‘though I have been living and painting in the Blue Mountains for the last few decades, my fascination with Australias Eastern Seaboard and its iconic architectural beauty springs from my teenage years living in Sydneys North and being an avid surfer and later, extensively travelling the East Coast playing in rock and roll bands. The Art Deco Bathing Pavilions, Surf Clubs and Ocean Baths have been a constant motif and preoccupation in my work. My sharply defined style aims to not only capture something about the Australian experience of landscape – how we impose ourselves upon it, how we exist in it, but to also explore how our intense antipodean light illuminates and dominates that whole experience”

JAMES WILLEBRANT graduated from The National Art School in 1972 being awarded the National Art School Painting prize in 1970 and 1972 respectively.
While at The National Art School Willebrant had already established his unique vision and in 1973 was encouraged by fellow artist and Mentor Charles Blackman to mount his first Exhibition at Philip Bacon Galleries in Brisbane. This seminal exhibition was enthusiastically received by the public and began a successful career as a professional painter, which has spanned 36 years and over 70 exhibitions throughout Australia and Overseas.
His work features in major Private, Public and Corporate Collections which include The National Galleries of Victoria, NSW and Queensland, Many Regional Galleries, Parliament House Collection, Australia-Japan Trade Commission, Sydney Theatre Company, Qantas,The Australian Embassy-Tokyo, Artbank, Australian Stock Exchange, The Deutsche Bank and several Major University Collections.

In the mid 1970s James Willebrant became part of the exiting evolution of the art scene in Australia showing his work at The Australian Galleries in Melbourne and with The Kym Bonython Gallery in Sydney. These two galleries in particular were at the forefront of the revolution that supported a new generation of Australian artists and captured the imagination of the Australian public. Willebrant and contemporaries like Brett Whiteley, Tim Storrier, John Coburn, Martin Sharpe and John Firth-Smith continued to redefine, explore and celebrate the Australian Experience as their precursors such as Streeton, Dobell, Tucker, Drysdale and Nolan had done.

James Willebrants style has been variously described as Surreal, Pop-Art and even Existentialist but no label can adequately encompass or define the subtleties of his unique work. He paints the Australian landscape and captures its amazing light He celebrates popular Australian culture . He paints the Human Being in this landscape and as we look at his everyman-everywoman figures caught in a particular moment of Being we are brought back to some deep personal recognition, emotion or memory. Such a response needs no label, no critical thesis. It just is.. the essence of Good Art. It provokes, it stimulates, it celebrates and it intimates something about our essence, which is beyond words.

In 1986 James Willebrant moved from Balmain to The Blue Mountains seeking new horizons both literally and figuratively. The physically beautiful and at times spiritually challenging atmosphere of the mountains saw his work expand both thematically and stylistically.

Exhibitions at Soho Galleries by JAMES WILLEBRANT
Crossing Archimedes Puzzle – 06-07-2019 to 31-07-2019
James Willebrant : Art Exhibition – 06-07-2019 to 02-08-2019
James Willebrant Art Exhibition – 28-07-2019 to 02-08-2019
Art Mezzanine : James Willebrant – 08-08-2019 to 31-08-2019