Violet McInnes

Violet McInnes Biography (1892-1971)

Violet studied at the National Gallery School in 1909-1910 where she met her husband, professional artist William McInnes. The pair had six children and her career came to a standstill. William suggested that Violet take up painting recreationally, and secretly exhibited several of her works without her knowledge in various exhibitions.

By the 1930s she was exhibiting at the prestigious McLeod Gallery under the non-gender specific name V McInnes, alongside paintings by Streeton, McCubbin, Longstaff and other popular Sydney artists.

The sudden death of her husband and eldest son in 1939 prompted Violet to take her painting very seriously and she held regular exhibitions to support her family. By 1947 her works were firmly established in Australian Art History.

She was one of the first successful Australian female artists who managed to deal with the restrictive elements of the social and domestic expectations of the day while managing to successfully pursue her ambitions as an artist.