naive paintings as they are largely focusing on the lives of ordinary folk and the environment in which they live.

As you have seen over this series Johanna's style matured into a focus on native Australian creatures and it became rare to see humans included in her later paintings. Prawning as shown below is an exception and is a lovely segue back to the style which first inspired this wonderfully talented artist.

Prawning 45x38cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Painting Collection of Andrew from the Hunter Valley, NSW)

Also another rare sighting of a human water creature is found in The Diver - the painting being exhibited as part of a Sporting Theme at The Australian Naive Gallery, Woollahra, where Andrew spent a great amount of time enjoying these remarkable works. 2

The Diver 27x32cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Painting Collection of Andrew from the Hunter Valley, NSW)

When viewing a Hildebrandt painting you are taken into another world - a peaceful yet exciting world. As Johanna emphasises: The aim of my artwork is to convey happiness and pleasure; a respite from daily stress and anxiety. The accuracy and scale of the elements are not important to me, as my focus is on the emotional responses they create in the viewer. I am a great admirer of artists such as Henry Rousseau and Paul Gauguin. This influence can be seen in the colour, flora and fauna that inhabit my work.3

And definitely taking respite from daily stress and anxiety are the seals in the painting below.

Seals Beach 39x49cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Painting Collection of Andrew from the Hunter Valley, NSW)

Johanna tells us that: As long as I can remember, I loved roaming the countryside. To this day I still do a lot of walking in the wilderness and always come away feeling refreshed and full of inspiration. The natural environment, particularly when it is wild and untouched, still has a profound impact on me. Furthermore, my reef and underwater scenes are inspired by my passion for snorkeling in the clear waters of the Pacific Ocean.3

If you would like to explore more paintings by Johanna to take in the visual representations of the exotic landscape in which she lives and loves please click on the image below in Reef with Mangrove Trees.

Reef With Mangrove Trees Acrylic on Canvas, 60cm x 45cm by Johanna Hildebrandt (Source:

Johanna further explains that: I use quick-drying acrylic paint, which allows me to work without interrupting the flow of inspiration and creation. Although my technical skills improve over time, my focus remains true to my original response to this captivating world. That keeps my work fresh and spontaneous.3

Tomorrow we will view some of the more recent paintings by Johanna which come from the same love of the Australian native life and their exotic environment but are created in a different style.

© Thank you to Johanna Hildebrandt who kindly gave permission for the images of her works to be shared on AnArt4Life and for providing assistance in the preparation of the posts on her works. All the paintings displayed were created in acrylic paints on canvas. She has had more than 20 Solo Exhibitions in Australia, Japan and Germany and has taken part in many important group shows internationally.

And a special thank you to the Collector Andrew from the Hunter Valley Region of New South Wales for sharing his Johanna Hildebrandt collection.

Andrew would also like to give a plug to Clare Farrelly who does such a wonderful and professional job of photographing these paintings so that they can be presented in such a way which is fitting to be showcased on the AnArt4Life blog.

2. Correspondence with Andrew Johns