Fiona Omeenyo is known for her really intense use of colour, often contrasting colour. Her paintings from tropical North Queensland have elements of sunsets, ocean vistas, beaches with people, birds and elder figures. She highlights the activities that are going on using contrasting colours of oranges, reds, golds against blues, greens, even purples. The range of colours is quite extensive and full of interesting contrasts.
There is also something engaging in the way she applies colour. She blends the colours across the canvas so you get this wonderful range of tones that add to the richness of the palette and extends the central idea. Instead of having one turquoise blues in the area, there will be a whole range of blue tones that expand the colour impact of that canvas.
Fiona's skill in using colour is to get the maximum impact she can for the image that she's constructed. She brings the environment right into the room by bringing the beachfront and the outdoor landscapes into view using her skills with colour.
Fiona Omeenyo | Big Family Gathering
Fiona Omeenyo is an artist from Northern Queensland. Her people are from the coast at Lockhart River and she paints the concept of family gathering together. Her images use a figurative notion that is partly about living people and partly about the spirit of her own people in a wider sense. Being a person of the coast, Fiona’s painting often have a sense of watery presence, with blues that merge into each other. They blend and mix so that it could the sky and the clouds, it could be the sea, the ocean, the water. The colours carry right through the spirit figures of the group of people coming together. In this sense Fiona Omeenyo uses the blues to create an ethereal sense of space in paintings. There is also a connection to the landscape, the edge of the ocean with the people who are often fishing or collecting shells or generally gathering along the coastline for family events. There’s a close association between colour and family activities.
(Jap 014143)View Fiona Omeenyo
Fiona Omeenyo | We Are Sand Beach People
This painting by Fiona has a much lighter feel, where the figures are delineated using reds, pinks and orange against a background of aqua green and darker blue in the sky. It’s almost like an opalescent use of colour, where you have a glowing effect in the figures. That is added to by the blending of the colours merging from a hot pinky red colour down into the golden yellow. In the background, there are long sweeps of colour that look like the ocean below in greens. The sky and the clouds above are a range of blues that are streaked with white.
(Jap 015069)View Fiona Omeenyo
Fiona Omeenyo | Flying Out – To the Sunset
In this painting, Fiona has represented the birds flying out towards the sunset. She has used rich aqua blues in the foreground, and the birds almost flying through it as though they’re dragging the colour off into the much darker horizon colour. This feels very light and ethereal. The lower sections are the ocean. The upper section is another sunset sky that’s rich with reds, tan and orange colours. The bird figures are flying across this landscape of the sea and off into the distance. There are the darker colours along the horizon representing the sunset.
(Jap 014983)View Fiona Omeenyo
Fiona Omeenyo | Fading Into The Lands
Fiona has called this painting Fading Into the Lands. She has used golden range colours, the browns and golds of the figures which make up a cluster in the centre of the painting. One of the interesting things about this painting is all the activity in the paint is in a vertical direction. She has dragged the colours of the background down and they are mottled and blending, but they move in vertical bends. The people seem much more isolated into a group because of the flow of the colours. This painting is constructed with very warm colours in the centre section of the painting. The outer areas merge through purple colours into light blues and aqua blue tones.
(Jap 014977)View Fiona Omeenyo
Fiona Omeenyo | Family Get Together
This painting is an example of how Fiona uses colour to create a sense of the time of day. This group is dominated by faded pink tones, very much after the sun has set and evening is falling. The warm dusty pink colours are blended into blue greys and mauve greys as the light fades down over the land and higher up in the sky. The figures in profile are marked back to darker colours, so they’re more like silhouettes against a late evening sky. The palette itself suggests, certainly, that the day has gone. It has the mood of early twilight. This effect is entirely created through the colour palette that the artist has selected.
(Jap 014146)View Fiona Omeenyo
Fiona Omeenyo | Out to the Horizon
In this painting the artist has shown birds flying off towards a horizon with a highly stylised sun motif on one side. There are concentric circles and the waving lines below representing the sea. There’s a jade green colour in the sea, the birds, and the sun, all pulling the composition together. In the background, the sky has tones of red going through to deep, reddy brown. In this way, the artist has reduced this composition down into two sets of contrast. The green tones for all the active elements of the painting, the sea, the birds, and the sun, and the reddy brown colours being the distant sky. Fiona has referred to the birds as being both the spirits of living people and the parent ancestors, her totem image from her home country. So, there’s a slightly sombre or solemn sense as these birds fly across the deep red sky that this is suggesting the mood of something departing.
(Jap 013693)View Fiona Omeenyo