Julian Ashton Art School

Home / Education / Ateliers

Julian Ashton Art School

Website: http://www.julianashtonartschool.com.au

Email: enquiries@julianashtonartschool.com.au

117 George St, The Rocks, The Rocks, Australia

  • Details
  • Faculty
  • Instructor Works
  • Student Works
  • Other Images




THE JULIAN ASHTON ART SCHOOL was founded by Julian Rossi Ashton in 1890 




Art comes from the heart and Technique is the key!


Mr Henry Cornwallis Gibbons was the Principal of the Julian Ashton Art School from 1942 to 1960.  He was once asked if there was a unifying principle underlying the unique achievements of the students; and he replied,  “Ashton used to say to me, Teach them to see, Gibbons, to see the beauty of the form, the tone and the colour of the world around them and represent it on paper and canvas.  Individuality is to be fostered at all times, in the knowledge that technique is the vehicle of the creative spirit.” 


It is the philosophy of this School to encourage fine drawing and sound practice in the craft of painting.


I was fortunate to have Mr Gibbons as my teacher when I entered the school as a raw young student. He was nearing the end of a great teaching career and his students read like a Who’s Who of Australian Art. He was a fine painter, who had worked with George Washington Lambert and he engendered in his student by dint of his wisdom and knowledge a passion for looking and searching.  He would explain drawing by drawing. A little diagram or sketch would be placed on the paper alongside your work which graphically answered your questions. We were encouraged to set a standard for ourselves and not to be easily satisfied. Julian Ashton started the famous Julian Ashton Art School with a vision that it still embodies to this day and Henry Gibbons and many others have carried on his legacy. I believe Julian Ashton and Henry Gibbons would be pleased and proud to see the school now, as would my uncle, J Richard Ashton, who ran the school after Mr Gibbons retired.  There is no doubt that as a result of the efforts of a very talented body of fine artists, who happen as well to be good teachers, the high reputation of the School continues unabated. We are fortunate as a school community – good teachers attract good students.


The School is important in two special ways.


Firstly it is one of the very few places in the world where a student may gain basic skills and pursue a personal course to the very highest level of technical prowess without being distracted by the need to engage with current theories about what art is. Theory in art  generally at this time seems to have a literary basis and is an ongoing debate.  New developments in art should be examined and if seen to be valid by the student, and explored, because two things are certain, the good art of the future will be good in a new way and, in any case, though many have tried, as our famous ex student John Olsen said; “You can`t hold art back.”  We are on a journey and no one with any certainty can predict the direction of fine art in a society expanding in knowledge, communications and technical versatility at an unparalleled speed. There may be many simultaneous and equally valid directions


However with a degree of confidence we may still presume that, “A thing of beauty is a joy forever” and that our reaffirmation of the ancient skills of drawing and painting, is personal and that to pursue an untrammelled direction gives the greatest pleasure and satisfaction to each of us as individual artists. The acquired basic skills we base our work on becomes our gift to the School and what we pass on.  The sure guarantee we have of the philosophy of the School continuing is the continuing transfer of those technical skills. Put simply, our students become our teachers. It was ever thus.


Secondly, The Julian Ashton Art School is  Australia’s only embodiment of a continuous unbroken  tradition in the Atelier style of teaching art and as such is living history. As a physical entity we hold it in trust. With some confidence we can hope that an institution which has regenerated itself for over 120 years, occupying no  permanent  home, but enjoying the continuing love and support of successive generations of students will be able to move through its second century with ease and that thereby its long term future is assured. The National Trust regards us as a living national treasure. Preserving that living history is our responsibility. We hold the School precious as those before have known and valued it, for future generations of students.


Julian Ashton was still travelling the the school to teach in his ninetieth year. Mr Gibbons was here into his late eighties  I have had the privilege of being the Principal of this school for twenty two years and look forward to welcoming shining faces to the school for many years into the future.   I have seen governments rise and fall and fashions in art come and go. The School just carries on regardless and just when I have felt that I have seen it all – another – and then another, brilliant young person arrives at the door of the school and by dint of talent and perseverance gives us a new vision of the world.

Paul Ashton Delprat

Principal, Julian Ashton Art School

Website http://www.julianashtonartschool.com.au
Email enquiries@julianashtonartschool.com.au
Founded 1890
Course languages (Check multiple if applicable) English
Part-Time Instructors 18
Students 190
Accommodation No

Part time: AUD 400 / semester

Full time: AUD 9990 / year

Julian Ashton Art School

117 George St, The Rocks

The Rocks, NSW, Australia


Chris Browne


Chris Browne's main interest has been the realistic mode of expression, the investigation of two and three dimensional space within the frame. He studied at the Julian Ashton Art School and the Florence Academy of Art in the 90's. His study in Italy and Europe confirmed and sharpened his interest in architectural spaces, particularly Classical and Renaissance architecture and how to place the figure within it. He currently teaches at the Julian Ashton Art School.

Isabelle Chouinard


In 2006, Isabelle began studying painting and drawing at Julian Ashton Art School and was awarded the school’s Thea Proctor scholarship in 2009. Isabelle pursued further studies at the Atelier de Bresoles in Montreal and at Studio Escalier in France. An emerging artist, Isabelle’s work is sold in both Australia and Canada. She has been a finalist in many competitions, including the Mosman Art Prize, Sydney, the Eutick Memorial Still Life Award in Coffs Harbour, the A.M.E. Bale Travelling Scholarship and Art Prize in Melbourne, the Doug Moran Portrait Prize and the Society of Portrait Painters of America.

Keith Dewel


1985 - '92. - Studied at The JAAS 1993 - European study tour 1996 - Winner Alice Bale Travelling. Scholarship 1997 - Studied at Florence Academy Italy 1997 - '98 - Eurooean Study Tour 1994 to the present - Various Group. Exhibitions 1994 to the present - Teaching at JAAS

Alberto Proietta


Alberto Proietta trained at the Julian Ashton Art School, where he has been teaching since 2002. His artistic career has been anything but straight-forward. Praised for a certain aptitude since childhood, he nonetheless looked over the shoulder of more talented peers who could pull an accurate drawing ‘out of nowhere’, knowing very well that he was missing something fundamental. He never accepted that one either had ‘the gift’, or not. Graduating from high school in 1985, he aspired to make a career of painting; but the kind of training he needed, was apparently unavailable and evidently out of favour. Slowly pushing practical skills aside, he graduated from Sydney University in 1989 with a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) in art history and philosophy. With the academic context long behind him, his artistic practice was revived in 1995 by his encounter with a wood carver on holidays from the U.S.: Peter Bauer. Shortly after, he attended the ‘Whistlewood’ school for wood carving in Sydney, founded by Graham Bull. A year later, an unexpected reconnection with his family in Italy, synchronously led him to the Julian Ashton Art School. An English proverb states that ‘What’s bred in the bone, will out in the flesh’. Alberto is Italian-born and bilingual by necessity. As an immigrant, the need to understand and translate, was imperative to his dual identity. With hindsight, that issue provided the stimulus in art school, for his unrelenting search for ‘the sense behind the marks’ — eventually informing his current approach to teaching. By the time he enrolled, he no longer aspired to make a living from painting, as he did in his youth. It was just time to understand. That was not achieved without struggle; but it was the constructive struggle of an emergent awareness. He attended classes between 1996 and 1999, winning a scholarship for the following year and a diploma in 2001. His work is in private collections in Australia, Italy and the U.S.

Sally Ryan


Sally Ryan’s style is best described as contemporary realism with an emphasis on portraiture although her practice includes all genres of painting. The human subject has remained a point of interest throughout her career and after a few years of intensive study at the Julian Ashton Art School (including a Scholarship in 2010), portraiture and figurative art had become her main focus. Sally then followed up this training with workshops at Studio Escalier in Paris and the Grand Central Academy in New York. Sally now works in oils, graphite and charcoal and has been recognized in competitions across Australia and internationally. She is a member of Portrait Artists Australia and has had works exhibited with this organisation at the Art House Gallery, NSW Parliament House and the Australian Embassy in Washington. In 2016 she had a portrait of the former premier, Ted Baillieu, unveiled in the Parliament of Victoria and also painted Judith Poole, retiring headmistress of Abbotsleigh Girls School.  Sally teaches portraiture and figure painting at the Julian Ashton Art School. She has a studio in Mt Kuring gai, Sydney, and is available for commissions. Archibald (2013) Salon des Refuses (2016, 2018) Doug Moran (2012, semi-finalist 2014, 2017) Winner - Kennedy Prize (2014,finalist 2017) Black Swan Portrait Prize (2013, 2015, 2017) Portia Geach Memorial Award (2010,2015,2016) Eutick Memorial Still Life Award (2016) Adelaide Perry Drawing Prize (2011, 2012) Shirley Hannan Portrait Prize (2012) Mortimore Prize (2008, 2010, 2011, 2012), winning two sections. AME Bale Painting Prize (2016) ARC International Salon (2014, 2015, 2016) Nora Heysen Centenary Still Life Award – Judges Commendation (2011) Portrait Society of America Members Competition (2017) Ravenwood Art Prize for Women (2018)

Paul Delprat


Paul Delprat was born in 1942 in Sydney where he was educated at The Sydney Grammar School. His first artistic studies were with his grandfather, J Howard Ashton, later with Henry C Gibbons and his uncle J Richard Ashton at the Julian Ashton Art School, graduating with a Diploma. Whilst an art student Delprat won The Henry Gibbons Drawing Prize, The Phillip Muskett Landscape Prize, The Le Gay Brereton Drawing Prize at the Art Gallery of New South Wales and The Waratah Festival Sculpture and Drawing Prizes awarded by Mr Rupert Murdoch. He continued his studies in the galleries of London and Paris. He created the paintings, drawings and sculptures for the Michael Powell film “Age Of Consent” based on a novel by Norman Lindsay, starring James Mason and Dame Helen Mirren. Included in his other work for film were the paintings, pastels and drawings he created for “Sirens” starring Elle McPherson, Portia De Rossi and Sam Neill. His art is represented in the National Gallery, Canberra, Regional galleries, the B.H.P collection and other public and private collections. Having held over twenty, one man exhibitions in Sydney he has also held exhibitions in London, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Newcastle. His work has been selected for the Archibald, Sulman and Wynne Exhibitions. Before joining the Julian Ashton Art School as Principal in 1988, he taught privately and at Sydney and N.S.W Universities, Newington College, and the Australian Independent International School. In 1990, at the Julian Ashton Art school, he inaugurated the school’s Scholarship Program, commencing with the Sir William Dobell Scholarship sponsored by The Sir William Dobell Foundation. Delprat is Patron of Portrait Artists Australia and The Mosman Art Society and an Associate of the Royal Art Society of New South Wales. He has served as a judge of fine art at many competitions held throughout Australia.

Chris Browne - Figure Study. Pencil and chalk on paper

Chris Browne - Scapula. Oil on marine ply.

Chris Browne - Krista

Chris Browne - French Armrest

Keith Dewell - Charcoal on paper.

Keith Dewell - Charcoal on paper.

Keith Dewell - Study in oil

Keith Dewell untitled

Alberto Proietta - Sweet Little Home Grown Pineapple

Alberto Proietta - Pope Innocent 10th after Alessandro Algardi. Copy of school cast. Plaster.

Alberto Proietta - Feather for Nick. Graphite on paper.

Alberto Proietta - Dad. Graphite pink pastel on red paper.

Isabelle Chouinard - Grand Maman at 89

Isabelle Chouinard - Lemon Cordial Spode

Isabelle Chouinard - Figure Study

Isabelle Chouinard - Still Life in Blue

Sally Ryan - Portrait of the artist's son

Sally Ryan Storylines- Portrait of Michael Caulfield

Sally Ryan - Portrait of Dr Catherine Hamlin AC

Sally Ryan - Portrait of John Wood

Sally Ryan - #theprincewilkins Oil on Linen

Chris - Browne - Portrait Sketch

Chris Browne - Deposition

Sally Ryan - The Widow

Isabelle Chouinard - Portrait Study

Marcus Callum Life Drawing

Krista Brennan - Life drawing after Fortuny

Marcus Callum Portrait of a seated woman

Sam Wade - Hand Study

Gus Carozza - Figure study

Simon Cowell- figure study

Haden Glendining - Study

Mega Buckley - Portrait

Adam Alcorn - Portrait of Jala

Sean Hutton - Portrait

Marie Mansfield - portrait of Frank Giacco

From the skylight of The main school campus

Julian Ashton teaching in the 1920s

Julian Ashton teaching in the 1920s

Inside the main campus - In the 60s

Inside the main campus

In the sculpture section

In the Antiques Section

The main campus - Life Drawing

Inside the main campus