Anton Lees,born Geoffrey Anton Lees in Broken Hill 1938. Studied art as a subject at St. Peters College in South Australia under artist A. J. Chote. Anton also studied privately with A.J.Chote for three years, and later at the South Australian School of Arts.
In 1956 he studied wool classing and practised this trade for the next seventeen years in both Australia and New Zealand. Wool classing took him to the North and South East of South Australia, Western Australia, New South Wales and Victoria. Such travelling allowed ample opportunity for photography, sketching and painting. During this time Anton concentrated mostly on watercolours.
In later years oils became his preferred medium as he experimented with portraiture in oils on split pile velvet. This work, despite its novelty value became very popular and in huge demand. Anton held exhibitions in Adelaide at the Myer Emporium, the Don Pedro Gallery in Stirling and at Mount Barker in the Adelaide hills.
In 1970 he opened his own art gallery – studio in Mount Gambier, where he promoted his own work and that of other artists from both Australia and overseas. Among such artists were Tushar Kante-Palle, Barbara Watson, Gus Christensen and several exhibitions of John C.Goodchild.
At that time Anton’s work was in such demand, that ever increasing orders were dictating what he must paint. This obligation led to pressure that dampened his enthusiasm and creativity, thus the painting that he loved became a burden and ceased to flow with the usual copious abundance that he had been accustomed to.
When Anton opened a retail camera shop and photographic studio in Mount Gambier his painting became neglected and in following twenty-seven years he unsuccessfully attempted to resume painting on a number of occasions. The desire to return to that enrestrained creative abandon that he once remembered began to erode at his pragmatic lifestyle. Many times he became despondent to discover that while his personal standards, which influenced his aspirational drive, had remained at an ambitiosly high level, his technical ability to produce such work had fallen depressingly. As a consequence each time he attempted to resume his painting his enthusiasm quickly became asphixiated.
In August 2004 he saw his daughter working in pastels and found himself becoming involved in her work. As a result he experimented with this new meduim, taking great care not to witness the work of other pastel artists. Because he had no previous knowledge of this new medium he had no standard goal, allowing him to work with new enthusiasm. He soon became absorbed and began experimenting with watercolour washes as a foundation for soft pastels. He quickly discovered a tangible satisfaction within realism and textures and began experimenting with many different subjects. It was the pastels themselves that began to reveal their own ostensible magic.

  • Joined: June 2007
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