Local self taught artist Kate Twhigg grew up in Auckland, she travelled abroad, returning to forge careers in hospitality and the film industry. Moving to Hawke’s Bay in 2000 Twhigg began painting portraits while at home raising her 5 children and in 2013 joined the Humanity Painters weekly group classes under the tutorage of Helen Kerridge. Twhigg has exhibited in group shows in Hawke’s Bay and Wellington. A finalist in the 2016 Adam Portraiture Award, Twhigg’s portrait of Dick Frizzell travelled throughout  NZ and was purchased privately, then gifted to the NZ Portrait Gallery.

Working mostly in pastel Twhigg began a series of expressive portraits (influenced by Italian renaissance paintings of angels and madonnas) portraying them as large close up faces. She focused on their innocence and vulnerability.

The Dick Frizell portrait is the first in a new series called “Celebrate”, which celebrates inspiring New Zealanders, past and present who have made significant contributions in their particular field. 

“Faces and the stories they tell have always been hugely fascinating and mesmerising to me. I try to capture the essence of the character I am painting and through the process of playing with light and colour I get to feel close to the subject whether they are real or fictional.”