Ground Up



WHEN: 23 Nov 2017 – 26 Nov 2017


In Ground Up, John Sheehy explores the process of how his abstract paintings are made, while celebrating the natural and architectural features of the four cities John has lived in over the last decade. In the unique setting of 107’s combined art-making and exhibition space, viewers are invited to consider three components of this theme:

  • the people who make the art possible – from the canvas stretcher and maker, to the mentors, gallerists, framers, collaborators and audience,
  • the places that inspire the creativity – a tale of John’s journey from Sydney to London, Moscow and New York, and the role of studio and gallery, and
  • the process of making the objects – from the conceptual wanderings and small-scale studies to the distinctive, layered and naïve mark-making that has characterised John’s works for over a decade.
    Ground Up is John’s fifth Sydney show and his first at 107. Start on the Ground floor and make your way Up.

Gallery open Tuesday–Saturday 11am–6pm | Sunday 11am–4pm.

About John Sheehy

John Sheehy is a Sydney-based painter. He has spent five of the last ten years living in London, Moscow and New York. He now lives in Potts Point.

John’s works move in one of two directions – vibrant, gestural and expressive pieces inspired by the abstract expressionists of Sydney and New York in the 1950s and 1960s, or subtle, naïve line work and mark-making, inspired by John’s interest in creating drawn paintings and painted drawings.
Both styles interrogate the role of chance in abstraction and contain a heavy architectural element, often drawing on the competing horizontal and vertical structural forces of the industrial and commercial landmarks of some of the world’s major cities. There is a temporal nature to John’s works which is based on the actual time it takes for paint to dry and for layers of materials to be carved into, supplemented and re-assembled.

He has exhibited in several group and private shows in Woolloomooloo, Paddington, Potts Point, Double Bay and Brunswick, Melbourne. He was selected as one of 33 young Australian artists commissioned to create an artwork for World Youth Day in 2008 and was a finalist at the first annual Brunswick Street Art Prize in Melbourne. John’s works are included in private collections globally.