Felix Kelly was born in Epsom, Auckland in 1914. He attended Kings College (secondary school) and left New Zealand for London in his early twenties, where he worked as a graphic artist and designer for an advertising agency. During the Second World War he served in the Royal Air Force and began to paint seriously in his spare time. He held his first solo exhibition in London in 1943, and after that he began to exhibit annually. He was popular in London social circles and was commissioned by his social contacts to redesign many country houses, paint murals and design theatre sets. He travelled to the United States in the late 1940s where he continued his work, returning to London in the mid-60s. he died in London in 1994. A touring retrospective of his work Felix Kelly: A Kiwi at Brideshead was shown in New Zealand in 2010.
In our database, 113 works by Felix Kelly are listed as being offered for sale, the earliest in 1972, of which 83 (73%) were sold. The highest price recorded for the artist is $49,089 for 'African Capriccio' Post Office, Sierra Leone sold by International Art Centre in May 2020. This year 11 works have been offered for sale. Works by Felix Kelly are held by the Christchurch Art Gallery.
Felix Kelly is listed in the following standard biographical references:
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