March 03, 2023

Nicola Welten

By Isa Aalderink
Nicola Welten


The Mandarin Tree is proud to welcome Tauranga based artist Nicola Welten to our talented team of artists here at the gallery.

I’m an expressionist artist working in acrylics. A long time Tauranga local living in Bethlehem but hailing originally from South Auckland, I grew up in a family of painters, photographers & artisans going many generations back. Always creative, it was inevitable that I would end up following the family tradition.

With a love of joyful, vibrant colour palettes and loosely inspired by my love of colourful flower gardens and the New Zealand landscape, I like to escape to the studio as much as possible. The thing I most love about painting compared to other art forms I have worked with in the past, is that the colour possibilities with paint are endless and unlimiting.

I always begin work in an expressive, intuitive way focusing on the process and usually without too much intention except to work with a particular colour palette or sometimes a subject matter. My art reflects a feeling or sensory experience rather than a literal interpretation of a scene.

In the past my landscape works have been related to my obsession with family history. The more I uncovered about my ancestors the more I tried to imagine them and their travails (and travels) especially in Aotearoa’s early colonial days. I often trace their footsteps and imagine what life was like for them, especially the women.

Lately as climate events and other crises take their toll in NZ, I am finding my landscapes are reacting to these events or taking an escapist turn where I create fantasy landscapes to escape to in my imagination.

My floral works are another outlet for my colour obsession and almost hark back to childhood and a feeling of being head high amongst the blooms close up.

I am continuously exploring colour and transparency further and striving to find a balance midway between abstract and representational that resonates for me. The most common response I get from viewers of my work, is that it is uplifting and makes people feel happy.

We have a lovely selection of bright, happy and uplifting originals available in store and online now.

Browse Nicola's collection here or come in store for a closer look.