Anita graduated in Fine Art-Painting, from Prahran College in 1983. During 1984 she became a member of a printmakers and painters studio in Middle Park, Melbourne with Jon Cattapan, Bill Young & Josephine Rowbury. She commenced printmaking with Bill Young at this studio.
Port Jackson Press first published Anita’s prints in 1985-1993 then with Chrysalis Publishing from 1993-1998. She has been a hand colourist for the prints of Michael Leunig, John Spooner and Geoff la Gerche at Chrysalis Publishing. Anita has also assisted ceramic artist Deborah Halpern with her mosaic sculpture, significantly on ’Portal To Another Time And Place’ for the 2005
Helen Lempriere Sculpture Award.
Anita has exhibited her paintings and linocut prints annually at The Muse Gallery of Milawa since 2004. In 2005,2006 & 2007 she shared the exhibition with her brother, metal sculptor, Malcolm Laurence. These exhibitions saw Anita explore ways to combine the textured surfaces with her love of line, colour and paint on paper as well as develop her black and white series of linocuts of the North East landscape. Anita returned to painting on linen and canvas for her 2007 exhibition which explored the emotional impact of the 2006/07 King Valley bushfires in her paintings of the landscape. First hand experience, memory, oral stories and photos of the fires inspired these images. Anita has participated in numerous group exhibitions, especially at the Wangaratta Art Gallery.
In 2007 Anita was a co organiser of the ‘Where There’s Smoke…’ a fire photo exhibition. This project collected photos from the community and collated them into an exhibition with over 100 photos and stories. The exhibition won the Rural City of Wangaratta 2008 Australia Day Community Event Award.
In early 2009 Anita was a visiting artist with Bill Young at the Cork Printmakers, Cork City, Ireland. Her ‘Corcaigh’ linocut print of Cork City was acquired in the Open Section of the 2009 Silk Cut Award for linocut prints , becoming part of the Silk Cut Foundation Collection which is gifted to the National Gallery of Australia . She has also been a finalist in 2010 and 2011.
Since 2009 Anita has been a Artist in Residence each year at The Art Vault, in Mildura, Victoria where she developed a series of artworks exploring the social history of the region in the exhibition ‘SunRaysed’.
Her prints and paintings can be found in the National Australia Bank collection; Wangaratta Art Gallery Collection; Silk Cut Foundation Collection, National Gallery of Australia; Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga and numerous private collections in Australia, Italy, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, UK and the USA.
Read the press release for the Anita Laurence exhibition at Muse Gallery in 2005