Kingborough artists have put in a significant number of works towards the Arts Society Waterways exhibit, which opened on Friday, February 5 at the Long Gallery in Salamanca.
The Art Society of Tasmania Inc (AST), now in its 138th year, holds the major ten-day selected art exhibition every two years and strives to promote the work of talented Tasmanian artists.
This year focussing on the theme of Water, the exhibition will run until Sunday, February 14.
Artists residing in Tasmania were invited to submit up to two works presenting their own interpretation of water for the exhibition.
“It is interesting to note that of the 120 artists a third are from the Kingborough and the Channel area,” said Vice President of AST, Susie Meech.
“The aim of the Waterways exhibition is to create opportunities for Tasmanian artists and promote the idea that art is for everyone.
“This concept is further reinforced with the invitation to prominent people in our community to choose their favourite work and state their reason on a label placed beside their chosen piece.”
Kingborough artists shared their inspirations and methods for their pieces in the lead up to the exhibit opening last week.
Mahdi Chandler of Gordon said views across the D’Entrecasteaux Channel were part of the inspiration behind her two works for the exhibit, Reflections and Water’s Edge Trio.
“I live, work and teach in Gordon on a bush block and have done so for 25 years,” said Ms Chandler.
“My home and studio have views across the D’Entrecasteaux Channel to the Neck on Bruny Island and out into the Tasman Sea; Tasman Island provides the last visible landmark.
“The light here and the layering of land, sea and sky provides me with endless inspiration for my art practise.
Ms Chandler uses mixed media across a range of 2D and 3D works and said the area is also the perfect place to go out and source materials.
“I use an assortment of things from my bush block and beyond including clay as pigments for paints and pots, plant material for dyes, printing and resource material and water’s edge forays, collecting shells, rocks, imagery, seaweed and so much more.
“My work is intuitive and doesn’t start with any particular idea, it is really about an emotional connection to place and the materials I have available at the time.”
Paul Wilson is a Kingston based artist who has submitted a steel sculpture to the exhibition.
“I have been living in Kingston for the last 20 years and it gives me the opportunity to be close to the marine environment that l've always been drawn to,” said Mr Wilson.
“I love diving and fishing, and now my interest has grown to include birds and wildlife.
“Most recently Moulting Lagoon has been a big part of my recreation time.
“This magical spot is no better place to see a pelican,” Mr Wilson said, explaining the inspiration for his exhibition work.
Landscape artist Sally James contributed a piece to the exhibit entitled River Bed which was inspired by the North West Bay River, near Margate and depicts the variety and complexity of moving water.
“I feel very lucky to live in Kingborough and I love the way the coastline is always part of life here; from family picnics and holidays, scout activities, nature walks and afternoons at the beach,” Ms James remarked.
“This area is full of beauty and variety with mountain views, dramatic coastal cliffs, beaches, pastoral land, rivers, and waterfalls.
“As a landscape artist there is enough inspiration here to keep me going even if I only depicted the local area!
“As well as visual beauty, I am often inspired by how this landscape supports and enriches the lives of those who live here, something that is so easily taken for granted.
“For example, two of my past works were of the Scout Regatta in Snug and a local rockpool/swimming area near Baronia Beach, Kingston; both of these scenes showed people developing deeper ties to the places by interacting with them and creating good memories.”
The exhibition offers a major prize, the Art Society of Tasmania Award for $2000, which is sponsored by Artery.
The award will be decided by a people’s choice vote from visitors, with the winner to be announced after a week at a special prize announcement breakfast, along with other prizes from various sponsors to winning artists.
“This exhibition is now recognised as an established and highly anticipated event on the arts calendar in Tasmania held every two years,” said Ms Meech.
“It is a really exciting collection.
“Lots of traditional landscapes, some great lino prints, some thoughtful collage and mixed media, amazing photographs and accomplished sculptures.”
Admission to the exhibition is free and is open daily from 10am until 5pm at the Long Gallery.
Pictued above: Paul Wilson and his steel sculpture of a pelican, which was a feature of the Water Ways exhibition opening on Friday, February 5 at the Long Gallery in Salamanca. (PS)