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11 June, 2021

Free art, good for soul

THERE are few things more uplifting than regular free visits to the Mackay Regional Council’s Artspace art gallery.

Gallery Director, Tracey Heathwood presents 16 different exhibitions to the greater Mackay community every year.

“Sometimes we have several exhibitions on at once in our four exhibition spaces,” Tracey smiled, with well-deserved pride and satisfaction.

“Each exhibition runs for eight to 12 weeks, plus Artspace gallery staff also develop our own exhibitions from our own art collection.

“Artspace also connects with local artists such as Donna Maree Robinson and composer David Pyke, who have created their combined audio-visual display on show at the moment called Continuum.

“Sometimes Artspace gallery hosts touring gallery exhibitions like the current Tamworth Textile Triennial called Tension(s) 2020, which showcases the best textile art from across the country, with participating artists from all Australian states.”

This includes Georgia Chapman’s magnificently embroided curtain, where Georgia has collected and photographed foliage from her small patch of nature and from her much-loved maple tree, passed down from her grandparents.

“My work is larger than life, bigger than my natural space,” Georgia explained.

“I want the piece to be viewed from afar and, at the same time, to invite a more intimate response by drawing the viewer closer, to discover the painted details.

“I set out to create a multi-layered piece that enhances the viewer experience and creates curiosity about what they are looking at. “Are the images photographic or drawn? “Painted or printed ? “What is real (photographic), and what has been drawn/painted/reconstructed?”

“I rediscovered textiles that I had collected and treasured and fragments of my drawings and patterns. “Starting with images that triggered memories, I juxtaposed these with unexpected surfaces.”

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