Vanessa Stockard was born in 1975 in Sydney. She then spent her formative years in a small country town in the Mid North Coast of New South Wales. After graduating from the College Of Fine Arts (COFA) Sydney in 1998 with a BFA, she launched head first into the avant-garde art scene in the bohemian village of Glebe in Sydney's Inner West.

Stockard is one of the most dangerous artists on the Australian, and by extension, international scene. Her ethereal works of art (in oil and or acrylic on birch panel) are a window into the soul of a talented and complex artist, one whose legacy is bound to resonate well past her generation. The almost existential nature of her atheistic musings say some- thing profoundly visceral about our understanding of reality and in essence its very nature.

Twenty years of introspection and experimentation, ranging over a number of media have forged Vanessa's style and vulcanised her craft to reveal complex misdemeanours, whilst at the same time demanding the viewer’s reflection on the self. She deals with isolation and sadness with as much care and attention as her more intimate works seek to redefine what it means to feel love.

Vanessa believes not in failure, but in continued discovery of things previously unseen, revealing work that is fresh, unlabored and tinged with silver linings. The deceptive everyday nature of her subject matter belies hidden depths of feeling and emotion. One could describe her process as absence of thought (freedom from construct) or more specifically, stream of consciousness not unlike the writings of hemming way or Thomas Wolfe.

If light and shade were students, she would be their master. This skill combined with a deft hand and determined use of perspective imbue the subjects with gravitas. The artist refers to set design elements that often change and morph organically as the piece progresses. She has said she feels grounded in her ability to draw from the benign surrounds of a normal life and infuse these images with a meaning that provides meditative satisfaction.

Stockard’s process also includes pieces developed without visual reference but rather from memory. These narratives incorporate domestic pets such as cats and dogs, juxtaposing the anthropomorphic nature of these animals are given by society, she infuses the personification of virtue and vice into the everyday canine and feline status quo. Cats with their fluffy comical exteriors yet instinctual urge to kill and a tendency to be cruel to their prey, dogs with their providence of happiness and friendship flung back to Churchill’s metaphor for depression.

The Kafkaesque mindset required to produce such works is reminiscent of the great existentialists like Sartre and Camus. Absurdism in its essence plays a role with the appearance of cake imagery and its relation to a childlike nostalgia, evoking happiness (real or imagined) unattainable and unachievable. It’s been said “pain is inexhaustible, its only people who get exhausted...”

One can never have it all, to be both the artist and patron, to intrinsically understand those things around us that others don’t, is to be great. It’s what we want from our artists, our creatives, They give voice to an interpretation of the world around us with all its consumerism, greed and dissatisfaction. There’s no pretension here, just insight and beauty. Some art is said to speak volumes, but rather than just speak, these works shout from the rooftops.


Solo Exhibitions
2017, cold comforts, curated by Amber Cresswell Bell, Sheffer Gallery
2016, Vanessa Stockard, A.K. Bellinger Gallery, Inverell
2015, Halcyon, Sydney
2015 La Vie en Rose, Art2Muse, Sydney
2014 Textura, Art2Muse, Sydney
2013 Inside, Outside, Charles Hewitt, Sydney
2013 The Garden, Maunsell Wickes, Sydney
2012 Untethered, Maunsell Wickes, Sydney
2012 Tenebrism, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2011 Vanessa Stockard, Artist’s Deli, Bowral
2010 Quiesce, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2009 Siren’s Song, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2009 Taree Regional Gallery, Taree
2007/8/9 Murdoch Collections, Portland, USA
2007 Cork, Portland, USA
1999 Dendy Cinema Sydney

Group Exhibitions

2019 Archilbald Prize Finalist Art Gallery of NSW , Sydney, Australia

2018 Archilbald Prize Finalist Art Gallery of NSW , Sydney, Australia

2017 Archilbald Prize Finalist Art Gallery of NSW , Sydney, Australia
2017 A.K.Bellinger Gallery
2016 Birds Gallery, Melbourne
2016 Walcha Gallery, Walcha
2016 Small Spaces, Sydney
2016 Equus, Olsen Irwin, Sydney
2015 Project 504, Sydney
2015 Stones, Berrima
2015 The Moree Gallery, Moree
2014 Space Matters, ION, Kings Street Wharf, Sydney
2014 Autumn show, Bradman Art Gallery Centre, Bowral
2014 Murdoch Collections, Portland, Oregon.
2013 Goulburn Regional Gallery, Goulburn (award, highly commended)
2013 BCAG, Bradman Art gallery Centre, Bowral
2013 Sydney Children's Hospital, (permanent collection)
2013 Something Small, Charles Hewitt, Marrickville
2013 Is it a bird, Is it a plane, Charles Hewitt, Marrickville
2013 Wombat Hollow, Mausell Wickes and Michael Yabsley, Kangaloon
2012 A Painterly Selection, Artist’s Deli, Bowral
2012 Views and Visions, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2011 Think Big, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2011 Mythos Fine Art, California, USA
2011 Murdoch Collections, Portland, USA
2010 About Flowers, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2010 Something Personal, Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney
2009 Don Capon, Sydney Eye Hospital, Sydney
2009 Blank_Space Art Gallery, Sydney
2009 Perlcontemporaryart, Vaucluse, NSW
2008 Taree Art Show, Taree, NSW
2007 Katayama, Portland, USA
2006/7 Guestroom Gallery, Portland, USA
2005 The Art Lounge, Sydney
2005 The Brush Gallery, Wingham, NSW
2005 Kelmans Winery, Hunter Valley, NSW
2003 Walcom Manning Art Prize
2003 Moulton Art Gallery Mona Vale, NSW
2002 Applause Gallery, South Melbourne
1998/9 Woollahra Art Show
1997-2004 Taree Art Exhibition
1997 Seal Rocks Show, Ivan Dougherty Gallery, NSW

2006-2007 Gilding and Carving with Dane Wilson, Master Framer, Katayama, USA
2003-2004 Julian Ashton Art School, (Anatomy and Life drawing)
2002-2003 North Sydney Art School, (Still Life and Landscape Painting)
1999-2001 The Framing School, Sydney, (Conservation and Object Framing)
1995-1999 University of NSW, College of Fine Art, BFA
1994 University of Sydney, Art History


  • Facebook Black Round
  • Instagram Black Round