Look what came crawling out of the Yarra last weekend - but then its Nillumbik Artists Open Studios ( its on again if you missed last weekend dont miss next weekend!) so I shouldnt be too surprised.
You've know idea who might be watching you! Even better look at the red dot. A sale always makes a fellow artist feel warm and fuzzy!
But then in the Bend of Islands you never know whats hidden in the bush. Tim Read has just joined the Artists Open Studios and being an erstwhile OAS artist as well as a nosey neighbour I had to go and have a look.
Birds nests are a common sight in the Bend - but this one's special. Its the work of two artists - Tim's nest and Jack Latti's clay eggs. One of the reasons I really miss being part of this programme is working together with the other artists in this group and the fantastic camaraderie.
From the moment you turn off Catani Boulevard, past "Mingalaba" at the entrance and down the drive there's sculpture - everywhere. You are greeted at Tim's workshop, given a map, and invited to take the "Gully Walk". As a Bend of Islands resident it seems familiar , a lovely winding path through the bush to the river - but its different here, around every corner, on posts, in the trees, on the ground there's a sculpture. Lots of surprises!
Then a campfire to sit by and admire the river and a cuppa at the house.
Tim is a prolific artist and I just grabbed a tiny(and I mean tiny) number of photos on the run. You absolutely have to visit!
After visiting the newest artist on your way back you can visit some of the original members of the Open Studios programme - painters and printers, Syd Tunn and Ona Henderson at the Creek House studios (huge and lots and lots to see) in Henley Road.
Just up the road, a very pretty drive through Christmas Hills takes you on to Veronica Holland and you wont be able to leave her without the biggest smile on your face!
Why you ask, am I devoting so much of my blog space to other people in the Artists Open Studios? Sentiment to some extent, I loved being part of the programme and only left because of family committments. Its a great programme. For the visitor its a chance to meet many talented people in their workspace and see the process involved in producing many different kinds of art including ceramics, textiles, glass, sculpture, printing and painting. For the artist, often working in relative solitude, its a great opportunity to show and discuss their work.
Its your chance to become an art collector too - there is work for sale in all price ranges so you can afford to give a little piece of original art for Christmas presents or indulge in something more for your own house or garden. Many artists have very reasonable greeting cards, often a little piece of original art in themselves!
Oh and dont forget to check my last blog to see what my yarnbombing partner in crime mixed media artist Margaret Summerton is up to and you must visit her Hurstbridge studio!
Visit http://artistopenstudios.com.au/ for maps and information about these and all the other amazing artists in this programme!