ROSSOCINABRO | Biography | Roanne O'Donnell | United Kingdom
Contemporary Art in Rome

Roanne O'Donnell 

Artist Statement

Process painter currently working in Scotland on the series of paintings and frottage, 'Surface Work'.

The subject of my work is the process of making it, limitation, restriction and repetition. Restricting my materials and with a strict mark-making action, I deliberately control the painfully slow development and direction. It is a twenty year investigation. The mark is a horizontal line. The most direct I know. The substrate is paper. Binders are limited to oil and cold wax. Materials are restricted to ivory black pigment, graphite and charcoal. The physical process is the monotonous repetitive movement of making lines by bending over paper, laid flat, and drawing the line or moving my paint mixtures across the surface over and over, again and again. The concept is gemination: ”No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man.” Heraclitus of Ephesus.



Born St. Andrews, O’Donnell is an award-winning Scottish painter currently working on the series, 'Surface Work'. She studied Drawing and Painting at the prestigious Edinburgh College of Art and went on to obtain a Masters in Contemporary European Fine. After 18 years of professional practice in Northern Norway, she now has her studios in Andalucia and Fife, Scotland.

The subject of her work is the process of making it, inextricably linked to the concepts and actions of limitation, restriction and repetition. O'Donnell limits her materials to ivory black pigment, graphite, and charcoal, using cold wax and oil as binders on paper. Her work has been exhibited worldwide and collected by such as The Scottish Office, North Norwegian Museum of Art and private collectors. Recent exhibitions include FAB 2020 Contemprary Art Festival, with Outside The Form and UFOFABRIK, Italy, as a finalist in The Verona Art Prize. This year she has been interviewed in contemporary art magazines, ARTHabens Review, Reset Fine Art and Art Reveal Magazine. Her work will be shown with Rossacinabro Gallery Rome in Autumn 2020 and she has been invited to the XIIIth Florence Biennale in 2021. Parallel with her own art practice O’Donnell is a curator and from 2012-16 was Director of the Gallery of Northern Norway, collaborating with the National Museum of Art in Oslo, curating and exhibiting work by Paul McCarthy, Norway 10 Designers and established international and emerging artists.


Latest projects and upcoming shows 2017 - 2021

The Verona Art Prize, UFOFABRIK Contemporary Art Gallery, Moena, Italy, 2020

TEXTUERD, Envision Arts Gallery, International Group Show, 2020

LOST, Lacuna Festival De Arte Lanzarote and Festival De Arte Fuerteventura, Spain, 2020

Lost and Found Booth, Curator, Kim-Ling Morris, Lacuna Festival de Arte, Spain, 2020

The XIIIth Florence Biennale, Fortezza da Basso, Florence, Italy, October 2021

Outside the Form. Curator: Anthoniy Val, FAB 2020, Fringe Arts Bath Contemporary Art Festival, 2020

COLOURS, Grey Cube Gallery, International Online Gallery, 2020

AFTNHS, Artists for the NHS, Covid19, Gallery Different, London, 2020

POST, Curatorial Response to Covid 19, UK, 2020

SELF Group Show, The Artists Pool, Dundas Street Gallery, Edinburgh, 2020

Housekeeping!, Group Show, Jeannie Avent Gallery, London, 2020

Black and White, Group Show. Pineapple Black Arts Gallery, Middlesborough, UK, 2019-2020

Surface Work. Solo Show. Toro Spacio, Ronda, Spain, 2018

BLOW. Collaboration with Claire Carswell MA(RCA), Toro Spacio, Ronda, Spain, 2018

Surface Work Solo Show. Antigua Cine, Montejaque, Spain, 2017


Publications 2020

The FLUX Review, Art, Culture and World Exploration Magazine​, Edition 2, 2020

Art Reveal Contemporary Art Magazine, Edition 53. 2020

ART Habens Art Review, Article on Surface Work, Edition Spring 2020

RESET//, Contemporary Art Platform, UK, Interview and featured article, April 2020

Artist Showcase with New Emergence Art, 2020. Average Art 39, Surface Work 4, for Publication, October 2019



Norwegian State Material Grant II, Oslo, Norway. Nordnorsk Kulturråd Collection.

Tromsø Kunstmuseum, Tromsø, Norway. North Norwegian Museum of Art Collection.

Norwegian State Material Grant I, Oslo, Norway.

Commissioned for Harstad Kommune (Harstad District Council), Harstad, Norway.

Norwegian State Material Grant, Norway.

Awarded Cross Gates Gallery Award, Kentucky, USA and Mall Galleries, London.

Awarded Fiera del Levante Prize, ‘Artists in Puglia’ Exhibition. Bari, Italy.

Clifton College of Art Residency, Bristol.

Artepremio Giovani Fiera del Levante. Artists in Puglia, Bari, Italy. Commissioned by Stephens Architects, Glamis; for Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church, Rosyth, Scotland.

Commissioned by The Scottish Office; St. Andrew’s House Scottish Office HQ, Edinburgh.



Galleri NordNorge, Harstad, Norway Sept 2012 - Aug 2017 ​

FOUNDER AND CEO of A:RT GYMSAL A.S. Harstad, Norway Nov 2004 - July 2016


In November 2004 I bought a Grade 1 Listed heritage military gymnasium to make as my studio. The building was almost 12 000 ft2 so decided to expand the project to include space for other artists. I built a two-storey glass construction inside the gym with 10 studios and showrooms, which I rented to artists, designers, architects and other creative practitioners. It was acclaimed as a unique creative and economic project built on generosity and synergy that occurs when creative people join to support and make opportunities for each other.

O'Donnell Roanne

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Surface #15

oil, cold wax and graphite on paper

45 x 32 cm

59 x 41 cm FRAMED


Available works



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