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Born in Cape Town 1963


While still at school, my interest in drawing faces led to winning my first art competition in a teenage magazine.

This inspired me to keep drawing and learning with each new portrait and in turn developing a deep love for portraiture.

After matriculating, I studied Fine Art at the Cape Technikon under Leon Rubens, Richard Mitchell and Jan Vermeiren, amongst others.

Working in a retail art environment followed for many years, with a travel break and some time spent as a crafter and supplier to the tourism industry (Cape Heritage shop) and an exhibition at Flora '93 with The Botanical Society of SA.

I continued exploring different subject matter, striving to improve in technique and developing a love for various mediums while being inspired by the masters and influenced by both local and international contemporary artists.

Favourites include Monet, Lautrec, Klimt, Schiele, Sargent, Zorn, and current American Realists, David Kassan, Jeremy Lipking and Mario Robinson, among many others.

My subject matter has recently focused on musicians in performance, portrait studies of local characters, and the natural environment of the Cape, especially the local bird life, which I intend to develop further.

My desire with any work is to strive to capture the essence or life within the subject. Favourite mediums include graphite, oils, pastels and charcoal.

Group Exhibitions

Wildlife, adventure and narrative, annual wildlife exhibition at The Cape Gallery

Pause, annual wildlife exhibition at The Cape Gallery

Encounters, annual wildlife exhibition at The Cape Gallery
SASA Merit exhibition Kirstenbosch

The world we live in, annual wildlife exhibition at The Cape Gallery
SASA Annual Exhibition - Best Drawing Trophy Kirstenbosch

SASA Group show - Members Exhibition Kirstenbosch

2009, 2010
SAJE - UCT College of Music - Exhibition of drawings & paintings of musicians

These Four Walls Fine Art Gallery Observatory - 2 group shows.

Art in the Avenue Cape Town

Besides many completed commissions, my work has sold locally and can be found in private collections internationally in USA, UK, Germany and Australia.

Cathy McShannon
View larger image
Title: Swallow- cold day
Size: 13 x 15 cm
Media: Oil on wood
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