Wonderful news that Castlemaine Art museum is to stay open. It had been scheduled to close on 11 August but a significant financial donation has been made by anonymous benefactors to support the Museum’s operating costs and allow free admission.
Our Season 8 exhibition, held from Friday 30 September 2016 to Monday 3 July 2017, was entitled “Fifty Shades of Brown”. Many of the pieces exhibited were from the 1960s and 1970s but we also bought new pieces for the exhibition, including recent work by Robert Barron, Owen Rye and Julie Shepherd. On our north plinth we had a lovely display of work by Sylvia Halpern. It was a slower season this year with fewer visitors overall but we still enjoyed the people who came to see us and made good Internet sales .
Our pattern of buying changed during the year. Our drawers and storeroom shelves now contain so much stock that we decided to focus our new acquisitions on a smaller number of significant works by known artists. Now on our winter break, we will keep the current display in place for a while before starting to set up the new exhibition. Visitors are still welcome by appointment during the winter months and we will let you know more about what we are planning for Season 9 in a few week’s time.
Illustrated: Several pieces by Sylvia Halpern from the Season Eight exhibition.
We still have two weeks to go before our eighth season at Australian Pottery at Bemboka comes to an end at close of business on Monday 3 July. However, we will still be open by appointment over the winter months, and we will have a new exhibition ready to open on Friday 29 September.
The gallery will be open as usual this Friday and Saturday 10 & 11 February but will be closed on the Sunday and Monday. We will return to our usual hours the following week..
This year we will be closed on Friday 23 December for family reasons but will resume our normal Friday to Monday hours for the rest of the holiday season. We are also happy to open the gallery outside these hours by appointment.
Three recent Col Levy acquisitions on display in our downstairs foyer.
We were pleased to acquire this large handbuilt piece by Judy Lorraine this week. It is 32 cm high with a tiny nut-like opening and swelling assymetric shape. The surface has been worked all over with a modelling tool and burnished with oxide. Judy Lorraine has almost no auction record and, until now, we have only been able to find her thrown domestic work on the secondary market, so this piece has been a welcome addition to our collection.
Our eighth season in Bemboka will open on Friday 30 September with a new exhibition called “Fifty Shades of Brown”.
Brown is a warm colour ranging in tone from beige, straw and light tan through copper and bronze to deep, rich siennas and umbers. The exhibition draws on these tones with works that are raw-glazed (some woodfired), or coloured with slips, understains and glazes. Many are from the 1960s and 1970s but we have also bought new pieces for the exhibition, including recent work by Robert Barron, Owen Rye and Julie Shepherd.
Each season we think that the new exhibition is the best so far and this is no exception. We have been living with it for several weeks now and it has been giving us much pleasure. The labels are almost done, the new cards have been printed and our next major task before the new exhibiton opens will be to work on our spring garden so that it will be neat and tidy on 30 September.
Illustrated above: Helen Gulliver, Decanter; Noel Blue, Floor Jug.
Our Season 7 exhibition, held from October 2015 to June 2016, was entitled “Pale and interesting” and continued our exploration of glazes and decorative techniques, with an emphasis on pastels and lighter shades. We really enjoyed putting this exhibition together and living with it during the year. Amongst new works we bought for the exhibition were salt-glazed vases by John Dermer, bowls by Shannon Garson and Marina Pribaz and a handsome installation piece called “Pilgrimage” by Kim Anh Nguyen (illustrated). A number of visitors made their way down our gravel road to see the exhibition and we had a steady flow of sales through our online shop.
We opened the season as one of three gardens hosting a progressive lunch for the Bemboka Garden Club. Blessed with another year of wonderful rain, our garden thrived and David and I grew fit mowing the lawns in tandem with our push mowers. In March we welcolmed our first grandson, Thomas James, into the world. Now on our winter break, I am about to begin the task of packing up the current exhibition. Visitors are till welcome by appointment and we will let you know more about what we are planning for Season 8 in a few week’s time.