About Veena

Based in Melbourne, Australia, Veena Merchant is a visual artist working with a range of mediums and techniques. Her works combine abstract, geometric and natural forms to create richly coloured compositions. Informed by both her Indian heritage and by her keen observations of nature and places, her painting reveals a wealth of personal experience and creative insights. Memories, experiences, impressions and perceptions all get filtered through her mind to be transformed into an highly individual body of work.

Veena particularly enjoys working with the water-based media: Acrylics, Watercolours and Gouache. Her explorations of watercolour on YUPO paper have enabled the development of a range of techniques that are distinct to her practice. Her technical facility adds to the unique qualities of her art, with their explosion of colours, patterns and textures.


Artist Statement

My art is very much shaped by my story.

I grew up in India with strong boundaries and high expectations from my traditional, loving and well meaning family. My artistic inclinations were discouraged in favour of academic pursuits which resulted in me obtaining my medical degree. Demands of work, family life, home and children followed and all took priority. For years, my artistic cravings remained a burning ache.

When I was finally free to follow my heart, I found myself exploding with ideas. Self-taught and constantly experimenting, I fast expanded beyond being a ‘hobby artist’. However, as my work started taking its own identity, self doubts set in and I started to second guess myself. It took formal studies at RMIT and a Diploma in Visual Arts to make me realise that my wild ideas were not to be doubted, but rather, celebrated.

My painting is inspired by things that move me. Poetry, words, songs, memories, emotions, and nature in all it’s glory ...... they all have a visual association, real or imagined. Memories of places and landscapes are often compartmentalised as ‘mental maps’ and ‘bird’s eye views’. In my painting, landscapes may take an abstract form, more representative of my internal dialogue. Feelings and emotions evoked by words of a poem or a song get filtered and find expression as visual elements, manifested in a myriad of colours, textures, patterns and abstract mark making. Whatever the starting point, the painting process always becomes intuitive and a self powering force. I have learned to overcome my doubts and enjoy my experiments, letting my work evolve naturally. Restrictions and limitations of my earlier life have shaped my desire for total freedom -through my art. My style oscillates between Contemporary with abstract elements and Abstract with representative elements. I have been asked what do the patterns in many of my works represent. To me, often they are symbolic of the vibes I feel, and sometimes, just because I can !



Bachelor of Medicine & Bachelor of Surgery (Bombay University)
Diploma in Visual Arts (RMIT) 2019.

Many of Veena’s paintings are held in private collections in Australia, New Zealand, and India.

Solo Exhibitions


Lyrical Impressions’ at Oak Hill Gallery, Mornington.

Group Exhibitions


Group Show, Oak Hill Gallery, Mornington


Group Exhibition Street, Road, Lane at the First Site Gallery, Melbourne
Group show RMIT Visual Arts
Group Exhibition Oak Hill Gallery, Mornington


Group Exhibition Oak Hill Gallery, Mornington
CSBC Group exhibition ‘A Place at the Table’
King Valley Art Show


Camberwell Art Show
CSBC group show 'Salt of the Earth'
John Shaw Neilson Acquisitive art prize show
Group Exhibition Oak Hill Gallery, Mornington
Group Exhibition, John Shaw Neilson Acquisitive Prize, Penola, S.A


Group Show: Art on Burgundy
Group show CSBC Exhibition ‘Fire and Life’, (Finalist and a prizewinner)
Camberwell Art Show
The Bayside Art Show
Belle Arti Prize Group Show