Painter, sculptor and printmaker John Kelly was born in Bristol, UK in 1965 and immigrated with his family to Australia in the same year.
In 1985 he received a Bachelor of Arts (Visual Arts – Painting) from RMIT University, Melbourne, where he also completed his Master of Arts in 1995.
As a winner of the 1995 Anne & Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship, he travelled to London to study as an Affiliate Student at the Slade School of Art from 1996 to 1997.
John Kelly has exhibited in Australia and the United Kingdom since 1988. He is best known for his paintings and large sculptures of William Dobell’s cows, which were papier-mâché figures used during WWII to confuse enemy aircrafts of the location of the Australian airbases.
His sculptures of these cows have made their way to exhibitions of the Champs Elysees, Paris in Les Champs de la Sculpture (2000) and Monte Carlo in La Parade des Animaux, (2002).
More recently Kelly’s work has been based on specific motifs, including the logo of the Arts Council of Australia. He currently lives with his family in Cork, Ireland.