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Art trail returns to the Far North


The Flinders Ranges – A Brush With Art returns this weekend with events scattered across 10 locations in the ancient landscape.

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The month-long event presents solo and group exhibitions, as well as workshops to help people develop their artistic skills and a pop-up art trail that leads visitors across the region.

The first exhibition, “The Flinders Revealed 19th Anniversary”, opens on Saturday at the Old Wilpena Woolshed and features 100 fine-art paintings that evoke the majesty of the Flinders Ranges.

Event manager Jess Quinn says each of the 10 major exhibitions has its own theme and brief for pieces the 160 artists can submit. Participants range from established South Australian artists to emerging talents, as well as school and kindergarten students.

Quinn says the annual event is also a great way to show off the Flinders to visitors.

“There were over 11,000 people who visited the last event and we’re expecting a bigger outcome this year,” she says.

Heather and Des Parker will open up their Trackside Studio in Peterborough for an exhibition exploring the variation of light on land and the transitional shift of reflection portrayed by tools of watercolour, pastels, oils, markers and charcoal.

The pandemic has confined Heather and Des to painting what they can see out their studio windows and the exhibition focuses on how the view changes as the day progresses.

“I love the light; it affects the things that we see. I’ve been groping to a way of painting light for a long, long time,” Heather says.

She has transitioned from painting, etching and colour graphs into the elegance of watercolour. “The light, there is a beautiful transparency and quality with watercolour that you can’t get with other paints.”

Des, on the other hand, has recreated the landscape with a mix of acrylic, pastel, various markers and charcoal.

A Brush With Art chairperson and artist Judy Elliot-Maddison is co-hosting “From Dawn ’til Dusk”, which also uses watercolours to depict the natural beauty of the environment and country landscapes, at The Old Survey Art Gallery in Bangor.

Elliot-Maddison says she often combines watercolour with metallic relief paint to create a unique effect.

“My paintings are colourful, involving quite a lot of meticulous drawing, but although recognisable, are not traditional. My depiction of the landscape and fauna usually tells a story, can be quirky and sometimes verge on being surrealistic,” Elliot-Maddison says.

See the full program of exhibitions and events here.

This is story is part of Solstice Media’s Regional Showcase series and awards program. Each week we will bring our readers regional news stories that matter as well as some inspirational tales of individuals and communities doing what country people do best – having a go.

If you have a tale to tell or know of one, get in touch at South Australian Regional Showcase.

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