Right across the Eurobodalla Shire and beyond, River of Art is attracting huge interest and showcasing our region’s cultural delights.
The festival kicked off in style last weekend with a diverse set of events, starting with a launch in Bodalla with performances by the Djaadjawan Dancers, Clive Dorien and Barny Barnbrook – followed by a lively after party in Moruya.
On Saturday night, the Festival Poetry Slam proved as popular as ever. Then on Sunday, a record audience was entranced by Flights of Fancy - this year’s annual Wearable Art fashion extravaganza, organised by the Eurobodalla Fibre and Textile Artists Group. The crowd, many of whom were visitors, marveled at the 100 dazzling costumes on parade.
River of Art committee member Lynne Griffiths said the festival had many more must-see attractions to dive into, with numerous activities on offer every day this week. Check the program on our website under What’s On to see where to go.
Art on Parade is open all week from Batemans Bay to Bermagui – along with many artist’s studios. There’s still time to book for several tours and workshops: the Mogendoura Farm Talk on May 26, Pastel on Canvas in Batemans Bay on May 25, and the Walbanga Minga Dungaarn walking and learning experience on May 27.
And there’s good news for everyone who missed the Creators Bazaar last Saturday, which we had to cancel due to heavy rain. The Bazaar is back at the riverside markets in Moruya this Saturday, May 27. Don’t miss this opportunity to purchase local work straight from the maker, buy tasty treats, picnic and be entertained by live performers.
Festival highlights - during the week:
- In Bodalla on May 25, we have Oh My God, I’ve Been Kidnapped and I Hate What I’m Wearing – an hilarious all-singing, all-dancing theatrical crowd pleaser.
- Liquid Art is on from May20-28 in Batemans Bay – when young performers, edgy storytellers and dancers take over the esplanade.
What’s on around Narooma district:
- Visit the Narooma Woodies in Bodalla, and head to the Downward Dog Café to enjoy live music along with a multi-media exhibition including works by Megan Small and Lois Selby. The Artists Nest will be open throughout the festival, while Blue Earth’s kitchen garden is part of this year’s Art of Gardening trail.
- In mid-town Narooma, check out Shanna Provost’s mixed media exhibition at the Whale Motor Inn. Drop into an exhibition of diverse mosaic works by artists from the Artful 9 group at Eurobodalla Tiles and Bathrooms, and visit Bound to Earth Café to see Sally Veer’s studio art, textiles and repurposed garments.
- Anne Colquitt presents her bespoke millinery creations at Hatsavvy, as well as workshops on how to block a felt shape into a fashionable hat to wear through the cooler winter months.
- An astonishing exhibition of textiles and costuming by Sue Barford and Marian Webb will be on display at the Tara Motel.
- The Narooma Camera Club Exhibition at the Narooma Club showcases superb photographs depicting local life and landscapes.
- Just south of Narooma in Tilba, Cheryl Davison and Matheiu Lartigau will have their works on display at Neck of the Woods Café, while the Apma Creations Aboriginal Art Gallery will showcase Merryn Apma’s desert inspired paintings.
- You can also visit the Narooma Woodies in Bodalla, and head to the Downward Dog Café to enjoy live music along with a multi-media exhibition including works by Megan Small and Lois Selby. The Artists Nest will be open throughout the festival, while Blue Earth’s kitchen garden is part of this year’s Art of Gardening trail.
This weekend – don’t miss:
- The Australian National Busking Championships hits Narooma on Saturday 27 May. Acclaimed classical crossover band, The String Family, will be performing several times during the event.
- At Four Winds – an intimate string concert by the Aurelia Quartet, performing glorious chamber music by Haydn and Schumann in the Windsong Pavilion just south of Bermagui on 27 May.
- Also on Saturday - stand-up comedy with Kirsty Webeck, one of Australia’s hottest new comedians performing live at South tribe in Batemans.
- Another classical performance in Batehaven on 28 May by The Streeton Trio – described by Musica Viva as ‘Australia’s most internationally successful piano trio.
- To celebrate the festival finale, River of Art invites everyone to join us for a family bush dance in Moruya on 28 May. Renowned Kameruka Bush Orchestra will perform and lead the dancing.
River of Art 2017 Art Prize
The winner and finalists in the highly esteemed River of Art 2017 Art Prize exhibition were announced Monday night at the opening ceremony at the SoArt Gallery in Narooma.
Janet Jones, one of the three judges along with Ross Cameron and last year’s winner Keedah Throssel, said that the standard of works this year had been exceptional, making the judging task very difficult.
Mogo artist Ken Taber was awarded the prize this year for his acrylic work ‘Waterfall’.
Very highly commended went to Indira Carmichael for “Let me show you the man’’ – for her pencil on paper creation. Natasha Kalenjuk and Catherine Speed each received judges’ commendations for their respective works – ‘Eastern Spinebill’ (a watercolour) and ‘Little Red’ (acrylic on board).
Fifty works were received this year – 26 of which are on exhibit at the SoArt Gallery up until 30 May. The exhibition showcases artists from Ulladulla to the Victorian border.
Artworks this year range across various media including oil and acrylic paintings, digital photography, collages, textiles, pastels and mosaics.
Ken Taber is a self-taught artist who paints in both acrylics and oils. His preferred subjects are usually water scenes, misty swamps, tidal backwaters, beach scenes and his later work, semi-abstract acrylics of water birds in their environment. Ken’s paintings are hung in collections both in Australia and around the world. Ken’s Studio Gallery in Mogo is open this coming weekend as part of River of Art – as is his beautiful and tranquil garden, which is reminiscent of Monet’s famous gardens – a joy to wander through - open 27 and 28 May.