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Late Bloomer Artist Michael Kiely, Debut Exhibition

Michael Kiely

Recently, Jessica Kiely approached me about a story regarding her father, Michael Kiely, and I thought this is a beautiful story to share as Father's Day approaches. For those of us that have lost our dad, and for those that will sometime in the future, remember the beautiful lessons he taught you.

Michael has a unique abstract art exhibition coming up in October in Sydney (visit this website to see the works)

It is the first time his art will be seen publicly. And he has an inspiring story and message for us all. That message is to follow our dreams no matter what, as he has been living with Parkinson's disease for 20 years, recently overcame his second cancer and only a few years ago started painting, and his artwork is profound.


Michael first picked up a paintbrush at about seven years old in front of the new Caledonia Hotel in Tamworth. However, thanks to a passerby who remarked that the trees and mountains were not visible in the painting, the seven-year-old Michael became discouraged and put down his paintbrush until his later years. And, when he picked up the brush again, he was not only older, he had Parkinson's Disease. On top of that, Michael also had a cancer diagnosis.

Cancer gave Michael time to reflect on why he was afraid to pick up the paintbrush due to self-doubt, and he realised that with limited time, he should make the most of it, and he took on painting earnestly.

Michael said, "I realised that I was more terrified of putting myself out there as an artist than of dying. It seems absurd, I know. I was worried that others would say, 'Who do you think you are?'. I still worry about that. And the cancer diagnosis spurred me to keep going and give it a go. Now I have a whole exhibition, which is scary, but I know I have to do it. So I started painting and continue to do so because I am afraid, which keeps me going."

Michael Kiely Artist


Michael claims that his subconscious is where he finds his inspiration. Michael has created over 600 works of art but never painted consciously; instead, he has always dug deep into his subconscious. His inspiration comes from reading, watching documentaries, watching movies, learning new things, and looking at the work of other artists, all of which contribute to providing him with a source of ideas.

Michael remarked, "My entire existence has served as motivation for me. Climate change, marketing and advertising, First Nations culture, inspiration from Jackson Pollock, family life, rock 'n' roll, nature and the Australian Bush, these birds here, my grandchildren—all of it!"

Debut Exhibition

On his debut exhibition, Michael said, "I am feeling terrified. We don't know what the market will think. We don't know how their hearts will react. But, you have a go!" Despite this feeling, Michael is grateful that Jessica has put the exhibition together and says his daughter is amazing.

Worlds of Inspiration


“I can't force people to see what they cant see”

“Be outrageous”

What's it like being a painter? Michael - “Oh I'm not a painter. What is a painter? Kids are painters when they paint.”

“I’m trying to say, let’s kick some arse!”

Michael Kiely Artist

“When I look at Blue Poles (by Jackson Pollock), I see the word ‘FREEDOM’ and it's not clear. And yet it is clear to me.”

“I had no control.”

“People want to be given solutions to every problem, when the solution to every problem is not relevant.” - about this artwork

Are you prepared to walk into an active volcano or fly into the sun? It is there to be done.

So if you want to be famous you better get your running shoes on because as soon as you are dead, you strike the bell of ignorance and that is the beginning of the end.

A dangerous man is one who doesn't fear death. A dangerous man is one who knows no fear.

Michael's Advice to Others

"There is not enough art in the world to counteract the evil in the world. More people need to do art and express it in their way, I believe. It is about having a go. Art is greater than evil. Life is not what happens to you, it is how you respond to it. And that is what I have done. Responded to it. And giving it a go! If that inspires others, well….that is pretty cool!"

Yes it is Michael, and we wish you all the very best on your debut exhibition and thank you for sharing it with us.


Michael's Linkedin Profile

After 25 years turning human beings into revenue streams for multinational clients, I went back to the bush. The Millennial Drought was transforming. I discovered the massive capacity farm soils have for capturing and storing airborne carbon (CO2). For the past 8 years we have been engaged in the the battle to remove barriers preventing the most powerful solution to global warming from being activated in the short time the world has in which to make a difference. Today, we have an Act of Parliament to enable farmers to earn farm carbon credits by changing their land management practices to activate Soil Carbon Sequestration. We also have a "Methodology Determination" from the Regulator which is something few thought possible: official recognition of the soil carbon solution. It is based on the belief that the farmers of the world can draw down sufficient CO2 into the 5billion hectares of farmland to keep Global Warming below 2°C while alternative energy sources reach baseload capacity. The operation of carbon farming also restores biodiversity and health to farmlands and adds stability and support to farm families and rural communities. Food security is next on our agenda. The world is losing productive top soil at critical rates just when we need to be rapidly increasing our productive capacity. Food riots, uprisings and military conflicts over access to resources have started already. Carbon Farming can restore soil health rapidly. All obstacles to Soil Security must be removed


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