remembering Ian Willding

10 December 1954 - 9 August 2016

an amazing and talented man
who will be sadly missed

Ian is a well-known Australian painter, working in a unique abstract style. He was born in Forbes, New South Wales, and moved to Adelaide in 1989.

Ian was proud of his indigenous background and acknowledged a growing awareness of the depth of his heritage. He has exhibited widely throughout South Australia, won numerous awards, and has been showcased in international publications.

He joined the Red House Group in 1994, and served the Exhibition Committee and RHG Board of Management for over twenty years. Ian played a crucial role in overseeing the display of each exhibition at Gallery M, and also found time in his busy schedule to volunteer at opening nights and other events at Gallery M. His dedication was extraordinary.

Ian worked at Suneden Special School for sixteen years as their Resident Artist. His kind and gentle nature and his respect and delight for their special needs students was always evident. He was also responsible for the annual high profile Suneden Art Exhibition.

In recent years Ian worked from his own studio at Adelaide Central Studios Collective in the city, the longest continually running studio in Australia.

He found literature a source of inspiration, and often incorporated the physical qualities of text within his work. Ian’s paintings are vibrant and colourful, created using a range of media.

Ian is a magnificent painter, a wonderful human being. He brought a sense of calm and gentleness, and engagement with visual art practice, that inspired all of us.*

*from commentary by Chris Orchard at SALA launch, Aug 16.
  photograph (left) by Denys Finney.

Dr Christine Nicholls wrote an article about Ian in the Asian Art News, July/August 2010
Ceaseless Patterns of Being