Helen Masin Introduction

Helen Masin is an artist based in Sale Victoria who took part in an artist "swap" as part of Creative Gippsland in 2015. An artist from Baw Baw Shire ( Graeme Myrteza) went to work in Wellington shire( Dargo ) as the other 1/2 of the swap. Helen came to Jindivick and painted for two weekends at the Laurie Collins Red Tree Gallery. She did a number of paintings in acrylic based on her viewing of Jindivick from the air.She was greeted warmly by the local artistic community and was the first person to have a "sort of exhibition" at the Gallery.


Helen is contactable on:

Phone: (03) 5144 7664
Email: rhmasin@bigpond.com
Facebook: Helen Masin Art

HELEN MASIN - May 2015 Helen Masin from Sale has been the Gippsland artist involved in the very first artist exchange programme for Creative Gippsland. This programme is an initiative of the Baw Baw Shire, Creative Gippsland, Jindivick Sculpture Show and Jindivick Progress Association. The artist exchange is an integral part of the theme of “Swap or Exchange” for Creative Gippsland. Wellington Shire swapped artists with the Baw Baw Shire so while Helen has been painting in Jindivick, Graeme Myrteza from Jindivick has been in Dargo in the Wellington Shire.

Helen remembers drawing from a very young age and getting into trouble for drawing on the walls of their house. The family had a set of books called The Bookshelf for Boys and Girls illustrated typically in a 1960s style. The illustrations fascinated Helen so much that she would copy them onto scraps of paper. Of course, all through school, art was her favourite subject and she blames her inability to type on the fact that High School art was also up against typing in the electives. “I am not sure what the teachers were trying to say.”

After High School Helen studied Visual Arts and Photography but it wasn't until years later when she moved to Sale that she decided to "learn" to paint.

“I enrolled into painting and drawing classes at TAFE. This is where I met my lecturer and mentor William (Bill) Young.”

Helen started with acrylics when she started at TAFE and found they suited her style and life style. She speculated on whether she would ever have the patience for oils. These days Helen usually works in acrylics, painting on canvas but more recently has begun using board such as marine ply and mdf as her painting surface. She is enjoying discovering the different way the paint reacts to the smooth surface rather than canvas. The surface Helen uses is appropriate for painting the things she uses for inspiration such as the landscape, a fruit bowl, anything where shape, colour and texture are found. As she said “I get inspiration driving to work, seeing the sunrise over the Wetlands near Sale. Even an exhibition deadline and a gallery curator can be very inspirational.”

Helen also believes her art is a product of having an interest in many artists but she did manage to narrow down her strongest influences to two, a portrait by Evert Ploeg of Deborah Mailman, 1999, at the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra and Arthur Streeton’s, "The purple noon's transparent might", 1896. “The water, colour, the memories it brings back of living the country.” She is however also drawn to the art of Arthur Boyd, Sydney Nolan and Fred Williams. With such a wide range of inspirational sources Helen’s style can be very realistic or again quite abstract or both, especially as viewed in her aerial landscapes. Her realistic approach is evident in bridge paintings and also in still life paintings but she believes there is an element of the abstract in every painting when viewed close up.

It is always interesting to learn how an artist approaches a new piece of work. In Helen’s case she works mainly from photographs that can be cropped and edited until she is satisfied with the resulting image. From these images she uses an overhead projector to project the image onto the canvas. This provides a good base to work from.

Such is Helen’s commitment to excellence that she is very proud to say “I have an aerial landscape painting in a house in Frinton-on-Sea, Essex, England. I share the walls with many of the great Australian artists including Fred Williams, Albert Tucker, Brett Whitely and Kenneth Jack. This amuses me… Williams, Tucker, Whitley and Masin.”

This has to be a highlight of her artistic career but there are others such as selling her first painting in 2008 and then being a John Leslie Finalist at the Gippsland Art Gallery in 2010. Another highlight was in 2012 standing in the middle of the Pantheon in Rome gazing up at the ceiling and recalling Pannini's painting of the Pantheon from her EH Gombrich art book The Story of Art from Year 11. She was once again that 16 year old.

There must always be a note on how the artist would like to develop their artistic style in the future and for Helen that includes realizing the dream of one day enjoying an artist retreat/residency in Tuscany, Italy. However she also reflected that her style “has changed, for the better mostly but I think I have lost some of the innocence in my style that I once had. My early aerial landscapes are much more experimental. But typically your art tends to ebb and flow, you move forward and back, learning as you go. I am not sure how my art will change. I am looking forward to finding out.


Artical by Carol Monson for the BBAA newsletter May /June 2015

Helen Masin Exhibition April 15

Bosc Pears - 2015
Bosc Pears
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Bridge Stratford - 2015
Bridge Stratford
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Burano Blue House - 2015
Burano Blue House
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
coastal Bridge - 2015
coastal Bridge
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Grapes in Yellow bowl - 2015
Grapes in Yellow bowl
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Lake King - 2015
Lake King
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Lakes entrance - 2015
Lakes entrance
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Loch Sport - 2015
Loch Sport
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Ninety Mile beach - 2015
Ninety Mile beach
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Nungurner boat - 2015
Nungurner boat
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Olive pears - 2015
Olive pears
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Roman Pigeon - 2015 (SOLD)
Roman Pigeon
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Sand Hill - 2015
Sand Hill
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
Sandbar and trees and Celelu Green - 2015
Sandbar and trees and Celelu Green
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick
The Grange - 2015
The Grange
a piece Helen Brought with her for the artist in residence stay at Jindivick