Artist Profile: Jesslyn Wijaya

AT JUST 16, JESSLYN CHRISTABELLE WIJAYA ALREADY HAS SIX SOLO EXHIBITIONS UNDER HER BELT. NELL COHEN TALKS TO THE YOUNG TALENT ABOUT HER KEEN EYE FOR COLOUR.

WITH HER SEVENTH solo exhibition coming up in July, art is not just an after-school hobby for Sydney-based artist Jesslyn Christabelle Wijaya. The 16 year old began painting from early childhood and first learned the basics of the medium from her mother Imelda and art teacher Ken Harris. She has since produced hundreds of works using acrylic, oil paints and global pouring medium. When she was just six years old, the Sydney Children’s Hospital displayed a series of her paintings in her first solo exhibition.

Jesslyn’s practice covers abstract themes, still life and landscapes, drawing from spirituality, nature and travel. “I find inspiration by travelling to different places, or when I’m experimenting with different mediums and I like the outcome, or I accidentally do something wrong but it continues to flow and a different perspective emerges,” she says.

Her mother noticed her daughter’s talent at age three, in her bold and mature experimentation with colour. The artist describes her practice as using “many different hues of blues, purples, yellows and other [complementary] colours to create a balance within the artworks, to depict a sense of harmony.”

Still a school student herself, Jesslyn has taken up the role of teacher via school holiday painting classes. Her work has been featured in galleries in Melbourne and Sydney and in 2018 she was the child to have a solo exhibition at the Fountain Court at New South Wales Parliament House. Safe to say, we’ll be watching this space!

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