Melissa Anderson Scott

About Melissa Anderson Scott

Melissa Anderson Scott
Melissa was born in Evanston, Illinois in 1953. She studied Fine Art at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. After marrying and moving to New Zealand in 1975, she studied under Michael Shepherd, Sylvia Siddell and Peter Waddell, as well as pursuing private study of Dutch and Flemish painting techniques. She has been a finalist in the Wallace Art awards five times, and won the Nola Holmwood Portrait Award in 1994.

"In looking at my paintings, it will quickly become apparent that there are recurring themes and motifs in the work. I have a strong fascination for the human form and all its moods, and in my paintings I am seeking to explore movement and gesture, the frozen moment, and the subtleties of relationships. I am using a mixture of 17th and 19th century painting techniques and combining these traditional (and, in some cases, almost lost) painting methods with a thoroughly modern use of colour and composition to create a new fusion – a body of work that refers to the past without repeating it. My oil technique produces a sturdy and reliable paint layer, because I have a commitment to producing works that will last. For this reason also, I use Belgian linen for my supports. This linen is still produced in the same way that it was in the 1500’s.

The advent of photography, film and video led artists to question the validity of portraiture, but now people are becoming increasingly aware of the limitations of these media. I think, as I always have, that nothing can replace or equal the poetic notation of the artist’s hand. The impact of photography and television on my work is obvious –the split images, selective focus and even the harsh cropping are all testament to the fact that these are paintings of the turn of the new century, but with a commitment to exploring the subtleties of technique practised by painters of the past."

Finalist: (Dark Narrative) Wallace Trust Art Award, Aotea Centre, Auckland
2002 Finalist: (I Just Want to Know What It’s Worth) Wallace Trust Art Award, Auckland War Memorial Museum
2001 Finalist: (Shelter for the Homeless) Wallace Trust Art Award, NEW Gallery, Auckland
1999 Finalist: (Daughter) James Wallace/Visa Gold Art Award, Auckland
1994 Finalist: (Vincent) James Wallace Art Award, Auckland
1994 Winner First Prize: (Richard) Nola Holmwood Portrait Award, ASA Gallery
1993 Finalist: Nola Holmwood Portrait Award, ASA Gallery
1992 Finalist: Nola Holmwood Portrait Award, ASA Gallery