Mary Hennekam, born in Reading, England, arrived in Australia with her Irish parents in 1949. Educated at Kildare College and Brigidine Teachers’ College and became a primary schoolteacher. She taught in Victorian primary schools for four years, a further two years teaching in London as a ‘temp’ in some of the city’s roughest schools, a daunting experience for a young teacher from overseas. Resuming teaching in Melbourne, Mary, who had always nursed a passion for art, commenced a Fine Arts degree at Prahran Technical College. Marriage, helping her husband run a farm business and raising a family of three children effectively shelved her degree course for several years.
Returning to art study in the mid ’70s, Mary attended Frankston TAFE. Unable to find any creative’ response to the course, she began specialist course studies with various distinguished artists over a number of years and so reached her own distinctive style that has won her recognition as an award winning artist.
Mary Hennekam’s paintings are hung in many public and private collections throughout Australia and overseas.