Restoring landscapes across the Mount Alexander Region

Ecology artworks at Falkner Gallery until 25 March 2018

Posted on 5 February, 2018 by Tanya Loos

Two beautiful exhibitions by talented local artists are on now at the Falkner Gallery in Castlemaine: Margaret Cromb showing ‘Bushland’ and Greg Somerville showing ‘…stitched to everything…- musings of an errant ecologist.’

Margaret is one of Connecting Country’s most avid bird survey volunteers and we are really delighted that Margaret is generously donating 50% of the net proceeds of her exhibition sales to Connecting Country! Thanks Margaret – you are already so generous with your time!

Margaret’s ‘Bushland’ exhbition is a series of  watercolours and woodcuts that describe the natural environment of Central Victoria. Margaret writes: ‘I consider myself to be especially blessed to live in an area surrounded by extensive forests and I continue to enjoy exploring them and becoming more familiar with the birds and animals which inhabit them. I have been involved over many years with Landcare especially in the Casey/ Cardinia area where I came from. More recently I have become involved with Connecting Country and its bird-monitoring program. Spending time in the bush looking for birds and being immersed in the environment is a great joy to me. I am impressed with Connecting Country and its focus on restoring natural habitat by educating and supporting landowners. So it is a pleasure to be able to donate to its activities through this exhibition.’

The works depict bushland scenes, individual trees and wildflowers, often including local birds. Margaret’s characteristic layering of colour washes can be seen in her representational portrayals of the local environment, about which she is so passionate.

Upstairs, Greg Somerville captures the local environment with different media – textiles and photography – but with similarly powerful effects. His training and early work as a biologist has led him to use the insights of science, especially ecology and Chaos Theory, in his artistic output. Greg writes:‘The imagery I utilise is grounded in the patterns, textures and minutiae of the bioregion in which I live. They are also informed by my knowledge of biological structures, the energies and relationships found in ecosystems, within the micro and macroscopic….The patterns of water drops on leaves, the way lichen spreads on sandstone or the manner in which trees co-inhabit the landscape is every bit as revelatory as the great texts, painting or musical composition.’

His abstracted quilted works and his photographs use detailed patterns, textures and layers to suggest the complexities and subtleties of nature.

Both exhibitions are on now and continue until 25 March 2018, with 50% of the net proceeds from Margaret’s work being donated to support Connecting Country.

Please note Falkner Gallery’s revised hours for 2018: Wed 1-5, Thurs–Sat 11-5 and Sunday by appointment. The gallery is at 35 Templeton St, Castlemaine.

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