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Alison (Ali) Richardson was born in England in 1958 and migrated with her family to Australia in 1961 as part of the 10Pound Pom Scheme. Ali currently lives in Melbourne. Ali works in mixed media and has exhibited in the St Kilda postcards competition/exhibition and held several solo exhibitions. Ali likes to explore current global themes in her work exploring the effects of global warming on our coral reef systems, using air drying modelling clay, crystals and other objects. Most recently her focus has been an expression of world issues including refugees and immigration, where she has painted a series of Purple People. Ali regularly works with a group of artists out of Studio Beaumaris in Melbourne and has been a past vice president of the Brighton Art Society (2014). Ali is currently mentored by Barbara McLean, a renown Melbourne artist.
She started making art from a young age. "As a school student art was my favourite subject" says Ali. She was selected for special art school at 14 in Perth, Western Australia as part of a high school art program. As an adult she has never stopped taking classes and since 1985 has taken at least one class per week. Ali's passion for learning has never ceased, and she commented that "the more I learn, the more I realise there is much more to learn!"
Currently living in Melbourne Australia, her dream is to be a full-time artist, who is able to fulfil her passions and support herself. Like many artists, she works a "day" job to pay the bills but her other waking hours are focused on making. Ali believes that "Without creative making, my inner self and life feel unbalanced, out of sync with who I am and the universal energy living inside us all. I make because I must."
Ali has dabbled in many art forms, including sculpture (since 1985) and more recently (since 2013) in painting. In 2014 she began creating work that spoke to the issue of climate change, of the changing nature of the coral reef systems in the world. The Oceania series used an air drying modelling clay with embedded Swarovski crystals representing the memories of the bleached corals. Periodically in this series, white men appear in their corporate suits looking on at the ensuing global disaster, while doing nothing.
During 2017 Ali began painting her Purple People series in response to the crisis around refugees and immigration across the world. These purple people stories begin with their homelands being devastated and the story continues depicting their journeys to new lands. In this series Ali says she feels influenced by the drawings of Shaun Tan, an Australian artist whose work she greatly admires.