Sunday, December 11, 2016

Drawn Upstairs 6 in Gallery 1

 8th - 18th December 2016

“The concept of Drawing is akin to a visionary process; it has an origin, a point of inception, and from here one’s ideas travel and are, in most cases, open ended -there are no rules; drawing can be as minimal as a breath and as complex as the wave structures and recording structures and recordings of the ocean.  Drawing is a kinaesthetic; a movement between points, a connection, a recognition and gesture of any idea, mark, trace, line, symbol, shape, medium, space or surface – everyone has their own language of the mark[1].

Is drawing still the foundation of art study?  If so, then NAS is offering it up in abundance.

Drawn Upstairs 6 showcases the work of attendees of The Drawing Room, a weekly self-directed drawing experience held at the Royal Exchange Hotel in Newcastle.  The invention of retired art teacher Anne Caddey, The Drawing Room is described as offering a relaxed drawing boudoir, a somewhat theatrical experience drawing nude and costumed models, with like-minded individuals, a relaxing chair and a glass of wine on hand if required.  Anne draws on inspiration from theatre performance, music, dance, circus, dramatic art and costumes to provide a stimulating alternative to a conventional drawing class.  While this experience may not suit everyone, Anne has formed a network of regulars along with casual visitors.  One visitor to Newcastle spoke to Anne of their enjoyment of the class and the fact that this kind of event was not available in the home of art, New York.  We have it exclusively in Newcastle.

Drawn Upstairs 6 also showcases the work of students in Peter Lankas’ tutored life-drawing class at the Newcastle Community Arts Centre (NCAC).  This class is usually booked out in advance and is not always able to cater for the numbers of people who want to study life-drawing under Peter Lankas’ experienced teaching.  The work of the 2016 students are on display as testament to the wide approaches a student can take with interpretation of the human body through drawing. This class will resume in the third week of January 2017 through to March at NCAC 246 Parry Street’s premises.

The artists are: Chris Bretherton, Matt Dougherty, Di Turnbull, Anne Swanson, Linda Alcorn, Jason Sar, Hide Kobaijashi, John Langley, Emma Gibbons, Greg Dickinson, Gwynne Jones, Julie Byles, Lyn Falkiner, Stella Kerr, Cathie Sawyer, Shelagh Lummis, Stephen Berry, Toni Amidy, Peter Lankas, Ronald Myers, David Titchmarsh, Cherie Wren, Jon Wilks, Chris Clifton, Allen Littlewood.

Selected works above by Anne Swanson, Chris Brereton, Chris Clifton, David Titshmarsh, Di Turnbull, John Langley, Stephen Berry, Toni Amity, Stella Kerr.
Information about The Drawing Room can be found at:

[1] Interesting article on contemporary Australian Drawing authored by Dr Irene Barberis, artist, Director Global Centre for Drawing and Metasenta Publications, Co-Director Gallery Langford120 and Senior Lecturer RMIT

The Naked Truth Gallery 2

The Naked Truth highlights the work of attendees in NCAC’s weekly self-directed life - drawing class.  This class provides a model, morning tea and refreshments and an opportunity to continue to practice and improve drawing skill while enjoying the camaraderie mix of art in a relaxed, friendly environment.

The artists are: Robyn Culley, Cliff Hosking, Pamela Ireland, Denise Johns, Melody Jones, Lee Jordan, Richard Kearney, Carole Marshall, Tim Messiter, Sharyn Street, Ines Ullmann, Patricia Williamsz, Jim Woodbury,

 Selection only of  work above by  Denise Johns, Sharyn Street, Carole Marshall, Lee Jordon

Information on NCAC classes:

Monday, November 14, 2016

Newcastle Art Space Gallery - Sweet Sixteen - an exhibition by NCAC Studio 20 artists

Gallery 1 & 2

Sweet Sixteen

Andrew Finnie, Jennifer Finnie, Malcolm Sands, Sarah Knights, Michael Bateman, Patricia Williamz

This exhibition marks the sixteenth year that artists from Studio 20 at Newcastle Community Arts Centre, have hung their work in Newcastle Art Space Gallery (and beyond).  This is the last time the work will be shown at this venue with the pending closure of the Centre.  While in itself a difficult time, what lies beyond could mark quite a change in art and for particular artists.  The Seven Painters’ (six showing) Tuesday night regular painting sessions and camaraderie has taken them into successful ventures in image-making. 

These shows are always filled with interesting works and the predominantly small panels reflect individual style, technique, colour palette and subject decisions. For Andrew Finnie, Jennifer Finnie and Michael Bateman their sense of belonging, and love of the city, appear to play the dominant role.  Within our everyday domain, lies such beauty and wonder just waiting to be captured. Their works have documented the changing face of inner city Newcastle across its history as well as the iconic harbour and beach scene.

Above Sample of works by Jennifer Finnie
Above Sample of works by Andrew Finnie
Above Sample of works by Michael Bateman

Malcolm Sands’ work transcends a particular place and resonates with memories of landscape that could be Australian or European.  This is their appeal: that they can sit within the local space and also further afield. We need to see more work by this artist in the community.
Above Sample of works by Malcolm Sands

Sarah Knights and Patricia Williamz look to the wider expanse of Australian landscape, documenting time spent travelling and ‘seeing’ the country.  The softer mark making of Sarah Knights’ work is perfectly balanced against the strong, rich coloured palette of Patricia Williamz in these images.  I see such joy of looking and translating colour and marks into image from both these artists.

Above Sample of works by Sarah Knights
Above Sample of works by Patricia Williamz

Just a wonderful exhibition as always from this dedicated group of painters.  However, I see possibilities here for further pushing of ideas and paint on the surface.  It will be interesting to see what happens when they find a new physical location in which to work.  Who knows? Perhaps working in a new physical location may influence their work in interesting directions, while the friendship and support they share will continue to encourage further artistic explorations.  Exciting times ahead.

Smaller works fit in smaller spaces.  Do you have space on a wall or in your home office?  Still some works for sale and the time is right to support these artists at this period of their art making pursuits.

The show continues until 27th November.

Winner Newcastle Club Foundation Prize 2016 - Andrew Devine and Peter Tilley

The Winner(s) Newcastle Club Foundation Prize 2016  - Andrew Devine and Peter Tilley

Saturday, November 5, 2016

The Newcastle Club Foundation Painting Prize 2016


Gallery 1 & 2

Judges always have a difficult task and most of the works in this selection could easily be a winner. Gillian Shaw with Ron Ramsey quipped before announcing the finalist names on Friday night that they had a get-a-way car parked outside and the engine was running.  I think I saw them this morning still circling Newcastle and heading NORTH, FAR NORTH.

Seeking a prize purse of $10,000 the finalists are:

Andrew Finnie, James Drinkwater, Grant Vercoe, Lottie Consalvo, Dallas Bray, Andy Devine & Peter Tilley, Nicola Bolton, John Earle, John Morris, Kerrie Coles and Leslie Tilley.

The winner of the prize will be announced at a later private event arranged by the Newcastle Club.

The remaining works now form part of the Newcastle Club Foundation Painting Prize’s first Salon de Refuse (well sort of as they were winners being selected for the first round) at NAS and are all for sale and today is your last chance. 
Why not be smart, hedge your bets and potentially purchase work from the next winner of a significant art prize. This then would increase the value further of your current purchase as well as giving you the day-to-day pleasure and joy of having a wonderful work in your home or office space. It would also provide funds for the artist to continue to make the next work.

The artists in the Salon de Refuse are Leslie Duffin, Dino Consalvo, Jennifer Finnie, Patricia Williamz, Elisabeth Lawrence, Vanessa Turton, Dorothy Compton, Libby Cusick, Ruth Chapman, Bronwyn Greive, Bev Leggett Simmons, Varelle Hardy, Rudy Mulder, John Wilks, Gina Ermer, Belinda Street, Peter Gallagher, Joseph Belford, Michael Bateman, Jordan Fardell, Stephen Bennett, Andrew Dennis, Paul Maher, Gwendolin Lewis, Geoffrey Breen, Kay McFarlane Smith, Bev Leggett Simmons, Madeleine Cruise, Ros Elkin, Catherine Kavanagh Di Gravio, Jim Woodbury and Ileana Clarke.
Also consider purchasing the new NCAC publication edited by Andrew Finnie with photography by Joerg Lehmann Artists and Artisans with funds going back to support the NCAC with its future relocation.

See the exhibition today and make your own choices about the winners.  If you had the judge's role who would you pick?

What is next at NAS

The Seven Painters “Sweet Sixteen” Exhibition

Opening night Friday 11th November