In 2013 I met Julie Chitty at the Belconnen Arts Centre, when holding a stall full of poppy works at the Twilight Markets.
Julie was holding a stall to promote the wares of Barton Estate, and we got chatting about her love of poppies and the vineyard.
Bob and Julie had been wanting to find an artist who they felt would fit well with their business, and not long after I was invited to become the Artist in Residence.
Fast forward a little, I have had the pleasure of showcasing various works at the Cellar Door, plus also been involved in various events such as Wine, Roses and all that Jazz, and various events held in association with Canberra Wines.
During these years, I have been creating works inspired by the Vineyard. Some works have been inspired by Marty, the resident Dalmatian, some by the beautiful surrounds others more by the events that have occurred during these years.
This exhibition is the first time I have shown a body of works which have been created entirely inspired by Barton Estate Wines.
I have a range from works created from 2017 to current year, and it is really interesting now to look and see my various stages during these few years.
Barton Estate Wines is an easy 20 minute drive out of Canberra heading towards Murrumbatemen.
Puppy patrol – Marty assesses the grounds
a visitor when plein air sketching
Over the last few years, I have begun to enjoy plein air sketching in the vines, a real treat for me now I have the time to enjoy the outdoors as my family grows older.
I remember in 2018, actually one of the first times I had ever enjoyed plein air drawing, I was deep in thought sketching away and suddenly had an acute awareness of being watched. Nobody was around, just me in the vines, so I thought. Then some further rustling of grass (and vines) and I suddenly realised I had a visitor, an echidna, who was just going about doing his own thing. I was so excited, as it had been years since I’d seen one and stopped everything to watch and grab a sketch or two.
I think this moment will stay with me forever, what a perfect combination of a day of drawing and my love of animals.
This echidna is the inspiration for two of my works in the exhibition which is currently on show now at Barton Estate.
Seven years is a lot of time and works to put into one blog post!
It has been quite a journey, this exhibition has been coming for quite a few years now, been rescheduled a few times due to life happening for both Barton Estate and I, however we are pleased to finally be celebrating finally getting there together!
Join me in my next few posts where I share insights into more works included in the exhibition, which runs until November 29 at Barton Estate. Due to current restrictions, visitors to see the Exhibition are required to book in advance. The Cellar Door is open weekends or weekdays by appointment only.
As always for any enquiries please do not hesitate to email me on email@example.com or leave a comment below.