Australian-born Simon Gunning has lived in New Orleans’ Bywater neighborhood for over 30 years. His appreciation for the local scenery has never waned, as is evident in his renowned, intricately-composed oil paintings of the Southern Louisiana landscape. His compositions reflect familiar scenes – lush swamps interrupted only by egrets, ibises and anhingas; ships lined up in the winding Mississippi river; industrial cargo lifts and cranes dotted with spotlights reflecting in the placid water; dogs and cats frolicking in streets lined with shotgun homes and jutting stoops. Despite his veneration, his compositions are never sentimentalized. His edgy style of painting has been described as “an iconic personal statement about life, death, sorrow, and a love affair with an exotic land.” He has a startling ability to capture scenes at the most felicitous time of day, rendering the light and color that is so unique to the landscape.
Simon Gunning was born in Sydney, Australia in 1956. He studied painting and drawing from 1976-1978 at the National Gallery School of Art and the Victorian College of Art in Melbourne, Australia. In 1999, he was awarded a Visual Artist Fellowship by the Louisiana Division of the Arts. His work is included in many public and private collections including the New Orleans Museum of Art; Percent for Art Collection at Louis Armstrong International Airport and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, all in New Orleans; as well as in private and corporate collections in Paris, London, Los Angeles, and Australia.