Melinda Harper Australian, b. 1965-


Born in Darwin and now Melbourne-based, Harper has exhibited extensively both in Australia and internationally, including many major abstraction exhibitions such as Primavera at the Museum of Contemporary Art, and Good Vibrations; the legacy of Op Art in Australia at the Heide Museum of Modern Art, and Australian Perspecta at the Art Gallery of New South Wales . Harper’s paintings are a celebration of paint, abstraction and optical illusion.

As part of ABC TV 50 year celebrations, Melinda Harper was one of over 20 leading Australian contemporary artists invited to seek inspiration from the ABC TV broadcast archives for the development of exciting new work. ‘Yours, Mine and Ours’ was an ambitious project which saw acclaimed visual artist, Harper contribute to this multi-form exhibition at the Penrith Regional Gallery and The Lewers Bequest., Sydney. With a deep interest in documentaries centering on the Melbourne artists’ colony Monsalvat, Harper based her creation of work on stained glass and pressed metal decorations in one of the Monsalvat buildings.

In her artist’s statement, Melinda says, “ …. I have based the two paintings for the exhibition on metal works by Matcham Skipper that are on the windows at the Boomerang House at Laughing Waters in Eltham. I am interested in the artist colony, the collective and the community…."


Education 1985 Bachelor of Art (Fine Art- Painting), Victoria College, Melbourne

1993-95 Lecturer in Painting, Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne

Solo Exhibitions

2017 New Paintings, NKN Gallery, Melbourne

2015 Colour Sensation: The Works of Melinda Harper, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne

2011 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2011 Prestorius Sweeney House Brisbane

2009 BMG, Gallery, Adelaide

2008 Spectra, Nellie Castan Gallery, Melbourne Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney Sofitel, Global Art projects, Melbourne

2006 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2005 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2004 New paintings, Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne New paintings, Sweeney House, David Pestorius, Brisbane

2003 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2002 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2001 Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney

2000 Art Fair, Exhibition Buildings Melbourne, Anna Schwartz Gallery

1999 Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne Sweeny House, David Pestouris, Brisbane

1997 CDB Gallery, Sydney Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne Jenson gallery, New Zealand

1996 David Pestorius, Brisbane Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne

1994 Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne David Pestorius Gallery, Brisbane

1993 City Gallery, Melbourne 1992 200 Gertrude Street Gallery #116 Store 5, Melbourne 1990 #69 Store 5, Melbourne Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane

1987 Pinacotheca Gallery, Melbourne

Group Exhibitions

2017 Call of the Avant Garde: Construstivism and Australian Art, Heide Museum, Melbourne

2017 Celebrating Australian women abstract artists, Geelong Art Gallery, travelling

2017 Internal Forces, Praxis Gallery, Adelaide

2016 Painting. More Painting, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art

2012 Shifting Geometries, United States Australian Embassy, Washington, USA

2009 Australian Cubism, Heide Museum 0of Modern Art, Melbourne

2008 Later, The Carlton Hotel & Studios, Melbourne Contemporaneous: Australian Contemporary Painting 1, Wangaratta Exhibitions Gallery, Victoria 2 x 2 Group Exhibition, Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney, Melboure Art Fair, Royal Exhibition Building, Melbourne Taking a Line, VAVASOUR GODKIN Gallery, Auckland, NZ

2007 Combine, Heidi Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne

2006 Celebrating 100 Years of the ABC, Penrith Regional Gallery, Sydney

2005 The Bendigo Art Prize, Bendigo

2004 Three-way Abstraction: Works from the Monash University Collection, Monash University, MelbourneGeelong Art Prize, Geelong Art GalleryThe Redlands Westpac Art Prize,, Mosman Art Gallery, Sydney Talking About Abstraction, Ivan Dougherty Gallery, Sydney

2003 Untitled: Abstraction, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney Picnic, Melbourne's Living Museum of the West Inc, Melbourne Alchemy, Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane The First Beijing International Biennale, China Museum of Fine Arts, Beijing, China

2002 Good Vibrations: the legacy of Op Art in Australia, Heide Museum of Modern Art, MelbourneKatharina Grosse, Melinda Harper, Michael Parekowhai, Gow Langsford Gallery,NZ Yellow, David Pestorious Gallery, Brisbane

2001 Love Colour, Studio 91B, Adelaide

2000 Warm Filters, CASA, Adelaide Festival The Chrystal Chain Gang, Auckland City Gallery

1999 Kerrie Poliness, Melinda Harper, Fabrics, Anna Schwartz Gallery

1998 Primavera, The Belinda Jackson exhibition of Young artists, MCA Stephen Bram, Gary Wilson, Rose Nolan, Melinda Harper; Level 2, Art Gallery of New South Wales

1997 Geometric painting in Australia 1941- 1997, University Art Museum Queensland

1996 Spirit and Place, Art in Australia 1861- 1996, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney

1995 Moet and Chandon Traveling Exhibition, Art Gallery of NSW

1994 Melbourne Seven, David Pestorius Gallery, Brisbane 1994 Store 5, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane

1993 Australian Perspecta, Art Gallery of NSW, Sydney

1992 The Caboose,Ars multiplicata, Sydney Octopus, University of South Australia

1991 Subversive Stitch, Monash University Gallery

1990 New Melbourne Abstraction, Art Space, Auckland

1989 Resistance, 200 Gertrude Street, Melbourne

1988 Quartet, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane

1986 Geometric Abstraction, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne

Commissions & Projects

2007 Residency at St Mary's, Penrith, NSW

2002 Australia Council Grant New Work Grant

2001 Residency at the Boomerang House, Eltham

2000 Australia Council Residency in Barcelona, Spain

1999 "Womens Artist Grant" to design, produce and exhibit fabrics with artist Kerrie Poliness. Funded by Arts Victoria and Office of Womans Affairs

1998 CD Rom, An Artistic Interpretation of an Australian Factory. Living Museum of the West Project

1993 Curated an exhibition for the Next Wave Festival

1989 Curated Exhibition "Resistance" 200 Gertrude Street, Melbourne


Heide, Museum of Modern Art

Geelong Art Gallery

The National Gallery, Canberra

The Chartwell Collection, Auckland, NZ

National Gallery of Victoria

Art Gallery of NSW

Art Gallery of SA


Monash University

Queensland University Gallery

Mornington Regional Art Gallery

Gold Coast City Art Gallery

University of Queensland

Private and Corporate Collections


Carolyn Baum and Victoria Lynn (Ed), Australian Perspecta 1993, essay, Art Gallery of NSW, Sydney, 1993

Ben Curnow, Melinda Harper, Art & Australia, Sydney, December 1995

Ben Curnow, Primavera, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 1998