There’s a focus on history at the Art Gallery of Ballarat during winter, with two very different exhibitions exploring aspects of the past.
Squatters and Savages has a strong political edge and is an exploration of contact between white settlers and Indigenous people in colonial Victoria.
Peter Waples-Crowe is an Indigenous artist who has explored the Gallery’s amazing print collection, copying images of Aboriginal people, which he then uses collage to make biting satirical comment on race relations. Megan Evans is a non-Indigenous artist who reworks nineteenth-century objects and furniture to also comment on aspects of the society that created them.
Liz Blizzard is a local artist who has drawn inspiration from the story of women in her family to create a series of paintings which pay tribute to the courage and resourcefulness of pioneer women. In researching her family history, she uncovered stories of child abduction, insanity and political agitation. In the exhibition In her footsteps, she tells the stories of two of the women in her family in a series of large, vibrant canvases.
By contrast, another Winter exhibition will celebrate and explore the landscapes and plants of central Australia. Robyn Mayo is a Tasmanian-based artist who has travelled extensively from the Top End through to the Flinders Ranges, camping and sketching the plant and animal life at each of her camp sites. Her exhibition of prints and Drawings, titled VAST, is a visual record of her travels and the geology, vegetation and history of central Australia.
Later in the season, the Gallery will be hosting From the bower, an exhibition which combines items from the personal collections of four artists, Loris Button, Deborah Klein, Louise Saxton and Carole Wilson, with artworks by each of them, many of them inspired by the objects in their collections.
And as a complete contrast Nanocosm is a ‘live’ digital exhibition by mathematician and artist Gordon Monro, who has created computer programs producing beautiful complex shapes on screen, which evolve and decay during the run of the exhibition.
Peter Waples-Crowe and Megan Evans: Squatters and Savages Saturday 27 May to Sunday 16 July
Liz Blizzard: In her footsteps Saturday 3 June to Sunday 6 August
Robyn Mayo: VAST Saturday 10 June to Sunday 13 August
Gordon Monro: Nanocosm Saturday 29 July to Sunday 10 September
From the bower: Patterns of collecting Saturday 29 July to Sunday 17 September
Some of the country’s top classical groups will be performing at the Art Gallery of Ballarat during winter, highlighted on 4th July with the popular group Seraphim Trio returning to perform some masterpieces of the classical chamber music repertoire, while on 7 August, the Australian String Quartet will play an exuberant and confident program of works by Dvorak, Benjamin Britten and Australian composer Paul Stanhope. Tickets for all concerts are available from the Gallery website artgalleryofballarat.com.au