The Super Yacht Yanneke, Viaduct Basin, 2002

28 x 41 cm

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Born in 1959 into a family with a truly rich artistic history. A descendant of one of our foremost 19th century artists Kennett Watkins, Josephines mother Lois Davis (nee Watkins) studied at the Christchurch school of art, graduating in 1947.

Josephines interest in art was fostered by her mother from an early age. In 1977 she opted to not continue formal art studies, instead to accept an opening with a Hamilton dealer gallery. She pursued a full-time career in the fine art business until 1988.

During this time, she kept up painting in her spare time and exhibited regularly with local societies and dealer galleries. In 1983 Josephine was awarded the Montana Art Award for watercolour.

Early in 1989 Josephine travelled to Europe. Initially settling in London where she undertook studies at Blake Collage, before moving to Paris for several months. In September of 1989 she returned to England to attend the Royal Watercolour Societies Summer School in Kent, where her tutors included the President and Vice President of the Society.

Returning to New Zealand, Josephine won the Prestigious Tauranga National Art Award in 1990. In 1991 the Gisborne Art Museum purchased a watercolour by Josephine for their permanent collection. Josephine has always painted under her maiden name of Davis, although married for 25 years to art dealer Grant Bezett. A successful solo exhibition was held in Auckland in 1994, just four months before the birth of their first child. Family commitments then reduced her artistic output considerably for several years. However, she did manage to keep exhibiting both watercolours and oils in galleries in New Zealand as well as in London and Paris.