Robbi Neal

Jellyfish have roamed the seas for at least 500 million years, and possibly 700 million years or more, making them the oldest multi-organ animal. They have stayed with us from the Before Time. When Robbi Neal first saw these small animals, she was immediately filled with hope and reminded that it is the small things that are easy to pass by that hold the biggest truths, the mending, the hope you are looking for. The vibrant beauty of the jellyfish inspired her body of work. Robbi Neal’s first book Sunday Best was a winner of the Varuna HarperCollins Manuscript Award and was published by HarperCollins in 2004. She was awarded two Australia Arts Council Grants for works, which have not yet been published. She was published by Allen & Unwin in two Anthologies in 2006 and 2007. Her second book After Before Time was published on 1 April 2016. After Before Time is about people she had fallen in love with who were also intrinsically connected to the Before Time and that whilst the paintings were inspired by Jellyfish and are literally Jellyfish they are also images of her life in Community.

Robbi Neal trained in Painting at the Victorian College of the Arts. She has won the Footscray City Acquisition Prize twice and has exhibited at Rhumbarellas, Footscray Arts, Hill End and Pantechnicon Galleries. She also exhibited in the Castlemaine Fringe Festival where her paintings were banned by the Catholic Church and her work was subsequently featured on the 7.30 Report and National News Programs. From the beginning of 2009 until recently Robbi, her husband and two of her children had been living in a remote Aboriginal Community.