Over a decade of Art: Est. 2013

Textured Art – Impasto Style

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  • Kerry-Anne Blanket
  • 31/07/2023

Impasto painting is a technique in which paint is applied to a surface in thick, textured layers, creating a three-dimensional effect. The term “impasto” comes from the Italian word for “paste” or “dough,” reflecting the thick and heavy quality of the paint. It is a timeless art trend collectors love, and when executed by the right artist the result is incredible.  

Impasto painting has long been associated with the work of Vincent van Gogh, who used the technique to create his signature expressive style. Other artists who have used impasto painting include Rembrandt, Titian, and Jackson Pollock. Here in Australia, Sally West has become the pre-eminent artist using this style and is known internationally for her incredible plein air impasto beach paintings. Her artworks are a must-have for esteemed art collectors, celebrities, and politicians. With her smaller affordable collection now available, an entire new wave of younger collectors are seizing the opportunity to invest in a piece of the famous series. 


Textured Beach Painting on the Easel at Bondi Beach
Sally West created this impasto style work “en plein air”


To create an impasto painting, she uses a selection of palette knives in various sizes to apply the paint in thick, bold strokes. She works relatively quickly ‘en plein air’ working to confidently build up layers of color and texture. Her technique creates a range of effects, from smooth and subtle to rough and highly tactile areas across the canvas surface.


Sally West’s palette and palette knife


Impasto painting can be achieved with a variety of paint media including oil, acrylic, and even watercolor. West’s medium of choice is oil paint. It is an expensive option which takes a long time to dry – but the result is well-worth it. The finish is luxurious, glossy, and highly satisfying to the eye. Her beach paintings focus on the surf and sand which perfectly bring together warm and cool palettes. He inclusion of beachgoers, surfers and the beloved Australian surf lifesaving patrol teams bring dramatic bold elements to the natural subtle and nuanced coastal landscape views. It is a popular series which is highly textured and visually engaging to people all over the world.


Connect with us now and we will help you find the perfect impasto painting by Sally West

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Phone 1300 78 7773


Oil Paints
En plein air palette at MacMasters Beach NSW
Surf and patrol in paint

Kerry-Anne Blanket, Director & Curator - KAB Gallery
About the author

Kerry-Anne Blanket

Director & Curator - KAB Gallery

KAB Gallery’s Kerry-Anne Blanket holds a Bachelor of Visual Arts and two Masters degrees (Hons) from the University of Sydney. With an extensive career in art education along with the management of museums and investment art galleries, Kerry-Anne can offer premier art consulting to her clients and source specially requested works. 

She has a keen eye for detail, comprehensive art market knowledge and a love of all things beautiful. Kerry-Anne works directly with artists and collectors alike to curate interesting and eclectic exhibitions.