Alexander McKenzie was born in 1971 in Sydney, Australia, the son of Scottish migrants. He studied at the Julian Ashton Art School where in 1994 he won both the inaugural Brett Whiteley Scholarship to the school and the Brereton Memorial Prize for draughtsmanship from the Art Gallery of NSW.
Alexander McKenzie is known for his evocative luminous landscape paintings which recall both the themes of Western symbolist painting and the techniques of the 15th Century Dutch Old Masters. Increasingly Alexander McKenzie’s paintings evoke a strong narrative content whilst retaining his preoccupation with the effects of light and atmosphere.
In the 2007 catalogue essay for Halflight, Belinda Scerri wrote“McKenzie’s work is distinguished by its technical proficiency, inspired design and execution. His paintings exemplify virtuosic paint handling with sharply observed detail and dreamy sfumato….McKenzie considers art as a medium between the visible and the invisible. He eschews allegorism in favour of implied narrative. He allows the mood and season of his landscapes, and the objects within them, to speak to the viewer directly”.
In Alexander McKenzie’s view of the landscape, spirituality is paramount. It is a place of contrasting emotions: you feel alive and, at the same time, aware of your own mortality.
Alexander McKenzie has exhibited extensively with over 20 solo exhibitions in both Australia and the United Kingdom since 1996. He is a five time finalist in the Archibald Prize for portraiture at the Art Gallery of NSW, a seven time finalist in the Wynne Prize for Landscape painting and has been in numerous group exhibitions including the Blake Prize for Religious Art, The Gilchrist Fisher Award London, ART London, The British Art Fair, The Glasgow Art Fair, Dublin Art Fair and the Auckland Art Fair.