Lori Pensini was born in 1970 in the wheat belt railway town of Narrogin, population 4500, 192 km south east of Perth. She experienced a typical country upbringing on a small horse farm in the Yillaminning locality in the Narrogin Shire.
Lori was educated at the small local catholic primary school and finished secondary at the local high school in Narrogin before moving to Perth in 1987 to work.
She completed a Certificate of Architectural Drafting in 1990 and headed north with her future husband to his family’s cattle station of 1 million acres, situated along the Hamersley Ranges in the Pilbara, in the north west of Western Australia, about 1400 km from Perth.
Lori became besotted with the raw lifestyle and landscape whilst living on ‘Wyloo” and took to sketching her tries and tribulations as a station wife. Lori now lives on a cattle farm 320 km south of Perth with her husband and two children.
When asked about the inspiration for her lovely paintings, Lori points to her family history of being pioneering stock and her great love for and attachment to the land. She says of her works: “My inspiration comes solely from the remote lifestyle I have enjoyed, with isolation an ally to a fervent and fertile imagination. My childhood and childlike perceptions weave and infinite thread through my canvases, lending the works a sense of naivety. The endurance of the Australian bush tints them with dry humour, wit and a familiarity that engages the viewer on a personal level.”
Lori is essentially a self-taught artist and began painting in 1997. As testimony to her talent, only a year after Lori began painting she was approached by Pilbara Fine Art Gallery in Karratha (350 km away) to exhibit her paintings and in 1999 she held her first solo exhibition.
Lori’s work could be described as naïve and figurative, but also humorous, capturing her fertile imagination and portraying her emotions against a distinctly Australian backdrop. Her paintings are essentially narrative in nature, and while many include the Australian landscape, they generally also tell a story of human emotion, often weith great tenderness and pathos. Her provocative and memorable paintings are also characterised by their lush and strong use of colour, often beautifully blended with the effect of creating a lingering and emotional impact on the viewer.
Since taking up painting full time, Lori has exhibited widely with regular solo and group exhibitions in Western Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. She has also won numerous art awards including: 1st Prize 2002 for the Peoples Choice at the RAS Perth Royal Show (Shell Agricultural Award); 2001 First Prize for an oil landscape at the Cossack Acquisitive Art Awards (judged by Ken Done); 1st Prize, RAS Exhibition at Williams (Best oil painting of Rural Theme); 2000 1st Prize Acquisitive Art Awards, Hamersley Iron (Best Oil Landscape) $2500 (Judge- Robert Juniper); 1999 1st Prize, Cossack Acquisitive Art Award Titan Resource Best Oil Landscape $2000 (Judge-Curator National Gallery); 1998 1st prize Cossack Acquisitive Art Awards, Pilbara Development Commission (Best painting by a Pilbara Artist, $1000); and 1998,1st prize, Geraldton Rotary Art Awards & Auction (Best Landscape).
In addition to having her works in many private collections all over Australia and in the United Kingdom, Texas, New Zealand and Singapore, Lori’s paintings are represented in various corporate and public collections in Australia, including: Shire of Roebourne; Pilbara Development Commission; Robe River Mining; Hamersley Iron Mining; Titan Resources; Robe River Pastoral Co.; Medical Group Geraldton and Worsley Alumina.