Gillian McConnell was born in Cooma NSW Australia in 1958. She emigrated to Canada in 1964 and grew up in Montréal Québec. Gillian attained a Bachelor of Fine Art (Hons) with a major in etching and a minor in Art History from Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario (1980). She has subsequently studied and worked in Textile Design, Fashion Design, Multimedia, Web Design and Direct Marketing.
A talented textile and graphic artist, she has produced designs for a myriad of end products including corporate Identity, promotional material, websites, fashion fabrics, custom-made rugs and tourist merchandise. Gillian’s rug designs appeared in several magazines including a feature article in the Australian Good Housekeeping, February 1987.
Gillian began painting in 1997 and developed a unique visual signature incorporating collage. An interdisciplinary artist, she creates message-driven work in a wide variety of media since.
In 2009, Gillian co-founded OXOgraphy, a conceptual art collective. She has applied her curatorial skills to the conception, staging and promotion of many successful group and solo exhibitions since 1998, including a critically successful, inaugural OXOgraphy exhibition in 2012.
After winning several prizes in regional art exhibitions in Australia, Gillian was awarded 1st prize in The Underlying Spirit: An Homage to Emily Carr, in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada (2011).
Gillian lives and creates on Salt Spring Island, BC where has developed a following for her workshops in expressive drawing, abstraction, composition and critique. In her spare time, Gillian does framing for Pegasus Gallery of Canadian Art, models for drawing groups, volunteers for the Salt Spring Arts Council, runs with Salt Spring Sneakers and plays music.