As an artist, entrepreneur and workplace chaplain, Shani Alexander is known for her joie de vivre. Alexander’s paintings feature in Town Hall Gallery’s current Community Exhibition ‘Natural Constructs’, a group exhibition highlighting the beauty found in natural and man-made environments.

Creativity is life for Alexander, and although her journey to becoming an artist wasn’t straightforward, every twist and turn has been a vital step towards forming her flourishing art practice and painting programs.

Initially rejected by art school Alexander had to ‘go mainstream.’ Mainstream was nursing, flight attending, training, finally that art degree and the creation of a successful online relocation program moving more than 15,000 families to Australia, making her a grand finalist in the Entrepreneurship Challenge and a Telstra Women’s Business nominee.

Originally from Hawthorn, Alexander raised her family in the Auburn Village, but the sudden death of her beloved brother was the pivotal moment that led to a transformational move to hospital chaplaincy and a tree change to the Yarra Valley where she began producing painting programs for women.

Alexander now offers these painting programs in The Alexander Room at SWell Centre (formerly the Augustine Centre) in Hawthorn. ‘Women come for all sorts of reasons’ says Alexander, ‘whether it is to fulfil a yearning, because they’ve been shut down or given themselves away to family and careers, or they are healing from illness or life’s tough experiences.’ Alexander considers spiritual care and art her callings, ‘I feed and nurture my painters on many levels; and send them home with a beautiful painting and a refreshed sense of themselves. When you give people permission to be bold, big, colourful and expressive they come alive again.....then, just watch that space.’

Shani Alexander’s art and painting programs are a reflection of her self — joyful, generous, abundant and uniquely creative.  See examples of her bold and uplifting floral paintings as part of ‘Natural Constructs’ at Town Hall Gallery, on now until Saturday 22 May. Or view online as part of Town Hall Gallery online exhibitions.

Arts and culture