Memorable opening

Landscape Memories got off to a good start on Friday night (21/7/2017) on the official opening with 50 guests and visitors at the unveiling in the Murrurundi & District Historical Society’s exhibition church hall.

Curated by renowned artist Hanna Kay, the exhibition entailed no less than 13 selected paintings and objects from artists as far afield as Muswellbrook.

“What a perfect setting for an art event,” Brad Franks, arts centre manager for the Muswellbrook Art Gallery said.

He was commenting on the renovated Presbyterian Church hall which is used by the museum for exhibition and events.

“The sloping floor is really astounding, I must source its refence,” he said.

The group of four painting on show from Brad created a lot of interest. If there was a viewer’s pick it was the works above titled Murrurundi Pass.

Scone resident Carol Scaramuzzi’s painting of the Red Centre raised a lot of interest first for the painting and secondly, for the narrative.

All artists were asked to give a story of their work.

The striking red and white (above) interpretation of a gum sapling eaking out life from the rock face was a stark interpretation of a time in her battle with cancer.

In almost a before and after, fellow Scone artist Alison Hodges presented two paintings of a creek stream with and without water telling of the dilemma farmers face when the big dry comes.

Peter Calin, owner of Haydon Hall gallery gave Teresa Byrne top marks for the detail in her ‘Birds’ painting telling of the time when Teresa lived in England on the Epsom Downs.

It eerily reminded her of Alfred Hitchcock movie, ’The Birds’.

In turn, his submission, a ceramic plate depicting Newport Beach (Sydney), after a storm was keenly viewed and created buyer interest.

Peter also submitted a miniature of the lazy days in South Australia: “Where the Hills sweep down to meet the Gulf south of the city of Adelaide. It’s where we would escape to beat the

South Australia summer heat and cool down in the ocean.”

Fran Wachtel’s ironmongery always is a crowd pleaser and her interpretation of the advent of mining was no exception.

Titled ‘Turquoise Parrot’ it reminded her of: “When my children were small we would sit on the veranda of our house at Maules Creek and watch the turquoise parrots lift out of the grass and turn the sky turquoise and gold. Then mines came, and away went the birds” she wrote in her description.

Another Scone artist Hillary Nicol, chose the impending Scone bypass as a subject reflecting on the demise of the trees.

“My concern (is) at the large numbers of beautiful trees on the Scone golf course that will be destroyed,“ she wrote in her prologue.

“I have walked past these trees, with the dog, for many years. It’s like losing a good friend.”

She said from a certain angle the trees “seem to be reaching out to each other and when the little pink ribbon appeared on the one on the right, the image became even more poignant.”

Marie Lunney remembered a bend in the river on her property.

“Memories of my children playing and swimming on hot summer’s days,” she wrote. “Skipping stones in the river and taking in the shade of the willows.”

Jelle van den Berg, curator of the museum’s first art show, painted an abstract titled ‘Caves’.

“Drawing is the most exciting process of bringing together observation, imagination and memory,” he wrote in his explanation.

“If the three elements combine you can look at a hillside, contemplate natural forms of habitation and see time.”

Wingen Mountain and her mother-in-law was the subject of Wingen artist Sue Adams.

“We live on a hilltop where my mother-in-law resided happily alone for many years,” she wrote.

“She found great solace in the natural environment and the serenity of the landscape.

“In this painting I am remembering her overlooking this magical valley as she often did.”

Local Murrurundi artist Jean Davies’ pen drawings are always delicate, definitive and keenly sought after.

Her submission of the trees on the bank for the Pages River is no exception.

Behind the old Telegraph Cafe: “has long been a special place to sit and paint or draw when the river is flowing - casuarinas line the river in this area and it is a pleasant, sheltered spot to spend some spare time enjoying a break and a coffee,” she wrote.

The paintings will be on display until October 1 in the Church Hall on the New England Highway in the centre of Murrurundi.