Mixing it with Mary Valley artists
ART lovers will be able to enjoy some of the best works from two Mary Valley artists when they hold a joint exhibition at the Gympie Regional Gallery this month.
"Mixing it" brings the pastel works of Narelle Webber to the gallery in the company of abstract artist Jean McAuley who prefers to work with acrylics.
The women are very excited about the collaboration, which kicked off with a private viewing at Narelle's Lagoon Pocket home on January 10.
It will be officially opened in Gallery 3 at the Gympie Regional Gallery in Nash Street on January 30, from 1pm, with Senator Ian Macdonald as guest speaker.
Jean was born in 1944 and says that as a student she was always top of the class in art. She did not have the chance to study art formally until living in Brisbane in 1976 where she attended the Queensland College of Art at Seven Hills for one night a week for most of that year.
Life went on its course, and at 45, she was widowed. She was living at Anakie in the Central Highlands and went back to work putting painting "on hold" again.
In 2003, she sold her house at Anakie and moved to the Gympie area, joining the Imbil Village Artists and discovering her love of acrylics.
She has since also joined the Gympie Friends of the Gallery and spends most Tuesday mornings with fellow artists for lessons and a get-together.
"I think I have a natural flair for abstract painting and enjoy it immensely," she said.
That passion has paid off, with the artist winning the Abstract Award at the Mary Valley Art Festival in 2006 and again in 2007.
By contrast, Narelle Webber uses the abundant natural countryside at Lagoon Pocket as her inspiration, preferring pastels to render these images to paper.
She delights in painting flowers, the landscape, and what she claims is her first love -- animals large and small.
This has led to commissions for animal portraits from local farmers and has added an exciting and stimulating depth to her work.
Narelle came to the Lagoon Pocket area when she and husband Geoff made the move to retire from Brisbane.
Their new home on three acres includes a dedicated studio which takes advantage of 270-degree views and prevailing breezes.
Narelle also paints weekly with the Imbil Village Artists and is an active member of the Gympie Friends of the Gallery.
Seven years ago, she began the Painters @ Mudgee plein air painting week in country New South Wales. The popular artist event is still going, and while initially for pastel artists, it is now open to artists painting in all mediums.
"Mixing it" can be viewed in Gallery 3 at the Gympie Regional Gallery from January 27-February 20.
ARTISTS ON SHOW: Narelle Webber (left) and Jean Macauley have collaborated to present a joint exhibition called "Mixing it" at the Gympie Regional Gallery.
CASUAL SCENE: Jean McAuley's distinct style can be seen in this painting.
RESTFUL: Narelle Webber draws inspiration from the local landscape.
'Mixing it' joint exhibition
Gympie Regional Gallery
27 January - 20 February 2010
Gympie Regional Gallery, Gympie
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