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s t u d i o



arts zine issue 31 may 2019

JAMES DRINKWATER james-drinkwater

The Sea Calls me by Name, H240 x W180 cm. oil on canvas, James Drinkwater © 2018.







D R O Between Art and Death Oil on marine ply.H183 x W122cms. Sandro Nocentini Š 2019.





Portrait of Hellen Rose, Ink on paper, 124 x 94 cm. George Gittoes © 2019.


Where the Bloodwoods Weep, H61 xW46cm. Carol Gill © 2019.















Mountains, charcoal on paper, H106 x W140cm. Amy Dynan © 2019.

slp studio la primitive

Ceramic Plate - Nicola Coady, Ferry Artists Gallery, Hawkesbury, NSW.

James Drinkwater

Edmond Thommen

Lottie Consalvo

Mark Elliott-Ranken

Sandro Nocentini

Matthew Couper

Lachie Hinton

Brad Evans

Col Henry

Eric Werkhoven

Ann Sutherland


John Startin

Robyn Werkhoven

Ferry Artists Gallery

Art Systems Wickham

Victoria Peel

Dungog Contemporary

Isabella Edwards

Sculpture on the Farm

Carol Gill


Maggie Hall

Dungog by Design

INDEX Editorial …………

Robyn Werkhoven


SLP Antics………... …

E & R Werkhoven


Feature Artist ………..

James Drinkwater

12 - 23

Poetry …………………

Brad Evans

24 - 25

Feature Artist …………

Lottie Consalvo

26 - 41

Poetry …………………

Eric Werkhoven

42 - 43

Feature Artist ………...

Sandro Nocentini

44 - 59

Poetry ………………….

Eric Werkhoven

60 - 61

Feature Artist …………

Lachie Hinton

62 - 75

Feature Artist …………..

Col Henry

76 - 77

Poetry ……………….

Maggie Hall

78 - 79

Feature Artists …………… Hawkesbury Artists Poetry …………………….. Brad Evans

170 - 171

Batak Sculpture …………. Lorraine Fildes

172 - 189

ART NEWS……………….

190 - 217

Front Cover: I Tried To Hold The Horizon For You Saji on the Couch, (ink, wash, watercolour), Lachie Hinton © 2019.

80 - 169

Acrylic, H120 x W180 cm. Lottie Consalvo © 2018.

EDITORIAL Greetings to all our ARTS ZINE readers, this is one of our largest Zines we have published, containing many interesting and inspiring artists’ interviews and articles.

Lorraine Fildes, our resident travel photographer and writer, this month features Batak Sculpture, of Northern Sumatra.

The May ARTS ZINE 2019 includes features on -

Maggie Hall, artist, writer and photographer has another imaginative verse and images - The Cat Maiden.

The dynamic contemporary artists James Drinkwater and Lottie Consalvo, who are fast becoming rising stars in the art world in Australia and internationally.

Don’t miss out reading our new poetry, art news and information on forthcoming art exhibitions.

Sydney based figurative artist Sandro Nocentini writes about his work, he describes his style as ‘cubist-futurist.’ Lachie Hinton is known for his art which explores the darker side of the human condition, often in adverse conditions. The interview covers Lachie’s forthcoming exhibition , revealing the refugee crisis on Nauru.

The ARTS ZINE features articles and interviews with national and international visual artists, poets and writers, exploring their world of art and creative processes.

Submissions welcomed, we would love to have your words Art Zine presents the Hawkesbury Artists - including a tribute to ceramic artist and Director of St Albans Gallery Suzanne Startin, by her sister Newcastle artist Ann Sutherland. Followed by inspiring interviews with artists who have all had

connections or have lived in the scenic landscape of the Hawkesbury, NSW.

and art works in future editions in 2019.

Deadline for articles 15th June for July issue 31, 2019.

Email: Regards - your editor Robyn Werkhoven

The publisher will not accept responsibility or any liability for the correctness of information or opinions expressed in the publication. Copyright © 2018 Studio La Primitive.

All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced , in whole or in part, without the prior permission of the publisher. Issue 31 - May 2019




Right: An Event, aqua graphite pencil / oil pastel on paper H125 x W80 cm. Robyn Werkhoven Š 2018.

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Issue 31 - May 2019


JAMES DRINKWATER James Drinkwater born in 1983, lives and works in Newcastle NSW, Australia. An artist whose practice traverses painting, sculpture, assemblage and collage. Drinkwater makes work about place, intimacy and

memory, using abstraction, colour and mark making for transmission of these preoccupations

Drinkwater studied at the National Art School, Sydney, before moving to Melbourne and then Germany. His work is held in major public and private collections both

nationally and internationally, including the Macquarie Group




Newcastle Art Gallery, and private




collections in New

York, Singapore, Germany and the UK. In 2014 Drinkwater won the Brett Whiteley Travelling Scholarship. Page:12 Looking for Urchins and Louis Ferrari, H240 x W180 cm. oil on canvas

James Drinkwater Š 2018. Right: Arriving in the East End, H240 x W180 cm. oil on canvas, James Drinkwater Š 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


With Warm Brass the Harbour Wakes

H240 x W180 cm. Oil on canvas James Drinkwater © 2018

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The Girl Sleeps in the Doctors Clothes, So We Jubilate out in

the Rain. Oil on canvas H240 x W180cm. James Drinkwater © 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


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James Drinkwater - Interview Why do you make art? I have no choice, it's a compulsion. What's your biggest fear? That I won't be permitted the hours on this planet to execute my eternity. What does forever mean to you?

The hours in between where one loses oneself. What do you make work about? The role of painting is to express through form, colour and mark making those things that are cheapened by words. Following on from that John Olsen once said “It's not that I don't like the look of things, I just prefer the way they feel”. I paint about my life and it's contents. James James Ocean Face, H240 x W180 cm., oil on canvas, Page16: Girl with Working Harbour, Oil on Canvas, H70 x W100 cm. James Drinkwater © 2018.

James Drinkwater © 2018.

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How do you think the specifications of a studio alter your work as an artist? In some respects it doesn't matter how big the various studios I've had over the years have been. Even in a larger studio I tend to inhabit about the space of a single car garage. However all that extra space allows for

multiple projects to germinate, develop and distil at whatever pace they require.

If you could to be anywhere but here where would you be? On my way here.

Are you scared of getting old? I wasn't.

You've returned to the city of Newcastle where you grew up. There is immense history for you in the place,

how does the past re-enter into your life now? I can't imagine my practice without Newcastle and that applies whether I'm physically here or not. The great Russian Poet Anna Akhmatova wrote when talking about her affection for Mosco, 'I know only one city in the world and I can find my way around it by feel in my sleep'. This is how I feel about Newcastle. Every street holds a story that is dear to me. Issue 31 - May 2019






R Table setting for Dr Louis Ferrari, Construction painting, H70 x H90 cm., James Drinkwater © 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


How important is travel to your work? For a long time it has been a primary function for my practice. I felt like I had to go to the exotic. Now life after children I realised it doesn't really matter where I am as long as I’m available.

What forthcoming exhibitions have you in 2019 and 2020 ? I have a large survey show at the Newcastle Art Gallery from the 1st of June until the 11th of August 2019. This exhibition mines the last ten years of my practice. In September I have a solo exhibition at Sydney Contemporary with Nanda/Hobbs and in 2020 I have my first exhibition with Nicholas Thomson Gallery who now represent me in Melbourne.

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - James Drinkwater Š 2019

Issue 31 - May 2019


Wades Past the Peninsula The Bulker Wades Past the Peninsula and So We Jubilate Oil on canvas H240 x W180cm

James Drinkwater Š 2018.

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The Hospital Ship Manunda and Portrait of the Art Construction painting H110 x W85cm. James Drinkwater Š 2018.

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Photographs - Dean Beletich james-drinkwater

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs James Drinkwater Š 2019

Left: Girl in Park Under the Fort,

H240 x W180 cm., oil on can, James Drinkwater Š 2018.

Issue 31 - May 2019



this morning & this afternoon‌

in this town’s streets the somewhere echoes of a jackhammer -


Its short, punchy staccato biting off pieces of a distant, undesired concrete

and my own

tranquility. Issue 31 - May 2019


A Letter to Sophie Lancaster In 2007, 19y.o. Sophie Lancaster and her boyfriend were attacked by a group of teenagers while walking through a park in Rossendale (Lancashire). Sophie sustained severe head injuries while trying to protect her boyfriend from the thugs. She fell into a coma and died 13 days la ter. The police suspect that the motive for the murder was simply because the couple had been wearing gothic-style clothing.

Dear Sophie, I never knew you, but in your final act I now wish I had. Where did you learn the act of heroism? Back where I grew up, I was never taught it:

not at home, not at school, nor in the workplace. It must've been something that you had inside you: A real virtue. In a war, you would have been decorated for bravery, I have no doubt of that. But for some reason, people didn't realise you were in one. And it still goes on‌ - Brad Evans Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019



L O T T I E Issue 31 - May 2019


LOTTIE CONSALVO Lottie Consalvo is a Melbourne born, Newcastle based artist whose practice traverses painting, performance, video and sculpture. Her work explores psychological shifts and ideas

surrounding desire, longing and the ungraspable are present within her work. “Lottie Consalvo contemplates time. Years, nano -seconds, moments of eternity, transition, points

of no return – these moments of between and becoming are explored in abstract paintings and across mediums. Consalvo’s interdisciplinary practice includes performative and often quite specific autobiographical references.” Jo Higgins

Page 26: I thought you would never go, H70 x W83.5cm. Acrylic on board, Lottie Consalvo © 2017.

Right: In A Humming Muteness, H120 x W100cm, acrylic Lottie Consalvo © 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


I Put It Here So You Could Find It ,video still, Lottie Consalvo © 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


My Eyes Held Onto Nothingness H180 x W120cm. Acrylic Lottie Consalvo © 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


Leaving Paradise, H160 x W244cm, acrylic on board, Lottie Consalvo © 2017. Issue 31 - May 2019


LOTTIE CONSALVO - INTERVIEW What's the core theme of your work? The core of existence. The intangible. The perpetual relentlessness of our thoughts.

What's the most beautiful thing you have ever seen? The ocean. The way the waves move in slow motion.

When consumed by your concerns of painting at night, what do you see when you close your

eyes? What does that look like? Black and endless. I don't see paintings in my head anymore, I just have a feeling of what they

might be. Painting haunts me at night, in the middle of the night, I feel like I cannot paint as fast as my thoughts come to me. Sometimes it feels like I can't keep up.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Do you see the horizon as a line or the edge of land and sky? I see it as neither. It cannot be defined. It's possibly the straightest line in nature that doesn't

even exist without the human gaze.

What does scale mean to you, how do you change between the gears of small works and large works? I move seamlessly between very small and very large works. It's when I get to medium size

works that I am stumped. The gestures performed in a large work involves the entire body and I get to fall into a small work, it's intimacy.

You live in Newcastle, is your life given value by your proximity to the sea, what could its absence mean to you? The sea is mythical, this vast amount of water that we can float upon or sink right to the bottom of. I visit the sea every day and this takes me to a place far away. I cannot comprehend it's absence, I don't want to. Issue 31 - May 2019


How do you transition from LIFE to your studio each day, do you have some routine or ceremony which allows you to shake off the trivial parts of existence like returning emails or paying bills?

I walk from my home across a park to the studio, if I look to my right as I walk my eyes

can follow a horizon of sea and sky, by the time I enter the studio I've already entered

another place in my mind. If I feel intimidated by a large blank surface, I draw or make

paintings on large sheets of paper until I trust myself.

Right: The Fictitious Imagery (1)

Acrylic on board, Lottie Consalvo Š 2019. Photograph Dean Beletich.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Top: Ages and Ages 2018 Performance and painting Below: Ages and Ages, 2018, private performance, still from‌de MOMA Lottie Consalvo Š 2018.

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In Silence, H180 x W366cm, acrylic on board, Lottie Consalvo © 2017. Issue 31 - May 2019


What forthcoming exhibitions have you got coming up ?

I will be exhibiting in 2019 at: Auckland Art Fair, New Zealand in May with Dominik Mersch Gallery. From May until October I have a solo exhibition at Clayton Utz in Melbourne. Solo exhibition opening at Maitland Regional Art Gallery NSW

from the 27th of July until the 3rd of November. Solo exhibition at Dominik Mersch Gallery in Sydney opening the 15th of August until the 7th of September. Then I'm in a group show at Goulburn Regional Art Gallery later in the year.

- Lottie Consalvo Š 2019.

Page 37: If It Never Ends, acrylic on board , H100 x W120cm. Lottie Consalvo Š 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


Issue 31 - May 2019


They Hold Me And I Fall H200 x W140cm. Acrylic Lottie Consalvo © 2018.

Photograph -Dean Beletich Issue 31 - May 2019


Until My Forgetting, acrylic on board, H480 x W180cm. Lottie Consalvo © 2017. Issue 31 - May 2019


I Told Myself I Was Painting A Field Of Flowers, Acrylic on canvas, H162 x W 222cm. Lottie Consalvo © 2019.

Photograph - Dean Beletich. Issue 31 - May 2019

40 artist/lottie-consalvo/ All Rights Reserved on article and photographs Lottie Consalvo Š 2019

Right: Great Empty Memories, acrylic on board, H160 x W122 cm. Lottie Consalvo Š 2017.

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A CUP OF THE UNIVERSE Something draws too close, for you to say.

In all its many varied ways and means to get there. To stop and draw a line, where the danger would be too great to venture any further. Before this valley of mirrors, implode from its obscure centre.

Move on don’t hold us up, you are making us weary of change. Run, fly, work or write to make a worthy contribution.

Set in stone for our feet to touch the ancient world. Set in glass to see through and behold there is another you,

In whom these mirror reflections bleed profusely, into a cup of the Universe. To remind us and enforce us, not a moment too late. Set in bone and flesh and skin, to prevail over the nether world.

Set straight along these crooked lines. - Eric Werkhoven Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


























The Offering



H 69 x W30 x B20cm.

Autoclaved aerated cement / plaster. Eric Werkhoven Š 2019.

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SANDRO NOCENTINI Sandro Nocentini was born in 1966 Rome, Italy. His early artistic influences were from his artist mother, Alba Pratesi, and her mentor Aldo Bandinelli. He arrived in Australia in 1993, and graduated with a degree in Fine Arts at the National Art School. The new environment of Australia had a significant effect on his work. He staged his first solo exhibition in 1996. In 2005, Nocentini was awarded the $10,000 Sir John Sulman Prize for his painting My Son Has Two Mothers. In 2006, he was one of the contributing artists to the fund-raising Changing Nature 06 Greenpeace exhibition and auction in

Sydney. His painting of Princess Diana was included in the book, Diana in Art, compiled by Mern Mehmet (Pop Art Books), and described by the Daily Mail as "a somewhat Picasso-like view of the Princess". He describes his style as "cubist-futurist" and said of his work:

“The accurate description of physical reality is not as important to me as depicting people through their most intimate and silent moments... I paint only about feelings.” Art Critic Simonne Jameson said about Nocentini, "Even a brief sampling can suggest the quality, at once poetic, rationale of Nocentini's mind." In 2016 Nocentini published the digital version of three books for children he wrote and illustrated: The Dog With No Name, and other short tails, The Broken Mirror, and other short stories and The Christmas we Forgot. Page 44: Gossip, Oil on canvas, H81 × W105cm., Sandro Nocentini © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Sandro Nocentini in his studio. Issue 31 - May 2019


SANDRO NOCENTINI — INTERVIEW When did your artistic passion begin? One of my earliest memories is of my mother painting at the easel in her bedroom. She exhibited her work

in the 70s and mingled with other artists; art was her passion. I don’t remember her taking me out to the zoo, the circus or the Luna park… our days out were to this or that museum or visiting historical churches.

And I was very receptive to this, I loved art, the stories you can read in it, the stories you can make of it. Growing up in Rome offered so much inspiration. My art-making started as a something kids do but has

persevered and has accompanied me for most of my life, becoming something I truly loved doing, well before wanting to exhibit my work.

Describe your work -

More than a painter I prefer to call myself a Storyteller. Practicing Sculpture, Drawing and Writing, as well as painting, I enjoy telling stories, with every one of my artworks. So, my attention is never focussed on the

brushstroke, the technique, the perspective, but the story, the feeling I can infuse the picture with. Also, I intentionally refrain from placing too much detail in my images, leaving them open to interpretation. I believe

a successful artwork should be able to reflect everyone’s story in it; Art gives the opportunity to express feelings, yours and others’. Issue 31 - May 2019


Do you have a set method / routine of working? Some think art-making is a romantic activity where feelings are explored and expressed through swooping gestures, others believe art-making is as easy as sitting at the table and do it! To me art-making is a privileged and spiritual moment, but it requires discipline and commitment. I share my studio space with my partner, an Interior Designer, and his team, and I can never paint when they are there. I enjoy being alone, being able to isolate myself and need to enter an almost meditative state. When by myself, I turn the music on as soon as I enter the studio; classical music and opera are my favourite. I turn the volume up as I choose, make myself a coffee, then sit on the sofa and stare at the unfinished works around me. I truly spend more time sitting and staring than painting. Until ‘it’ hits me. I

suddenly seem to have a clear idea of what colour, brush stroke or line I need to add… and I do, and paint as long as this feeling lasts. Then I sit down again, and stare some more. At the end of a painting day I am

relaxed as well as exhausted. Art-making is for me a mental state, just like meditation, or prayer… and to achieve this state I need to be on my own, self-centred.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Why do you choose this material / medium to work with?

I have experimented using many different media, of course, I continuously do, but oil paint seems to respond well to my pace. Classically trained to paint on canvas, I have really enjoyed recently painting on board, marine plywood. It’s hard under the brush, it resists the stroke, and it also allows me to grab a cloth and easily rub the paint off. In its initial stages, painting on wood is a process I feel very similar to drawing.

Free and experimental.

Left: Boy and a Horse Oil on marine ply, H183 x W122 cm. Sandro Nocentini Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Issue 31 - May 2019


How important is drawing as an element to your artwork? Drawing is the basis of my practice, as it allows me to find the stories I’m intending to tell. However, whenever I am done with that drawing I am also done with that particular image; I am never interested in making it a painting, after. It’s done, finished. I never was a fan of reproducing, not even my own work… Why tell again the same identical story … For a painting, however, I draw on the canvas directly, exploring the story, the composition, the lines … once happy with this initial drawing, I stop and enjoy the result. It is at this stage that I always wonder if to go ahead with layers of paint or leave it as is instead… Drawing allows the creation of a unique and expressive artwork. I find that by ‘finishing’ a painting we too often stiffen the

story and lose its initial spontaneity, and that’s why there are paintings of mine that are left seemingly unfinished … these have been pushed just a little further than their initial drawing state.

What inspires your work / creations? People inspire me, their stories, my stories… I paint almost exclusively figurative subjects. Just looking at

people passing by gives me ideas, continuously. I may run out of paint, or canvas, but never of ideas.

Page 50: Born On A Moon Night, Oil on marine board, H122 x W169cm., Sandro Nocentini © 2017. Issue 31 - May 2019


First Dance Oil on canvas H76 × W76 cm. Sandro Nocentini © 2014

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What have been the major influences on your work? My mother of course, was my greatest influence, and her belief that my truest gift, and the


to manage, was to be myself. However, growing up in Italy offered my artistic

instincts a very precious span of styles to be inspired by.

Roman architecture, of course, and the Renaissance and Baroque artworks which are everywhere, freely available and up close. Artistically, nothing beats the privilege to sit in

an old church and be on your own with masterpieces of art history. However, the European Modernist style seems to have been the strongest influence in my artmaking.

The work of Modigliani, Sironi, Boccioni and many others of this period stir in me deep emotions. It’s the silence in their work, the body language, the intensity of emotions. And

I love the obsessive and continuous exploration of Picasso… so many works, so many ugly ones… it’s self-indulgent, yes, but incredibly brave.

Issue 31 - May 2019


LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL Oil on canvas H122 x W122cm. Sandro Nocentini © 2015.

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SHOW ME THE WAY Oil on marine ply H122 x W122cm. Sandro Nocentini © 2019.

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Name your greatest achievement, exhibitions? Art schooling, shows, selling, art awards… what is

the real goal for an artist? Only time can tell. At the moment I consider my greatest achievement

the ability, or presumption, of still painting for myself. It is selfish, pretentious, self-indulgent, I

know… but being myself is the only thing that distinguishes me from the many other artists out

there, and there are many of great talent. It’s a struggle, and financially not rewarding, but it’s the only way I enjoy doing it.

Left: LOVE, Oil on marine ply, H122 x W75cms., Sandro Nocentini © 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


What are you working on at present? My next series of paintings is drawing focussed, less tidy and hopefully strongly expressive and spontaneous. As a new approach I often set an alarm clock on short times to force me into outbursts of creativity; this might sacrifice the achievement of beauty in exchange for spontanei-

ty and freshness‌ I wish for a series of works rich with spontaneous storytelling, instead of neater


Left: WISDOM, Oil on marine ply, H122 x W75cm. Sandro Nocentini Š 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


Where do you see your art practice in five years time? I hope I will still be investigating, and possibly

crating artworks that are very different from what I am making now. I feel it is my duty to keep experimenting, push boundaries, and discover new ways, not only on canvas, but here too, deep inside myself. - Sandro Nocentini 2019.

Left: PRAYER, Oil on marine ply, H122 x W75 cm., Sandro Nocentini Š 2018. Page 59: The Stories Before Yours, Oil on marine ply, H122 x W169cm. Sandro Nocentini Š 2018.

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58 All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Sandro Nocentini Š 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


Tirade of the heart uncovered If I remain still the flies won’t bother me so much. Not covered in sweat, to make it worth their while. The sweet morning, earthly smells welcome us.

Between us the reign of power ebbs towards oblivion. Towards forgetting as if each isn’t worthy to be remembered. We live for today, as if it could be our last.

We are continually at odds, with our archaic beliefs, shattered about, as if we are a huge tree dropping its laden fruit. Pungent smell that attracts a multitude of insects.

Oozing out strange ambivalent feelings that we try to contain. Who has not held the silent night in out stretched hands? Upholding the universe in a mighty personal orgasm. Issue 31 - May 2019


I am told there is no need for reminiscence, it’s dangerous to remain locked in the past.

The present calls for the shots to be fired. Celebrate upon the feast, brought down from its regal heights. It’s perfectly normal, we can’t do without, and we must adhere to the prevail-

ing trends. In a mode to welcome the prodigal essence. The beating of our heart for each other, minimizing the circle of friends. So we are locked within this time zone. The liquid hours are eventually evap-

orating in the blue sky, and we remain the flies best friends on a hot and sticky walk down the street. That’s life, the alphabet of worldly wonders never cease.

Never to admit to its oblivion. - ERIC WERKHOVEN © 2019

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Issue 31 - May 2019



LIMBOLAND (2018) illuminates the realities of Australia's offshore processing system, unveiling the faces and stories of refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru.

Artist Lachie Hinton and photojournalist Mridula

Amin travel to the remote island to document the lives of people who have been indefinitely detained for

over five years, revealing the psyche of living in limbo on Nauru.

Lachie Hinton (b.1991) is an Australian figurative artist from Sydney. His work explores the fundamentals of human nature, spanning themes from human rights to sexuality. Examining the human condition, often

in adverse conditions, he characterises his subjects with an expressive interpretation of experience. Through painting, drawing and elements of photojournalism, Hinton’s stylized imagery oscillates between

crisis points and the quotidian moments of everyday life.

Mridula Amin (b.1993) is a Dhaka-born Australian Reporter and Photojournalist. Her work focuses on investigative reportage covering global crisis, migration and identity.She graduated with a Bachelors of Me-

dia and Bachelors of Law (BA-Media/L.L.B) from Macquarie University, Sydney in 2018. She was admitted to the Supreme Court of New South Wales as a Lawyer in 2018 and has completed photojournalism pro-

jects in Myanmar, Bangladesh, India and the US.

Page 62: Dilapidated phosphate cantilever at Yangor, Nauru (35mm colour infrared photograph) Lachie Hinton Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Burnt-out car at Buada, Nauru (35mm colour infrared photograph) Lachie Hinton Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Road to the Refugee Processing Centres at Topside, Nauru (35mm colour infrared photograph) Lachie Hinton Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019 65 Issue 31 - May 2019 61

Portrait of Abdullah on Nauru Oil and charcoal on canvas H167 x W132 cm. Lachie Hinton Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


LIMBOLAND Lachie Hinton Lachie Hinton’s work has largely been inspired by storytelling on human rights issues from North Korea to

refugee camps across Europe. His new body of work LIMBOLAND delves into the dark corners of displacement and immigration surrounding Australia’s offshore detention polices. In September of 2018,

Hinton travelled to the remote island of Nauru, where Australia has forcibly detained hundreds of men, women and children refugees and asylum seekers attempting to reach its shores by boat. With foreign

media virtually banned from entering Nauru, Hinton managed an inconspicuous week-long trip to the world’s smallest island nation, documenting the lives of refugees and asylum seekers who have been indefinitely detained for over five years. His art sought to reveal the faces and stories of people kept under the extreme secrecy of Australia’s offshore detention regime.

Given the politically secretive and tyrannical nature offshore detention on Nauru, Hinton’s project was carried out covertly on the island. Roaming the airport-sized country, who’s circumference could be driven around in less than half an hour, he spent time with 15 refugees and asylum seekers living in detention camps. He described the operation as a daunting and perilous course.

Issue 31 - May 2019


“It seemed like the riskiest project I’ve done, and that’s a fairly big statement if you consider that I’ve

previously entered North Korea using the guise of tourism to document the woeful state of humanity under the Kim dynasty. Maybe it’s because in North Korea I was forced to follow a regimented schedule under

ever-watchful guides, honing my smile-and-nod response to a nauseating degree. In Nauru, it also felt like I was at the centre of something that no one was supposed to see the reality of, except where everyone was

at breaking point and every interaction required precise sensitivity as to not blow it all up.”

Hinton interviewed refugees and asylum seekers mainly from Iraq, Iran and Sri Lanka on Nauru, capturing stories and experiences of people who spoke out for the first time about life in indefinite detention. The

process involved using encoded messaging services to contract detainees, arranging for a place to meet far enough away from security guards at camp entrances and then driving back to a private house on the island.

“All of the refugees were extraordinarily unhappy and defeated”, he stated about his interactions with those who agreed to meet him. “Some had self-harmed and experienced sexual and physical assault on Nauru.

One refugee nicknamed “Saji”, an 8-year-old Tamil from Sri Lanka, had cut her arm from the mental trauma of five years of detention. While filming an interview with her she talked openly about wanting to kill herself, should she find a knife.”

Issue 31 - May 2019


Portrait of "Saji" on Nauru, Oil and charcoal on canvas, H132 x W107 cm . Issue 31 - May 2019


Hinton recorded stories and filmed interviews for his documentary LIMBOLAND (2018), creating sketches

and photographing his subjects throughout the process. He also engaged in a collaborative art-making piece where refugees and asylum seekers drew and wrote messages about Nauru on a length of canvas,

which forms part of a mixed media artwork. Documenting the barely visited Nauruan environment, Hinton used 35mm black and white and colour infrared film to photograph refugees around the remote island.

He employed the psychedelic colour shift of expired Kodak Aerochrome 1443 III film as a way to explore the concept of living in limbo.

"I used colour infrared film to render Nauru as a strange and nightmarish environment, which disconnected

it from a sense of reality. The idea was to reflect the same disjuncture of refugees and asylum seekers who were badly traumatised, absent-minded and withdrawn from their external realities. Indefinite detention on Nauru had eaten away at their mental state and ability to recall past memories, giving their idle existence an otherworldly nature."

Using fieldwork photographs and sketches, Hinton has created a series of large oil and mixed media

portraits of refugees and asylum seekers who he met on Nauru. The images attempt to capture the damaging experience of living indefinitely in limbo. All of the subjects of his works experienced mental, physiological or physical trauma from their time on Nauru, including a child as young as eight bearing scars of self-harm and dreaming of suicide. Issue 31 - May 2019


“Given the media blackout on Nauru, it was hard to know what to expect arriving on the island, but whatever that was, it was far worse. It wasn’t just the fact that in the midst of a mental health crisis every refugee and asylum seeker I met was painfully traumatized with urgent medical needs, but that Nauru was the most broken and wretched place I have

ever been.”

Right: Portrait of Abdullah

Ink, oil pastel and watercolour on paper, H42 x W30 cm. Lachie Hinton © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Left: Portrait of "Saji" at the beach at Yaren, Nauru.

Right: Portrait of "Saji" on the couch. Lachie Hinton © 2019.

Page 73: "Saji" on the Couch, solarplate etching, gouache, ink, wash and wash on paper, H35 x W50 cm. Lachie Hinton © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Issue 31 - May 2019


Photographing refugees around the island, Hinton captured the strange and desolated environment that once made Nauru the second richest country per capita in the world. A defining feature of the tiny Pacific

outcrop’s environment is its moonlike fields of phosphate or fossilized bird shit, also known as “Guano”, which was lucratively exported as fertilizer until the resource ran out and the country went bankrupt in the

early 2000s. The abandoned phosphate mines and formed an otherworldly backdrop to sweltering refugee camps, which could only be accessed by dicey roads flanked by towers of rusting vehicles, decrepit

industry and rubbish. “What at first appeared to be a palm-protruding, tropical paradise, Nauru became much more discomforting

after a journey to the Refugee Processing Centres (RPC’s)”, Hinton said as he described the environment. “Hidden within a maze of pot-hole ridden, dirt roads dissecting the phosphate mines of Topside were three RPC’s. To reach the camps, refugees swerved their motorbikes along the hazardous route, dangerously competing for space with trucks. Sweating in the hellish heat, I tried to remain discreet as I inched past the guarded camps, which were undoubtedly in the hottest part of the island. It was harsh environment to be in, let alone live in, home to children who played among the dirt and carcinogenic phosphate dust.”

- Lachie Hinton © 2019

Page 75: Portrait of Negar on Nauru, Oil and charcoal on canvas, H167 x W112 cm . Lachie Hinton © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


An exhibition of Hinton’s work from Nauru, includ-

ing photography by photojournalist Mridula Amin who accompanied him on the trip will be held on May 16th at COMMUNE, Waterloo June 15th – July 7th at Basil Sellers Exhibition. Centre in Moyura, NSW.

The exhibitions will feature paintings, drawings,






accounts from his time documenting Nauru.

A live screening of LIMBOLAND will be shown as

part of the exhibit. All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Lachie Hinton © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


















M TURTLE DREAM - Col Henry © 2019. Image by Nathan Cook and Prof Adam Smith Reef Ecologic Issue 31 - May 2019


'TURTLE DREAM’ - COL HENRY In December 2018 Arts Zine’s Special Issue, featured sculptor Col Henry’s work in progress ‘Turtle Dream’

on page 58

view the amazing completed sculpture.

The name, goes back 40 years when my young family spent many sailing holidays in the Whitsundays, and we used to dive near Bali Hai ( now know as Black Island ) and there were many turtles that seemed to sleep on the bottom. They were dreaming of their idyllic lifestyle, and I have dreamed about them ever since. My Turtle Dream. This is information and a short video of my most recent commission, a sculpture of an endangered species, the Hawksbill

Sea Turtle, which is 6.5 m x 6 m and 3 m high. It is made from over 800 separate hand formed sections, mostly 3 mm thick stainless steel.

The work is temporarily on view at the Bowen Information Centre, QLD., for 6 to 8 weeks, and then it will be installed 7 meters underwater at Langford Reef, just south of Hayman Island, in the Whitsundays, Queensland, Australia. The work is about sustainability, being part of a restoration / educational project to help recovery of the reef in the Whitsunday area. It is expected that the work will be seeded with coral and other marine flora and become a ‘Living Entity’

and safe habitat for marine species. This short video shows my work and some other sculptures included in the project All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Col Henry © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


The Cat Maiden Maggie Hall

The gods were debating whether it was possible for an animal to change its very nature . . . Jupiter, god of sky and thunder, brother to Neptune and Pluto, agreed, and in challenge, Venus, goddess of victory and fertility, lover of Vulcan and Mars, said "this cannot be" . . .

and so to the challenge; Jupiter turns a Cat into a Maiden and gives to her a young man. A ceremony was arranged and dutifully performed, and so the newly fasted couple sit down to their feast.

Issue 31 - May 2019


"See," said Jupiter, to Venus, "observe how

her nature has changed. Who could tell that yesterday she was a Cat? " "Wait a minute," replied Venus, and with a breath of her lips releases a mouse into the hall. It only took a moment before the cat maiden

caught sight, jumping out of her seat she prepares to pounce . . . "Ah, you see," said Venus, “the law of nature has triumphed over the nurture of hand".

All Rights Reserved on poem and photographs - Maggie Hall Š 2019

Issue 31 - May 2019


HAWKESBURY ARTISTS Emerging Mangroves, mixed media,46x46cm Carol Gill © 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019





Art Zine presents the Hawkesbury Artists - including a tribute to ceramic artist and Director of St Albans Gallery Suzanne Startin, by her sister Newcastle artist Ann Sutherland. Followed by inspiring interviews with artists who have all had connections or have lived in the scenic landscape Casual and Crown, 2019, porcelain, Isabella Edwards © 2019.

of the Hawkesbury, NSW. Issue 31 - May 2019



TRIBUTE - Ann Sutherland Issue 31 - May 2019


SUZIE STARTIN - TRIBUTE Suzanne Startin trained as an art teacher in Newcastle,

NSW. Teaching for four years before completing the ceramics certificate and post-certifcate courses at East

Sydney Technical College from 1977-79. She shared a studio with Rod Bamford in Ultimo, then in 1981 set up the Down the Lane Potter's Workshop in Forest Lodge with Gwen Whitie, Terry Wright and Barry Blight. In 1982, she became one of the founding members of the Inner City Clayworkers' Gallery in Glebe. In 1983, she moved to St Albans and set up the Wallambine Pottery. From 1996-2007, she directed the St Albans Gallery, showcasing the work of local and

regional artists. A retrospective exhibition of her work held there in December 2006 (Journal of


Ceramics, 46/2, 2007, 11-13) celebrated a career spanning three decades as a ceramic artist . Page 82: Ceramic sculpture by Suzanne Startin.

Suzanne Startin in her studio. Issue 31 - May 2019


St Albans Gallery Issue 31 - May 2019


SUZIE STARTIN - TRIBUTE Ann Sutherland. Suzie as she was affectionately known was an Artist, Gallerist, Teacher and valued community leader. Below the church of St Albans in Wharf St behind the historical Settlers Arms, a verandah circled house set among native shrubs declares its beginnings in the faded sign of St Albans Gallery. Opened in 1996 and closed in 2009 the gallery was a cultural hub for the MacDonald valley. St Albans Gallery was the creation of Suzie Startin and under her imaginative guidance the gallery became an exciting stimulus for the creative talents of artists, craftspeople, poets, musicians and art lovers. The openings at St Albans Gallery were a cultural and social event and often extended well into the early hours. “my passion has been to show the breadth of richness of artists in this region. In

travelling to towns I would sometimes be left with the thought ‘where are the quality artworks from this place and why aren’t they being shown’ ” Suzie was drawn to art as a child growing in Willina up on an isolated farm on the edge of Wang Wauk forest. Her mother Joy was a creative dressmaker and inspired her as a child. Her first dance dress made by her mother was a remake of pale mauve water wave taffeta. She recalled her ongoing love of textiles developed from this time playing with beautiful scraps of fabric and thread. Her father Tony also inspired her

with his hidden talents showing her how to chip carve, make macramé and knit. Issue 31 - May 2019


Issue 31 - May 2019


Art became her favourite subject in high school and the art room became a refuge on those dreaded sports periods. She trained as an art teacher at Newcastle Teachers College. The Art section where she did the practical training to teach was located at the now Hunter St Art School. It was there in the late 60s she

found her home. She was mixing with a wide range of people. Lecturers such as John Montefiore had a great influence on her. It was an open bohemian life and creatively very stimulating. She went on to

complete a Honours year at the art school. Suzie was a feminist with a quiet strong sense of justice and it was displayed when she and fellow students

fought for the right to wear trousers to college. The college principal had strict rules for female students. Suzie reasoned it was impractical for art students to have to change when they headed down the road to

engage in Art classes. Her innate love of nature was no doubt instilled growing up on a farm. Nature was a strong force surround-

ing her as a child from floods to drought and bushfire. Watching baby pigs and calves being born, roaming the bush, paddling in creeks, catching tadpoles and playing with raw clay on the edge of the dam was little

Suzie’s childhood. Inspiration for many of Suzie’s art work focused on sensual themes, the female form and goddesses and

the natural world.

She explored the patterns of nature and reproduction. Paintings, drawings, weavings,

pottery, batik and photography explored the perfection of nature in its symmetry and drew on the life forces of nature. As an artist Suzie connected with the land. Page 86: Suzanne Startin in her home. Photograph curtesy of Ann Sutherland. Issue 31 - May 2019


The Womb, acrylic on canvas, Suzanne Startin.

Portrait study of Suzanne Startin in the 70’s. Issue 31 - May 2019


From drawings of cross sections of flower stamens she painted WOMB a large and colourful acrylic 1metre

square textured painting on Masonite which exudes the strength and power of natures reproductive structures. Her early works combined clay and weaving together and hand built sculptural hand built clay works which were often unglazed and decorated with slip designs. Suzie’s love of indigenous cultures and their

connection with mother earth was a great source of inspiration to her. She first taught in Temora, a world away from the 60s in Newcastle and later taught in Sydney at Kogarah High and Penrith High. She developed a love for her students even though some of them made teaching a hard time for her. Throughout her life she maintained a nurturing and caring of the children in her life and

loved helping visiting nieces and nephews and friends children to make clay models. In 1974 Suzie set of for Europe. She got as far as Roti Island Indonesia and entranced by the people and

culture she stayed there for a year. Indonesia crystallised her ambition to focus on pottery and deepened her love of textiles. She engaged in weaving and batik whilst there and made pottery. Her life was deeply

influenced by her experience of living there. Back in Sydney Suzie got serious about pottery and enrolled in the National Art School Ceramics Certifi-

cate. She shared a pottery workshop in a burned out church named aptly St Albans The Martyr. She next moved to Down the Lane Potters in Forest Lodge and with Terry Wright , Gwen Whitey and Barry Blight she

became one of the founding members of the Inner City Clay works a co operative ceramic gallery .. Issue 31 - May 2019


Bronze sculpture, Suzanne Startin 70’s. Issue 31 - May 2019


After completing the ceramics course and developing skills on the wheel and glazing techniques. Her lec-

turers included Grahame Oldroyd, Gillian Grigg, Diogenes Farri, Bill Samuels, Steve Harrison. In her Post Graduate year her main lecturer was John Eady. These ceramic teachers had a profound influence on her

skills as a potter. Now skilled at wheel produced ware she began producing functional wares to sell. She developed her signature designs and glazes. Suzie met her future husband Gil Jones at Balmain markets

and they moved to live in the country in 1983 with plans of creating The Wallambine Pottery just outside of at St Albans. In the space of 2 years they went from a tent to a 1 room cottage to a combined pottery studio and home built by themselves. Kilns were built and firings were exciting events over the next decade. Suzie was back in the bush surrounded by nature. Wallambine pottery was born and Suzie’s designs of lizards bottlebrush, lyrebirds and patterns made their way onto multi glazed and decorated bowls and platters and sculptural pieces that were destined for Sydney and further afield for sale.

In 1994 Suzie and Gil bought a block of land in the village of St Albans to build a gallery to sell her pottery ware and to interact with the public. She didn’t limit herself to that. She wanted to collect, exhibit and sell other artists works as well.

‘besides a passion for working with clay, my lifelong interest in the whole spectrum of art also motivated me to pursue the dream of running a gallery’

Issue 31 - May 2019


A selection of earlier ceramic works by Suzanne Startin.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Throughout her life Suzie was a nurturing and caring friend and a strong advocate for other artists.

St Albans Gallery focused on the work of all mediums of local and regional artists. Wood shows featured tables and chairs and carvings. Some made from recycled bridge timbers. Her brother John, alias wombat

man, also contributed works with his native animal wood carvings. Suzie encouraged local emerging artists like Angela Slattery, Gael Dunshea, Karla Dickens and exhibited established artists such as Victoria Peel,

Heidi Saxby, Enid Coloquhoun, Edna Mariong Watson and Carolyn Clarke in solo exhibitions. Her strong interest in indigenous art led to exhibitions by aboriginal artists from the Hawkesbury with entrancing moments of didgeridoo, dance and song. Local Cole Lyons was often called upon to perform welcome to country at exhibitions at the gallery. St Albans gallery reputation grew as it became a vibrant place for art and a gathering place for locals and visitors alike.

“Being a part of nurturing their artistic journeys gives real pleasure. Group exhibitions such as the Wood show and Women Artists of St Albans pose a different challenge as they involve bringing together very diverse works but slowly a coherent feeling emerges. I love to see the gallery take on a different persona with each new exhibition.””

Issue 31 - May 2019


Interior view St Albans Gallery.

Issue 31 - May 2019


The Turning of the Wheel Exhibition at St Albans Gallery in 2009 heralded the closure of the gallery after 14

years. Suzie returned to teaching, this time with Primary students at the historic MacDonald school. Seeing and encouraging their fresh response to and enthusiasm for art was very rewarding for her and as usual

she threw herself into the school activities including the 170 th Anniversary of the school.. She was well known in the valley for motivating and helping organise community events such as the Folk Festival. Suzie

was honoured with the Community Arts Award presented by the Hawkesbury City Council in 2007 and her Gallery history will be archived in Hawkesbury Public Library in the near future.

Suzie’s life and career devoted to the arts is exemplifies in many articles and reviews of her works in published journals such Pottery in Australia. Her pottery has been exhibited in group and solo exhibitions, including a Retrospective solo at St Albans gallery. Suzie went on to nurture and guide many budding artists many of whom will always cherish her mentorship and friendship.

Sisters Ann and Vicki are planning a planning a fundraiser exhibition for Leukaemia and the palliative care

unit at Mt Druitt. This will be held at St Albans at the historic courthouse in November in memory of Suzie. Artists who would like to know more about this event and would like to donate either a piece of art work for

sale or a percentage of the sale of a piece of art work please email Ann

Sutherland at - All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Ann Sutherland Š 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019



My name is Ghassem, locally known as Gus. I was born in Iran, and sought Asylum in Australia in the mid 80’s. After retiring from work, I

moved to St Albans over six years ago where I currently live with my three German shepherd dogs namely Honey, Fidel (after Fidel Castro) and Buddha. Shortly after arriving here through a friend, I met Suzie Startin and it did not take long at all for me to know what a special woman she was.

She was well known in the area and much loved by everyone perhaps for different reasons. But for me personally, it was an honor and a great pleasure to meet Suzie. A person who in my opinion never gave up, bringing beauty, love, and justice for all in the world. As a former refugee, her Activism resonated with me most. Her recent passing was a great loss to her friends, family and the community. But for me personally, it was not only the loss of a dear

friend, but also the loss of a good model of a human being. The only way that I was able to honor her was through the language of poetry, which is the expressions of deeper feelings. The first expression was a poem I wrote for her that I read at her funeral called “Broken ring, eternal love and last words”, which is as

follows. Ghassem, photograph curtesy of poet. Issue 31 - May 2019


Broken Ring, Eternal Love and The Last Words

It ended the way I thought it would. You suddenly left. Bang, gone. But where to? I don’t know!

But I know I feel numb. I feel empty. I feel all alone. But in a strange way, I feel I have found myself with the Love you showed me.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Will you help me with this question? How can you not be? I know that you have joined the ocean of consciousness, and one day I will be able to swim in your waters. The day I came to farewell you, as you were waiting for your train to arrive, to take you to the underworld. I sat next to you. Held your hand.

Kissed your feet. And opened my heart and soul. And together, as no one was watching, “We danced to the end of love.� Those days and what they held, are now long gone, they are only a part of my garden of memories.

Issue 31 - May 2019


I will keep the broken ring you gave me, with the picture of a deer, who only wants to be free. And I treasure the eternal love I found with you.

The train you were waiting for, has come and long gone. And I can’t “Dance to the end of Love” on the platform with you anymore. But I still can sing the blues in your memories. I always loved you! And I always will, Suzie. Farewell my dear friend.

Farewell. I will be looking for you on the other side when I die.

- Ghassem © 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


This poem was essentially about my relationship with Suzie. But after her death, I realised that I had to write a second

poem about what happened to her and where has she gone, which is called “I used to be Suzie”. What inspired me to write the second poem was the day after Suzie’s funeral, I went to St Albans cemetery where Suzie was buried the day before. I wanted to be with her once again alone and read her one of Rumi’s poems about Longing. A longing that can never be comprehended, accepted or absorbed. It did not matter how hard I focused, meditated and tried to connect and feel her. I couldn’t. She simply was not there. It

was then that I realized that I was looking at the wrong place. And it was then that I realised that I needed to do a “soul-search”

This second poem which was my farewell poem for Eternal Suzie, is the pursuit of that soul-search called “I used to be Suzie” which is as follows -

I used to be Suzie Look not for what I once was, you can't see me anymore, I have become ethereal. I am not space and time bound.

I left my body at last and I have become eternal. I used to be Suzie but not anymore.

Issue 31 - May 2019


If you really want to know where I am or what I am, I am what makes everything that is beautiful I am what makes love so delicious I am what makes sun it's light, it's warmth and life I am what makes the moon so peaceful, elegant and soothing to watch I am not the wind, but what moves it

I am what makes oceans blue And I am what tells DNA what to do I am everything and I am everywhere I am the quantum soup I am everything that has been and everything that will be

I am the past and the future I am also the stuff that makes the present moment.

Issue 31 - May 2019


I am not Suzie anymore If looked carefully, I am the cry of a child longing for her mother's gentle touches and love I am also the woman who graduated and blossoms to motherhood Not only to her child but to the world Now that I don't have the burden of a body, religion, race or even a country and culture

I can be a Yemeni starving child My eyes not blue like Pauline's, but our blood both red, and our lives both precious Sadly, mine is being so cheap Mine for quick sale for almost nothing, on the city streets My eyes black, the telescope of a dying child, locked in a gaze of disbelief of the evils of this world that doesn’t want to notice my suffering that I can only express with my desperate gaze.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Trying to understand how could this be real I pray that I am dreaming and soon I wake up

Yes, I was Suzie once But that is now just your memories I used to be Suzie Startin But now Suzie is just starting Hi, pleased to meet you, I used to be Suzie

The nightmares and illusions of life are now over God has become totally naked before my eyes, game over, can’t lie anymore Breathing the truth, oxygen not needed Yes, I used to be Suzie but now I am the world. “The divine matrix”

On behalf of all refugees in Australia, I would like to say Thank You. We’ll never forget you. You left your mark on our hearts and in the world

- Ghassem © 2019.

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Ghassem © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019



Wood Carver

Issue 31 - May 2019


John Startin John is a master of his craft and his skilfully carved works are a delight to behold and now

sold internationally through galleries.

Visit his workshop in Coolongolook by appointment - (02) 4997 7553

Mobile: 0401400564

Page 104: John carving Possum Goanna and Wombat looking in Nest from Houn Pine.

Right: The finished carved sculpture, John Startin.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Love Doves, carved Red Cedar wood, John Startin.

Kookaburra, carved from a fence post, John Startin. Issue 31 - May 2019


JOHN STARTIN Woodcarver Ann Sutherland ‘I always said I would like to do woodwork and when dad died his lathe was passed onto me. My sister Suzie said to me can you carve a wombat. I said No. She was running St Albans Gallery at that time and wanted some wood carvings. Suzie brought a carved wombat from the Philippines she had borrowed from a friend and showed me. I had a go and once I made one I didn’t stop. The main reason I started carving Australian animals was because of Suzie asking me to carve a wombat. There were a lot of wombats at St Albans. Suzie saw I had an eye for carving and encouraged me. She sold many of my wombats at her gallery at St Alban.s.’

I grew up on a dairy farm at Willina on the edge of Wang Wauk forest with my sister Suzie, Lyn, Ann and

Vicki. We were isolated and had to ride bicycles for many miles on a dirt road to go to a one teacher school. All of us had to board away from home when we reached high school. I was a quiet boy the eldest in my

family. In grade six I had to board with relatives in Taree and then in high school I had to board at Buladelah. My best classes at high school were woodwork and metalworking. I missed my family and the farm so I left

school at fifteen and helped dad on the farm. I loved playing football as a young man and learned the bagpipes as well. Issue 31 - May 2019


Wombat and Goanna. Startin cut the red cedar for this sculpture on

A glimpse of John Startin’s studio.

his farm at Willina. Whilst working in the bush cutting sleepers goannas often visited the camp site, sometimes stealing their lunches.

Big Wombat and her Babies, camphor laurel, dead finish timber, John Startin.

Big wombat is a Redgum burl, John Startin. Issue 31 - May 2019


From an early age I became handy with an axe and dad taught me to use a rifle at age eleven. At the age

of twelve I put an axe through my foot when I went cutting saplings in the wet. I guess I had to learn the hard way. When dad had to stop dairying because of the bulk pick up quota he went back to cutting

sleepers in the bush to support his family. I went with him and at the age of sixteen, I had a ticket for cutting rail sleepers.

I worked with dad in the bush for ten years.

I had a run in with a broad axe at the age of seventeen, nearly severing my tendons. This was another

incident that taught me respect for a sharp axe. Those years in the bush taught me so much about timber. I got to know timber like second nature. We would string line sleepers and mark nine inches. Then we would

chop with an axe or chainsaw to make the set sleeper size. We used all hard woods, grey mahogany and iron barks. Dad and I were good friends and had shared interests. He taught me a lot.

Becoming one of Australia’s top woodchoppers was a great achievement for me. I became addicted and

made up for lost time travelling all over Australia to country shows, one of them at St Albans where I have my name on the wall of the historical St Albans pub. My handicap was fifty five seconds and I won Axe man

of the year for five years in a row. That often meant the other choppers had turned before I could start swinging my axe.

Issue 31 - May 2019


I competed at Sydney Royal Easter show for many years and travelled to New Zealand on the NSW team.

I loved those years and with my wife Debbie and kids we spent a lot of time travelling to events. Many hours were spent polishing that axe blade to razor sharp. Debbie has been a strong proud supporter of my wood chopping and wood carving and only my mother rivaled her in her pride in my artistic achievements. When I inherited my father’s Technie tool lathe timber suddenly took on a new direction for me. Rough burls

of timber could be turned into beautiful bowls and old fence posts became wooden vases. All those years of working intimately with timber transformed into making art works. I knew my timber and what lay underneath that rough bark exterior. I saw other people using small chainsaws to carve Australian animals at shows. This interested me and I started using my chainsaw skills to transform pieces of timber into Australian animals. My family were surprised at my hidden artistic talent. I had no training in Art but I discovered I had a good eye for 3D work. I think I surprised myself too. Then my sister Sue asked me if I could carve a wombat for her Gallery at St Albans. I won Taree Art Gallery sculpture Prize for five years in a row. My mother was my biggest fan. Sometimes I have an interesting piece of timber that I look at from all angles for some time until I can visualize the forms I want to carve. It just happens when the idea is right. One of my sculpture winners was “Old Man Dreaming,� made from a piece of Rosewood from the Comboyne Mountains. My sister Lynnie sent me photos of elders in an aboriginal community where she and her husband Gordon worked and one of them

became my inspiration for the face in this work . Issue 31 - May 2019


Any timber really can be used. Some of my

favourites are Camphour Laurel, Rosewood, Cedar, Red Gum and Coolabah. I recycle timber into

carvings. Recently I found a piece of Mexican Pine my Uncle Tom gave me years ago. It is a beautiful timber and hadn’t deteriorated from being kept so long. It has a unique scent. A lot of timbers have their own scent.

My work ranges from small hand size wombats to larger pieces. I have made thousands of wombats from small to large and have outlets in Leura and The Rocks. With larger pieces I use my chainsaw to cut the basic shape and then use chisels and hand carve for details. For a smaller carvings I use a band saw and a grinder and sander to shape. The natural

features of the timber such as knot holes and beautiful grains for features on my sculptures.

I finish my work with a lacquer Mirrortone. Parrots - carved from white Beech wood. Issue 31 - May 2019


Working with timber from a young age it has become

second nature for me. I like to finish my sculptures off with the finer details and each little wombat from my

workshop is like a family, with its own personality. Many of my Australian animals have travelled to new homes


I was a late bloomer as a wood carver and artist but years of being around timber in the bush led me to my

passion for carving Australian animals. The encouragement of my sister Suzie and family certainly put me on a creative path. Working in the bush with my father instilled a love of nature in me. I love timber and its hidden potential for a beautiful form when carved and polished to reveal its unique grain.

John Startin Š 2019.

Kookaburras in progress in the studio. Issue 31 - May 2019


Dolphin with Baby, Rose Wood, won 1st prize in sculpture section at Taree Art Prize, John Startin.

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - John Startin © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019







S T S Issue 31 - May 2019


Ferry Artists Gallery Wisemans Ferry , The Hawkesbury The Ferry Artists Gallery is located in the historic village of Wisemans Ferry on the banks of the beautiful Hawkesbury River. This not for profit community gallery which started close to 20 years ago, was willed into being by renown local artist Heather Winch, who chaired the committee for many years. The mission of the Ferry Artists is to encourage developing artists of the Forgotten Valley and enhance and provide a local venue for established, as well as emerging artists in the region. The Ferry Artists Gallery, which is run by members who volunteer their time, is unique in that is the only gallery in this isolated region and straddles an area that has 4 different municipalities. The region provides tourism focussed on river activities, bushwalking, cycling and horse endurance riding.

The Gallery is

located in the Wisemans Ferry Village but the artists and artisans that contribute to this space are found within the folds and bends of the rivers and hills of the region and further afield.

Page 114: The Afternoon slipped Away, painting by Mellissa Read-Devine. Issue 31 - May 2019


Ceramics by Nicola Coady Sulphur Crested Portrait by Luke Kelly Issue 31 - May 2019


Jewellery by Rachelle Juter

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Textiles by Barbara Schey

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Eucalyptus #1 46 x 46cm Carol Gill Issue 31 - May 2019


The Ferry Artists are a proud group who showcase their work by holding regular exhibitions during the year

and the Gallery is open 6 days 10am to 4pm. You will find paintings, ceramics, jewellery, glass work, metal and timber sculptures, screen printed fabrics and silk textiles.

Members regularly demonstrate their art

whilst on duty in the gallery. The exhibition openings are a great celebration of their talents and many members are well known. You will usually see the work of Mellissa Read-Devine, Nicola Coady, Rachelle

Juter and Barbara Schey, with work by local artists Luke Kelly and Carol Gill who feature regularly. You just have to wander into the gallery to experience the quality that it brings to Wisemans Ferry.

The Ferry Artists welcome submissions for Membership from practising artists and artisans and also

applications for Social Membership. Membership requires one day duty in the gallery, per month. Donations and sponsorship to assist with this the running of this community gallery is also welcomed.

Any enquiries can be made through our website or email Otherwise take the time to visit us in the gallery soon at Shop 1&2 5557 Old Northern Road, Wisemans Ferry, NSW 2775. Phone: 02 45664385 Open 10 am to 4pm Closed Tuesday.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Art Glass by Kit Ferry.

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Ferry Artist Gallery © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


VICTORIA PEEL Issue 31 - May 2019


VICTORIA PEEL My work was initially based on the experience of feeling at home (in St Albans) and my love of the area, investigating its history, community and... in time, I began exploring the night light of both the rural and the urban landscape.

Over the years, Victoria has divided her painting time as much as possible between Sydney and St Albans, where she likes to work with a view towards the escarpment overlooking the MacDonald River, in the Hawkesbury River Area. The Hawkesbury area provides constant inspiration, with its picturesque landscapes and bold escarpment, for her

somewhat impressionist influenced paintings that render both natural and artificial light. For her 2018 Solo exhibition, Victoria returned to St Albans, capturing the incredible light across the Hawkesbury escarpment.

Victoria Peel has had over fifteen solo exhibitions in Australia as well as curated group exhibitions in Australia, USA, UK, and China. Her work has been hung twice in the Salon Des Refuses, Wynne Prize Exhibition at the S.H. Irwin Gallery.

Page 122: The Promise of Spring, Oil on canvas, H50 x W 40 cm. Victoria Peel Š 2018. Issue 31 - May 2019


Autumn Shadows Oil on canvas H50 x W40cm.

2018 © Victoria Peel.

Issue 31 - May 2019



I was born in Sydney with a childhood spent in Australia, the UK and USA as my father was in the Royal Australian Navy. A love of visual arts has always been in

my family – my father sketched in his journals at sea, even during WWII spent in the Pacific, his father painted water colour landscapes in India decades earlier when he was a surveyor at end of the 19th century.

My father has always

encouraged my art.

My first serious step towards becoming an artist was in London studying at the Byam Shaw School of Art and exhibiting my work in group shows at the Mall Galleries and the Royal Society of British Artists before returning to Sydney when I resumed my

studies at East Sydney Technical College (now the National Art

School) and the City Arts Institute (now the Art & Design UNSW). This led to a life of art and teaching at the National Art School and the Art & Design UNSW.

Issue 31 - May 2019


My true passion for art was sparked after seeing three major exhibitions at the Royal Academy in London –

each one displaying brilliant use of colour: 16th century Persian miniatures; a retrospective of J M W Turner’s (1175-1851) paintings and his powerful depictions of the sun; and Samuel Palmer’s (1805-1881)

visionary, romantic depictions of nature. I’m particularly interested in the way the Persian miniatures managed to create a unity between the contrasts of manmade geometric forms and the organic rhythms of

nature. Added to this, I realise that I am naturally drawn to colour specially to create light, so masterfully executed by Turner. Here are examples:

Left: Persian Miniature for similar examples of Persian miniatures wiki/Persian_miniature

Right: ‘Snow Storm’ J. M. W. Turner Oil on Canvas H91.5 x W122 cm.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Margaret Preston and Anne Judell have also inspired my art, along with Edward Hopper, James Whistler

and Giorgi Morandi.

2 Bernard Dunston R.A., Painting Methods of the Impressionists, Watson-Guptill, New York (1983:28) 3 C. Harrison, E. E. Barker, W. Vaughan, Samuel Palmer (1805-1881) Vision and Landscape, British Museum Press, London (2007:10 & 89)

Issue 31 - May 2019


Petrol Station in the Desert, oil pastel/ wax on paper, 2014 ©Victoria Peel, Courtesy Artsite Galleries, Sydney, NSW Issue 31 - May 2019


My work explores notions of mystery, the spirit of place and how light transforms the scene. I have always been interested in space, light and colour (predominantly using pastels or oil paint) to explore natural and artificial light with a focus on nocturnal light. The night, when forms are hidden, transforms the commonplace, and enables me to emphasize and invent passages of light and shadow. It is the mystery held within the night that stimulates my imagination.

Light for me is a metaphor for the spirit - it energizes and inspires my work. In my exhibition “Night Spaces� (2014) I explored the night light of rural and urban landscapes: reference - page 122.

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Through my art I want to engage the viewer to feel something – I seek to paint the spirit of place – catching

its rhythm of energy and light. When possible, I am most inspired when painting en plein air in a beautiful environment, especially St Albans in the Macdonald Valley.

This was where I met Suzie Startin, a talented potter with a passion for art who set up the St Albans Gallery

with her partner Gil Jones in the mid 1990s. The Gallery was a vibrant focal point for artists and their work in the valley and hosted five solo exhibitions of my work.

Sadly, the Gallery closed in 2009, but Suzie

continued to encourage artists, making the gallery her home (until her recent death), and for the last two years I had the opportunity to be her neighbour, working from the deck of an old home, looking down to the

village, and across the Macdonald River to the rising sandstone escarpment beyond. This location is the source of much inspiration for my art, en plein air but within the shade of the verandah and close to a cup of coffee and a fan on those hot days! At that time, I could not walk because I had Ross River fever and could only imagine the terrain of the escarpment through my art.

My routine depends on the sun, light and shade. When it comes to deciding what to paint, I begin by

drawing studies to see what particularly attracts me –for example in “The Domestic and the Sublime” I was drawn to the contrast between nature and the everydayness of human existence: the Hills Hoist and drying shirt juxtaposed with the wilderness of the escarpment beyond:

Issue 31 - May 2019


The Domestic and the Sublime, oil on canvas H45 x W63cm. 2018 ©Victoria Peel, Courtesy Artsite Galleries, Sydney, NSW. Issue 31 - May 2019


Although I prefer to work directly from nature, when necessary I work from drawings and research

photographs. Drawing is the foundation to all my paintings. I always begin by drawing - exploring composition, rhythm and the underlying abstract structure. When it comes to the final picture, I like the

immediacy of pastel, hand to paper, its versatility of drawing and colour. I also love the lusciousness of oil. I find that using oil paint without a medium is more direct – so I apply the paint straight from the tube, and

only use Archival Smooth Gel medium in the final stages of the painting.

Just as there are challenges being an artist, such as juggling time, family commitments, energy and financial constraints, there are moments of a sense of great achievement. Here I look to my recent 2018 solo

exhibition “From the Blue House” at Artsite Gallery, Sydney, NSW. I hope that the paintings exhibited conveyed the resonance and energy of the area through a sense of connection, celebration, contemplation and stillness, a liminal period of sensory threshold, barely perceptible, yet capable of eliciting a response, best articulated by renowned Sydney artist Bill Brown in an email he sent me following his visit to this exhibition: “The stillness in the imagery is brought to life by the movement that is the colour. This means that things are still but still moving. It is optical Art which all painting is. However your work takes on an abstract feel without the fracturing of form.

Consequently they keep giving the longer you look. This is something that means that the object & subject keep the viewer focused on & in the painting. It's called simultaneous surface: which means that if you use colour as ground & as object/ form they inter-change as positive & negative. You know this & It is what the true subject of paintings is.” (email from Bill Brown September 2018).” Issue 31 - May 2019


Blue Valley, (Spring evening, St Albans) Oil on canvas H50 x W 40cm.

2018 ©Victoria Peel, Courtesy Artsite Galleries, Sydney, NSW.

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This year I am completing paintings undertaken during my recent Macdonald Valley Artists in Residence and was also

supported by a NAVA NSW Artists’ Grant. Over the years, I have been captivated

by the beauty of the valley, its rich history from its original occupants, to early

settlers up to the present day, in the drama of the changing light. Recently I have been drawn to the time just before dark sets in – the gloaming – when the setting sun transforms the escarpments to gold. I love roofs too, by twilight they are translucent forms in the landscape catching the last lingering light. Settlers’ Arms, oil n canvas, H56 x W72cm. 2018 ©Victoria Peel, Courtesy Artsite Galleries, Sydney, NSW. Issue 31 - May 2019


My paintings are a love song celebrating the Valley and an exploration of the alchemy of light and my works of St Albans and the surrounding Hawkesbury sandstone country will be exhibited at the Court House, St Albans, NSW on Friday 31st May 6-9 pm. Do hope you will join me


Left: From the Court House, oil on paper, H38 x W 28cm. ŠVictoria Peel, Courtesy Artsite Galleries, Sydney, NSW. Issue 31 - May 2019


Flowers at Midnight Oil on board H41 x W32cm.

Victoria Peel © 2017.

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Summer Heat Oil on canvas H50 x W 40cm.

Victoria Peel © 2018.

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Spook, oil on linen, H36 x W 46cm. 2018 © Victoria Peel. Issue 31 - May 2019


Magenta Skies, oil on canvas, H 61 X W 122cm. 2018 © Victoria Peel.

Victoria Peel is represented by Artsite Galleries, Sydney, NSW and her profile can be viewed at: All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Victoria Peel © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019



Issue 31 - May 2019


Isabella Edwards Born in 1996 Isabella was raised in rural St. Albans, NSW and has always been influence by the amazing

natural landscape of the area and her grandparents historic convicted built pub The Settlers Arms Inn.

She discovered her passion for clay during the first year of study at National Art School after seeing a

wheel throwing class at work.

Page 140: Casual and Crown,14x14cm 14.2x103cm. porcelain. Right: The Ranch, 2017, porcelain, stain oxides glaze 6.6cmx7.2cmx7.2cm Isabella Edwards Š 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


Never Wasted Isabella Edwards Why is it that every memory has an accompanying place it inhabits in our minds? Even images of place can trigger recollections despite never experiencing that site. This intertwined relationship between memory and place has been an ongoing theme throughout my artist practice. My upcoming show Never Wasted at

Sabbia Gallery, opening May 7th – June 1st, explores this link further within the context of documentation of personal experience. The works deal with the events of the last eight months. Diving into difficulties and

realisations I’ve come to during this time. These experiences are reflected in the work through the form and surface of ceramic vessels. The ceramic medium is important for both its process, rich history and

expanded possibilities of making. Within this new body of work place and memory are explored further with emphasis on personal experience. It does so by focusing on the personal and vulnerable through the medium of the ceramic vessel. The result is work that takes the personal experience and site and shares that through the surreal lens of memory.

Place has always been a reoccurring theme in my art that almost certainly stems from living in naturally a

stunning and historically rich rural area. Growing up in the Hawkesbury district surrounded by the natural beauty of the valleys and river its remote location allows for a quiet contemplative space. However I find this quiet space is far from empty. Through inhabitation my experiences have become stored within the landscape. Issue 31 - May 2019


This concept of memory as place stems back to

Ancient Greece. Their orators (public speakers) proposed the idea of seeing memory as a large quiet

building, in which all rooms are filled with objects that trigger recollection as a method for improving

memory. Thus it’s only the landscape but also intrinsically buildings that have come to ‘hold’ memory. It’s not surprising then that imagery of locations can trigger recollections even if the audience have never experienced that site. This shows

place additionally as a fertile site for the

intermingling of memory and imagination. My works explore the link between place, memory and imagination through the ceramic form. The imagery is

as likely to be drawn from memories or experience just as it may be from a site that personifies a feeling.

While the space inside the vessel serves as a resting place for experience and emotion. Canoe Trip II, porcelain, Isabella Edwards© 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


The body of work for Never Wasted expands further on the investigation between site and recollection through the lens of personal documentation by cataloguing the last eight months. The works cover a collection of thoughts and feelings from what has been a mostly difficult part of my life however there are

moments of lightness throughout the vessels. This has manifested in surreal montages of environments composed from sites that embody a feeling or trigger recollection. These panoramas wrap around the

outside of the ceramic vessel. Their surreal nature complements the nature of memory in that it is an inherently fractured process often coloured by imagination. The works avoid conforming to ideas such as

happiness being inherent in ‘light’ or ‘bright’ colours, ideas that have their roots in colonisation. Rather the works attempt to convey these places as they are seen. Even if their brightness seems in contrast with difficult emotions or experiences they represent. These difficult emotions express themselves as loneliness, sadness and self discovery and their presence stems from the documentary nature of these works as record of the last eight months. As a whole this body of work attempts to explore these situations frankly without presenting them as inherently ‘good’ or ‘bad’ while honouring their emotional toll.

Page 145: Crown, 2019, 14.2x14.2x10.3cm. Porcelain, Isabella Edwards. Issue 31 - May 2019


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With the painterly nature of the work it is often questioned as to why it isn’t in watercolours instead of the laborious process of ceramics. Ceramics is an incredibly demanding process with risks at every stage of production. However its appeal comes from more than just its possibilities. Clay itself is such a visceral

medium and there is something immensely satisfying in its tactility. Apart from the physical satisfaction of being hands on with clay its plastic nature and diverse techniques make its possibilities virtually limitless.

The wheel in particular with its hypnotic movement and the fascinating process of throwing I have found particularly addictive. Lastly there is the gamble of the kiln fire that can make or (literally) break a work. It is

this risk that in part adds so much to the value of ceramics. Faults in the work may be there because of the maker or chance however the same can be true for windfalls. This unpredictability although intimidating can lead to surprises that elevate the work beyond what the artist intended. Overall ceramics attracts my attention over other media that require less equipment and have less risk because of its process, not in spite of it. Ceramics keep you humble with devastating losses while simultaneously providing unexpected gifts of change.

Page 147: Canoe Trip with hues spot I and II, smallest 6.1x5.7cm, largest 13x12.1cm. Porcelain, Isabella Edwards Š 2019.

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Through using ceramics as a medium enriches the works contextually through its rich history in the

domestic sphere. It has been evolving along side humankind since the global movement of humans from hunter-gather to sedentary farmers. This change from nomadic to settled civilisations gave humans a

chance at the husbandry of animals and plants and thus came the need for preservation and stage of resources. In turn ceramics flourished for these new applications in addition to its production being far more

suited to a sedentary lifestyle. It is these utilitarian roots that are responsible for the domestic connotations of the ceramic discipline. Many of the traditional forms in ceramics have domestic applications such as the vessel. The vessel in ceramics is a form for holding or storing, traditionally food or resources. In contemporary art the vessel is centred around holding and containing space. The vessels in my work create a physical resting place for memory and experience within the work while it’s open nature creates stand in for the infinite vastness of the sky. The history of ceramics has lead to its inherently domestic nature however contemporary ceramics has taken this context as an opportunity to create new meanings through old forms.

It is through our lived experience of place that it becomes a vessel for memory and yet imagery of sites never experienced. Furthermore these revisited memories are seen through their lens of imagination. This accounts for the surreal imagery of my work even through it comes from real experience. This experience is enhanced by the ceramic medium in not only its process but also its limitless possibilities. A medium rich in history which has become intertwined with that of humanity and domesticity. All this context has fed into a

body of work that is vulnerable and sincere which by being so allows it resonate. - Isabella Woods Š 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


Crown, 14.2x14.2x10.3cm. Porcelain, Isabella Edwards © 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Top: Life drawing in Green, 2017, variable-largest-3.5x3.5cm-porcelain. Isabella Edwards.

Below: Life drawing in Orange and Blue, 2017, variable-largest-3.5x3.5cm-porcelain. Isabella Edwards.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Life drawing in Red, 2017, variable-largest 3.5x3.5cm. Porcelain. Isabella Edwards. All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Isabella Edwards Š 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019



















L The Gully and the Grey Gums, mixed media, H61 x W92 cm. Carol Gill © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


CAROL GILL Carol Gill lives and creates at Lyrebird Gully Studio in the spectacular Hawkesbury River region of NSW. Gill studied Fine Arts and Graphic Design and during her early career


in art studios



agencies. The background as a Graphic Designer and passion for the

natural environment heavily influences her bodies of work, most of which are about the Australian landscape and its flora and bird life. The main focus of her art practise is mixed media collage using traditionally made "Hanji" mulberry papers, water

colours and gouache. All works begin with photography and graphite or colour field sketches most of which


are collected during

travelling. The intense colours of the pure pigments combined with the

organic textures of the mulberry paper evokes the power of the Australian landscape with vivid colours, textural layering and gestural finishes. You will usually find bird or botanical details in gouache in the works.

Carol Gill, photograph curtesy of artist. Issue 31 - May 2019


Sentinel in Barkandji Country, mixed media, H61 x W92 cm. Carol Gill © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019



Where did you grow up ? I grew up in the Sydney suburb of Northbridge in the 60s and 70s and spend my youth following the tracks and shoreline roaming the bushy surrounds of this Middle Harbour suburb. After high school I completed Fine Arts at Hornsby and Graphic Design at Randwick Technical Colleges.

What attracted you to the world of Art?

I always drew and spent most of my time copying illustrations from my story books from an early age. Children of the World was a favourite book to draw from and maps. I would copy maps endlessly.

When did your artistic passion begin?

Definitely in infants and primary school when one way for me to get a gold star was for my bookwork. My mother was a beautiful knitter and embroiderer and my father was a Lapidary designing gorgeous jewellery

for Mum. I was always encouraged to create and created anything and everything I could manage. So, I was raised with an appreciation of wonderful handmade things. However, when I left high school and

enrolled in Art School, I saw the multitude of avenues with which to express myself creatively. Issue 31 - May 2019


Issue 31 - May 2019


Have you always wanted to be an artist? I wanted to be a Choncologist from an early age. I was obsessed with shells and the sea and loved collecting. The natural environment has had a very tight hold on me all my life. I would draw my shells with

great solemness and detail. I still collect natural objects and I still see incredible beauty in seed pods, shells, pebbles et al‌

Describe your work? I work in mixed media collage using traditionally made mulberry papers or Hanji, layering these with watercolours and tissue paper, with gouache and ink gestural marks and details to create a textural and contemporary response to the world around me. My work has been described by others as having post-modern expressionist qualities.

What is the philosophy behind your work? To embed the textures of the natural environment into art and to have not just a visual or emotional response to them but also a tactile one.

Page 156: Welcome to the Jungle, mixed media, H40 x W50 cm . Carol Gill Š 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Do you have a set method / routine of working? I am now working full time as an artist. A few years ago, I built a large studio space on my property which has meant that I am not confined part time to the kitchen table any more. Consequently, my work has

increased in volume and size as I now have the space to work. I work flat on 4 or 5 canvases at a time as each work needs drying time in between layers of paper or paint. I often have a number of small works at

the end stage when I can sit at the gouache table and illustrate while other works are drying. I also use my studio as a gallery space. Why do you choose this material / medium to work with? Firstly, because its constructive and secondly because of the texture. I am very tactile, and textures give me so much more information about something than just a visual observation. I love the whole process from beginning to end. The controlled chaos and the trust you have to have in all the elements not just in yourself is a unique experience.

How important is drawing as an element to your artwork? Essential. Drawing is one of the first and most important elements for me.

I start all my works with

observation, photography and graphite field sketches en plein air. Sometimes if I have time, I will also do a colour sketch in watercolour or gouache. I will bring all these elements back to my studio and then restart

the process drawing more sketches before we even get close to a canvas. Drawing will return to the canvas when I put in the gestural gouache lines which mimic the graphite marks from the first sketches. Issue 31 - May 2019


Camel Bush Desert Queen Baths

Mixed media H76 x W76 cm. Carol Gill © 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Rock Fig Simpsons Gap

Mixed media H76 x W76 cm. Carol Gill © 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


What inspires your work / creations?

The natural environment always, rhythm, patterns and colour frequently, texture every time, experience in my life, the need to understand a place or animal or plant and the never-ending pathways. The landscape

and its contents great and small are my eternal muse and I travel often with my husband across Australia on great journeys through the desert and these experiences are incredible inspiration for me. What have been the major influences on your work?

As far as technique goes having background in graphic design heavily influences how I see things. As for subject matter the desert has been a big focus although the Hawkesbury and its birdlife are giving that a

run for its money right now. What are some of your favourite artworks and artists? I discovered Toulouse Lautrec at art school and fell in love with his gestural mark making and his posters. However, during further years at art school I grew to admire the Australians pushing the boundaries. Brett Whitely, John Olsen, Fred Williams, even Ken Done, and Jenny Kee all with unique mark making echniques that always inspire me to pick up something and draw. Each of them has a colour sense that is very Australian with vivid panels of colours some subdued by layering. American painter Georgia O’Keefe had a wonderful approach to art, and I love her observations. I was also fortunate enough to have Carol

Jerrems as a photography teacher one year at art school. Now that was interesting! Issue 31 - May 2019


Issue 31 - May 2019


.Any particular style or period that appeals? I am very much attracted to Asian and Indigenous art these days as well. These styles are also relevant to the technique I use. Concentrating on composition and form rather than light and tone. The discipline of the woodcuts contrasting with the gestural marks of a brush is a complex joy. I also follow many talented contemporary artists on social media and really admire many not so well-known artists making their art.

What are the challenges in becoming an exhibiting artist? Confidence in yourself that you have something to offer. Creating a body of work that is uniquely yours and one that you are proud to present. Maintaining momentum when you lose energy or have a setback. Understanding that you are not anyone else and that your journey is your own. Knowing that you will evolve and develop and that it is good. There is no manual for you and your art.

. Name your greatest achievement, exhibitions? My very first solo exhibition in 2002 at St Albans Gallery with my dear friend and mentor Suzie Startin. Suzie was a renown potter and artist who saw my potential and encouraged me to maintain control of the kitchen table and work like crazy in between full-time work, 3 kids and a husband with a mechanical repair business. It was more than art celebrated at that opening. It was sheer will and perseverance! Page 162: The Great Tingle Trees, mixed media, H91 x W91 cm. Carol Gill Š 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


What are you working on at present? Currently I have an influx of commissions. Collectively these are more difficult than an exhibition.

I work on a few artworks at a time as that is my process and best efficiency, but each commission

is different and not connected to the other like a body of work for an exhibition. There is no getting

into the zone and going for it. It’s a lot of stop start, and they will take months to complete. The references I work from generally are not mine rather the customers, so I have not stood and observed and felt the environment they are wanting me to represent for them. I have to try and represent what they have commissioned as

well maintain my own integrity. That is why I will always work to achieve an artwork that I am proud

to exhibit. In the end the customer is free to


cept the commission or not. I will only tackle a

commission subject once.

Carol Gill in her studio. Photograph curtesy of artist.

Issue 31 - May 2019


What do you hope viewers of your art works will feel and take with them?

I hope they can feel the journey. Whether its clambering through tall trees and rocky benches or standing on a ridgeline and appreciating the landscape and its vastness, or the flash of something colourful through

the bush. I hope they feel nature around them and wonder at its finer details. Your future aspirations with your art? I still have much reference to work with as far as subject goes, but I have noticed my technique changes each time I create a body of work and I find my practise is constantly developing. I would like to apply for an art residency somewhere and experiment with a completely different technique. I still attend workshops in different mediums to extend and challenge myself. I would like to combine my art with my crafting and weave more natural materials into my works.

Where do you see your art practice in five years’ time? I’m not completely sure with this question. I would like to be continuing and evolving on my journey is all I can say. I don’t know where this is taking me. The process controls me a lot of the time and I’m fine with that. I find it a very satisfying journey.

- Carol Gill © 2019.

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Waiting for his Queen Mixed media H36 x W36 cm. Carol Gill © 2019.

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Waiting in a Sacred Place Mixed media H36 x W36 cm. Carol Gill © 2019.

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Rainbow Flight

Mixed media H36 x W36 cm. Carol Gill © 2019.

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Lyrebird Gully Studio Webbs Creek NSW

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Carol Gill © 2019

Right: Forest Giants #1, H91 x W61 cm. Carol Gill © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019



conversation with a vending machine

by mid-autumn

The café closed down

he’d singled ‘her’ out

last summer,

and with a voice nearing murmurous,

wasn’t even breaking even

gets on with his life story.

they said

Talking to ‘her’

so the builders moved in

usually starts with early interests:

to break it up.

childhood pastimes,

Away went the service counter,

cricket - a popular topic!

the glass display cabinet, a dishwasher, sink & the chrome-coloured refrigeration units -

He has just enough volume refrigeration units - once opened by cafe staff -

so that he can be heard

staff who, although often very busy, over the steady hum of the energy-efficient, electric motor…

could still manage a smile and hold a little conversation




for the lonely.

a popular place

for those subsisting, for struggling young mothers and the elderly… Issue 31 - May 2019


last winter’s memory Last winter we’d watched a film

You told me how you liked it

Her house is gone now,

That got us both worked up

And I told you how I liked it

Knocked flat for holiday apartments

And so we drove away from the cinema

And after a while we stopped and sat there,

By office-gripped speculators.

Away from the main streets

Curiously unfulfilled yet happy in the moment.

There’s nothing else here besides

Away, but a little from the town -

Finally, you turned the key and I watched

Where just across a main road,

The town I grew up in but had since

The wet branches, grazed in headlight,

A round-poled fence iron-wrung in comfort

only stopped for weekend visits.

Flick away at our retreating passions

Keeping out those more curious lovers

And the car windows grew foggy for us

Tail-light embers sliding slowly down a hill

Who have lived yet now lie beneath

To keep out the wild, stiff night

That took us back to a quiet town

The flat, moss-heaved faces of cold-

Our curious hands swayed

And to main streets

standing stones.

Like the branches beyond our sight

Where a house crept in shadows.

Whom the westerly kept toying with.

There my grandmother slept

- Brad Evans © 2019.

While you left me to my own awaiting bed…

Issue 31 - May 2019


Batak Sculpture from

Northern Sumatra Exhibition held at Civilizations Museum, Singapore

LORRAINE FILDES Issue 31 - May 2019


Who are the Batak?


The term "Batak" has been applied to a group of six communities (Pakpak, Karo, Simalungun, Toba, Angkola and Mandailing) related by language and culture. They are believed to be descendants of a powerful Proto-Malayan people that inhabited the region around the Bukit Barisan mountain range and Lake Toba, on the Indonesian island

of Sumatra. The inland mountainous jungle meant these people had little contact with the early European sea

traders. The communities remained isolated and kept their culture

and religion. Batak religion was a mix of animism and ancestor veneration. They were little influenced by the

wider world until their lands were incorporated into the Dutch East Indies at the end of the 19th century. The

Bataks are now primarily Muslim, although some of the Batak of Sumatra. Š UMMA

Toba are Christian but their traditional beliefs have been preserved. Strong tribal elements have survived until the present day. Issue 31 - May 2019


The Bataks are primarily farmers growing rice, corn, sweet potatoes, and other crops, although they also

practice the arts of weaving, pottery-making, metalworking, building, and wood carving. Trade and commercial relations have been developing since the beginning of the 20th century, but elements of the

natural farm economy have been preserved. From the very beginning of the Dutch colonization of Sumatra (in the 17th century), the Bataks have stubbornly defended their independence. Today the Batak constitute one of the largest minority groups in Indonesia at around 6.1 million people at the turn of the 21st century. However, many Bataks have now settled in other parts of Indonesia. The Batak sculpture serves as a means of honouring and communicating with the supernatural beings believed to ensure the safety and prosperity of the village community. Most images depict local ancestors

or fearsome supernatural guardians. The Bataks are mainly concerned with deities and spirits related to fertility or protection from illness and disaster. Batak rituals focus on the souls of the deceased (begu).

Tradition required complex rites to be practiced over many years to ensure that the begu were properly shepherded to the land of the dead, to be among the ancestors.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Elaborate carving decorating a clan house .

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Ancestor and deity figures A wide variety of human-form figures (gana-gana) were produced by Batak sculptors. Ancestor figures (debata idup, literally “living ancestors�), represented departed relatives. Guardian figures (pangulubalang) were carvings of dead spirits enlisted

by priests to ward off supernatural attacks.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Medicine horn Container for magical substances (Naga

Morsarang) made from water buffalo horn and wood. Toba Batak people, 19th - early 20th century. Medicine horns were containers for one of

the most powerful substances in a priest’s pharmacopeia: raja ni pagar (“the king of protective medicine�). The horn's pointed end is carved in the

form of a seated human figure. The wider, open end is plugged with an elaborate wooden stopper that depicts the singa (a zoomorphic underworld deity) with five human figures riding on its back. These

human figures may represent the succession of ritual masters who preceded the present owner of the container..

Issue 31 - May 2019









Medicine container


(guri-guri) Karo Batak,


19th century.


Wood, ceramic, cotton, glass beads, metal. Issue 31 - May 2019


Medicine containers Priests needed to produce a wide variety of concoc-

tions for use in healing. The most infamous of these were a class of magical substances known as

pupuk, made from disagreeable materials such as rotten leaves, soil from where two animals had

fought, or the itchy scales of the sugar palm. The priest stored his pupuk in ceramic jars with carved wooden stoppers, known as guri-guri, or in lidded






perminaken. Elaborate covers and straps were often woven around the jars to protect them. The stoppers were very often elaborately carved with riding figures and other human or animal forms. Left: Medicine container (guri-guri) Karo Batak, 19th century. Wood, ceramic, palm fibre.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Medicine container (guriguri) made from wood, ceramic,



beads, metal, animal hair and palm fibre.

Close-up of the elaborately



with human figure riding

an animal form.

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Issue 31 - May 2019


Betel nut mortars These mortars were used by people who had difficulty chewing the hard areca nut of the betel palm. The mortar was used to crush the nut into a paste and mix it with lime and pepper leaves

– making betel nut a narcotic chew. The





(panutuan napuran) are made from

bronze and iron. Toba Batak, 19th century.

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Ceremonial Masks Masks were carved from wood and often painted and had hair of humans or animals attached. They were used in several different ways by the Batak people. There were ceremonial dance masks which assisted dancers to tell important stories, ceremonial burial masks and masks used to pray for things from the gods

such as rain at seed sowing time.

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Rider figure carved from sandstone (hodahoda bakkuwang).

Toba Batak, 19th century. This powerful sculpture shows a rider atop what may be an elephant, although it is more likely a horse. Such sculptures, known as hoda-hoda bakkuwang, are said to represent deceased rajas, the powerful

clan heads of traditional Batak society. The heavily weathered surface suggests an

earlier date than the 1800s.

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Seated male figure carved from sandstone and painted with natural pigments. Toba Batak, 17th or

18th century. The figure sits cross-legged, a rare type in Batak sculpture. This pose may have been inspired by Hindu-Buddhist sculpture, the figure is unusual in the realistic representation of human features. The angular jaw, block-like nose and elongated ears mark it Batak. The figure most likely represents a local chieftan. The small cone-shaped

form in front may have held a consecrated substance used to anoint either the statue or

devotee of it. The red and black stripes painted on the torso simulate a shirt, and also mark the figure

as important, since such a combination of colours was reserved for powerful individuals.

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Batak Craftsmen Like many traditional Indonesian communities, the Batak built grand clan houses which they richly decorated with carvings and sculptural elements. These houses were built by specialists known as pande

rumah (literally “house building masters�). Craftsmen also carved drums and musical instruments, whilst others forged weapons,

cast bronze containers, tools, jewellery, and decorative details for a host of other objects.

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Architectural decoration The fronts of Batak clan houses and rice granaries were richly decorated with carvings. These





symbols to ward off malicious spirits and also a way for the clan to display their wealth. Lizards

were regarded as protective, and were often carved on house doors and the covers and

sides of containers.

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Heirloom chest (hombung), carved from wood. Toba or Simalungun Batak, 19th century.

Large storage chests – hombung




important clan valuables such as jewellery, weapons and fine textiles were

stored. The valuables of the clan were placed in the chest and the chest served as the clan chief’s bed; it was impossible to open while he lay sleeping upon

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Large carved birds, called manuk manuk, were suspended from the rafters of traditional clan houses. Bird

images are common throughout Indonesia, and are usually thought to relate to an ancient Austronesian belief in a spirit bird.

All Rights Reserved on article and photographs - Lorraine Fildes Š 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


ART NEWS Issue 31 - May 2019


ART NEWS Issue 31 - May 2019





D 8 - 21 MAY 2019




M2 GALLERY 4/450 Elizabeth St Surry Hills, Sydney.

N Issue 31 - May 2019


‘Immortalised in pixel form, ’ unique digital photograph, Edmond Thommen © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


MARK ELLIOT-RANKEN THREADS 6 - 22 JUNE 2019 Official Opening: Thurs. 6th June 6 - 8pm.

DISORDER GALLERY 108 Cnr. Stanley & Burke Sts. Darlinghurst, NSW. Blue Study, Acrylic on canvas, H200 x W350 cm. Mark Elliot-Ranken © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


THREADS Artist and arts educator, Dr. Mark Elliot-Ranken, comes to Disorder Gallery this June with his latest exhibition Threads. “Suppose you came as an explorer into an unknown country with a language quite strange to you. In what circumstances would you

say that the people there gave orders, understood them, rebelled against them and so on. The common behaviour of mankind is the system of reference by means of which we interpret an unknown

language.” - Ludwig Wittgenstein Philosophical Investigations. Wittgenstein's words inspired Mark Elliot-Ranken's latest series of abstracts, varied in scale, subject matter and in the unique approach of Mark's distinctive visual ‘language'. According to Mark “To do as Wittgenstein asks us to do, that is create or at least try and interpret that ‘unknown especially in


regard to the terrain of our inner world is to pick up

the threads of our own self…that which makes ‘our-self’. Such a language is a tool for exploration rather than


communication.” After almost thirty years of exhibiting, Threads represents Mark Elliot-Ranken's first solo show with Disorder Gallery. Left: Tao, Acrylic on canvas, H150 x W100cm. Mark Elliot-Ranken © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


MATTHEW COUPER 3 May -2 June 2019

In Memory of Water La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, USA.


Left:: Speculative / Operative, 2019, oil on panel, framed, 20" x 16"

courtesy of La Luz de Jesus Gallery

Issue 31 - May 2019


MATTHEW COUPER FORTHCOMING EXHIBITIONS In Memory of Water, 3 May -2 June 2019 La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, USA.

Recent Acquisitions by the Wallace Arts Trust, 2 April - 26 May 2019, TSB Wallace Arts Centre, Auckland, NZ.

27th Annual Wallace Art Awards, 13 April - 9 June 2019 The Suter Art Gallery, Nelson, NZ.

Perplexing Visions and Unrealities, 8 June - 28 July 2019 Yucca Valley Visual & Performing Arts Center, CA, USA.

27th Annual Wallace Art Awards, Wallace Gallery, Morrinsville, Waikato, NZ.

Solo Exhibition, Galerie Gimpel+Mulller, Paris, France, 2020. Left: Our Lady of Consulation, oil panel, 1622 x 2022 mm. Matthew Couper © 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


AMY DYNAN 26 June -13 July 2019

WATER Opening night: 6-8 PM, Wednesday 3 July 2019

Stanley Street Gallery 1/52-54 Stanley Street, Darlinghurst, NSW.

Water 5 Iceland, charcoal on paper, H106 x W81cm. Amy Dynan© 2019. Issue 31 - May 2019


Brooching the Subject 3

Brooching the Subject 3 “Brooching the Subject”, now in its third year is an







practicality at Timeless Textiles Gallery. It is with great anticipation that each year brooches created by fibre

artists from around the world are displayed and are submitted for judging. We no longer need to “broach the subject” as brooches

bcome more popular as fashion items, personal symbols, historical reminders and

collectors’ items.

While brooches may have begun their life as functional

utilitarian items, they are now far more valued for their artistic beauty and style.

All brooches will be on display and for sale

in the gallery from Wednesday 8 May until Sunday 12 May 2019.

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27 APRIL - 17 MAY 2019 DUNGOG CONTEMPORARY GALLERY Issue 31 - May 2019


Luciana Smith Luciana Smith is a Sydney based artist who graduated from UNSW Art & Design in 2015.

Luciana draws from her own observations and a range of

references from the internet and art history, twisting her subjects into a world that exists somewhere between reality and the imagination. Luciana’s work is a collection of strange, anonymous portraits of people and mundane places. Her recent body of work recontextualises scenes to offer new perspectives; it is a contemplation of the time we live in. Luciana reanimates her surroundings with bold colour as a way of analysing quotidian behaviours and environments. The paintings are a collection of opportunistic snapshots. Luciana captures candid subjects in fleeting moments,

146 - 150 Dowling Street, Dungog, NSW.

finding humour in day-to-day life, and in looking at people and our settings in a skewed way. Issue 31 - May 2019



27 APRIL - 17 MAY 2019 DUNGOG CONTEMPORARY GALLERY Issue 31 - May 2019


KATHERINE ROONEY A lifetime painter Katherine attended The National Art School in Sydney where she studied painting under Bill

Brown. Represented for many years by Howard Leonard Galleries in Paddington, Sydney. Rooney has moonlighted for many years as a sales rep for an art supply company in order to

feed her painting habit. The works in this exhibition documenting stops upon her travel’s. These are paintings of road, sky, land and cattle, a familiar terrain that is so much a part of our collective memory, yet they are more than that.

146 - 150 Dowling Street, Dungog, NSW. Issue 31 - May 2019





Y Issue 31 - May 2019


Nicky Elliott & Pete Delahunty - “We're thrilled to

our toes to introduce you to Eric & Robyn and the Mythical Beasts. This film is a passionate

love story, shot over two years, featuring two of the most extraordinary, funny and creative artists

in Australia.� Film by Nicky Elliott and Pete Delahunty

Producer: Tom Zubrycki.

Film Coming soon in 2019 / 20. Link to trailer Eric & Robyn and the Mythical Beasts:

Eric & Robyn Werkhoven. Issue 31 - May 2019







I V E Barking Up the Right Tree, Acrylic on Fabriano paper, 90 x 120cm. - E&R Werkhoven © 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019


MYTHICAL BEASTS 12- 28 JULY 2019 Official Opening: SATURDAY 13 JULY

3pm. onwards. Art Systems Wickham Gallery 40 Annie St Wickham, Newcastle NSW.

Left: Psychopomps, oil pastel / aqua graphit pencil on paper H125 x W80 cm. Robyn Werkhoven © 2019.

Issue 31 - May 2019


STUDIO LA PRIMITIVE ARTS ZINE Since October 2013 Robyn Werkhoven has published the

Online Art and Literary magazine STUDIO LA PRIMITIVE ARTS ZINE. Featuring artist’s interviews, exhibitions, art news, poetry and essays. Arts Zine in 2017 was selected by the NSW State Library to be preserved as a digital publication of lasting cultural value for long-term access by the Australian community. To view previous issues click on image of cover.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Click on cover to view the issue.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Click on cover to view the issue.

Issue 31 - May 2019


Click on cover to view the issue.

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Phone: 0431 853 600

Director: Colin Lawson Issue 31 - May 2019



APRIL 26 – MAY 12


MAY 24 – JUNE 9


JUNE 14 – JUNE 23


JUNE 28 – JULY 7


JULY 12 – JULY 28

ROBYN & ERIC WERKHOVEN Issue 31 - May 2019



ON THE FARM 2019 Issue 31 - May 2019



Expressions of Interest Open March 1

Sculpture on the Farm October Long Weekend 4 -7 October, 2019 or by contacting


Philippa Graham by email on Issue 31 - May 2019


studio la primitive jewellery

Dungog By Design

224 Dowling St, Dungog NSW. Issue 31 - May 2019


DUNGOG BY DESIGN handmade & Inspiring

224 Dowling St Dungog NSW Issue 31 - May 2019































R White Gulls into Black, H240 x W180cm, oil on canvas, James Drinkwater © 2018

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