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Reg Mombassa

1951

Institution: Chris O'Doherty
Chris O’Doherty (also known as Reg Mombassa) is an artist and musician, best known for his work in the Australian band Mental as Anything and his graphic art for the surf wear brand Mambo.
He was born in Auckland New Zealand in 1951 and migrated to Australia with his parents and brother in 1969. He enrolled in the National Art School in Sydney and gained his diploma of painting in 1977.
Along with other art students, Mombassa formed the rock band Mental as Anything in 1976. They had extensive success both in Australia and internationally and Mombassa performed with them until 2000 when he left to focus on his art.
He had started working as a freelance artist since 1976 and in 1986 the newly formed Mambo brand hired him. Mombassa's work became synomonus with Mambo and featured on their clothing and other products. So successful was the collaboration between Mambo and Mombassa that numerous exhibitions were held and toured.
Mombassa has also exhibited as a solo artist with his paintings, drawings and prints at Watters Gallery in Darlinghurst since 1975.

Reg Mombassa's work focus's very much on Australia and is a commentary on all its forms - domestic, political, musical and architectural. His images have become familiar to the Australian audience and many of his characters featured in the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.