Michael Weitnauer was born in Hobart, Australia, but has a close connection with Berlin, where both his parents grew up and lived before emigrating to Australia in 1952. He has also spent periods of time in Europe, particularly in Berlin and Bavaria.
Weitnauer comes from a family with a strong art background – his grandfather, Arthur Fischer, was a renowned German landscape and portrait painter based in Berlin; and his mother, who studied at the Berlin School of Applied Art, ensured that drawing and painting were an important part of family life. At age eight Weitnauer had his first set of oil paints and was entering school art competitions.
In the mid-seventies, after living in Germany and working for a time at the Berlin Museum, Weitnauer started to develop a committed interest in painting. In particular, early to mid-twentieth century European painters had the greatest impact on him, especially Klee, Mirõ and Kandinsky. From the late-seventies to the mid-eighties he worked at developing his skills in drawing and painting.
In 1986, after becoming particularly inspired by the work of Australian painter Fred Williams, Weitnauer began to develop a keen interest in landscape painting. Williams’ work had an enormous influence on him and motivated him to apply himself more seriously to his painting. A number of modern contemporary German painters have also had a strong influence on him, including Hans Hofmann, Gerhard Richter, Georg Baselitz and Anselm Kiefer.
In the past twenty nine years Weitnauer has held 58 solo exhibitions and participated in over 40 group shows around Australia and overseas.
In this time he has also won and been a finalist in a number of major art awards, including The Glover Prize, The Hutchins Art Prize and The Wrest Point Art Award.
Michael Weitnauer is a notable artist who has built a reputation for uniquely depicting the Tasmanian & Australian landscape in both the representational and abstract form. His work is constantly evolving as he pushes the boundaries of his painting practice. He belongs to a respected group of contemporary Tasmanian artists whose works are constantly in demand and whose reputations are growing nationally and overseas.
Weitnauer’s paintings are held in private, corporate and institutional collections in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, Singapore, Canada, USA, UK and throughout Europe. He is a graduate of the University of Tasmania.
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