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Jenni Murphy grew up in London – a place she loves spending time to this day. One of seven children, she says of her childhood: “My early years were spent perhaps running a little wild, but mostly “inventing” and “imagining” new games. It was a perfect childhood; simple and beautiful, full of camping, foraging and freedom, with my Dad being the butt of all the jokes (he had five girls what did he expect?!).
She later attended Loughborough University, where her love for painting and storytelling developed throughout her degree in Visual Communication. She knew it was the only thing she wanted to do; “In order to leave home – and the bunkbed I shared with my sister – I had a brief stint working in an office in central London. One year, I designed the company Christmas card and my boss kindly told me she could find someone else to load the printer – I needed to go out and “do art”.”
Almost ten years on and she hasn’t looked back; Jenni’s work now graces walls across the country and the world in places such as Australia and Singapore.
Now living and working in Norwich with a family of her own, her studio is full of scribbles of ideas and splashes of paint. Jenni’s ideas come from working in a reportage style; armed with a sketchbook she takes real people and situations, filtering them through her imaginings and daydreams to create vibrant images of colourful worlds. “There is something so special about having real people and their stories in my paintings, they make for such a rich image… As I shut my studio door at the end of the day, I aim to have created something funny and quirky, filled with people and stories that are uplifting through their joyful, positive outlook, sparking happiness and shared memories.” Working in acrylic on panel which has been under painted in order to intensify the colours, Jenni Murphy slowly builds up the layers, scaling and repeating the leitmotifs until they evoke a sense of wonder and magic.