Matilda St Gallery to launch 'Group Dynamics' exhibition featuring five local artists

The latest exhibition at the Matilda St Gallery which is due to open to the public from Saturday is a veritable visual feast.

Unlike metropolitan artists often caught up in the hype and commercial value of artistic trends, the ones featured in this group show each possess a distinctly unique approach and aesthetic to their art.

The five disparate artists all knew each other through the Valley’s artist community but Freya Paton was the lynchpin of the collective, drawing them together for this exhibition, entitled ‘Group Dynamics’.

Freya Paton is a textile artisan, and her more-than-20 pieces included in this exhibition display a mastery of felting, wirework, beadwork and embroidery, which need to be seen to be believed.

Denise Delaney was an art teacher for many years, and is a true Renaissance woman, working within multiple mediums, including writing short stories.

“I love textiles and texture...ceramics too,” Denise said.

“I’m as much a potter as I am anything else.”

For this show she has included 9 new paintings and 12 new ceramic pieces—the culmination of 6 months of focus.

Her painting style takes inspiration from the ‘colour field’ movement of art, and sits broadly within abstract expressionism, evoking moods through texture and colour palettes.

“Some of the works I’ve spent a lot of time on,” Denise said

“I make art for the pure pleasure of doing it.”

Sara Wade has been developing her aesthetic over many years, and her abstract landscapes recall arboreal motifs.

“I love trees. I do a lot of trees. They keep coming back to haunt me,” Sara said.

Her series of eight paintings included in this exhibition are incredibly stylised, making use of repeat design elements and a mouth-watering colour palette.

Many are inspired by the view from her own back door.

While Eugene Martini creates fascinating partially 3-dimensional collages from objects he has found while riding his bike and going beach fossicking.

Eugene heralds Australian naturalist Harry Butler as his hero and his works have a strong foundation in environmental conservation.

“I’ve always loved nature, since I was a toddler,” Eugene said.

He has included in this exhibition intricately beaded frogs, and ‘bone-works’ made from roadkill which he hopes will encourage people to reflect on the plight of our native fauna.

The beads in his frog-scapes are time-consumingly glued on one-by-one—a process which Eugene says is ‘meditative’.

He has previously exhibited his work in the Stringer gallery in Nambucca Heads, but is excited about this exhibition which he says is his first major show.

Virginia Whitehead comes to the world of art from a theatrical standpoint.

Once a costume designer, she finds her inspiration in fabrics, venetian-inspired masks, and all that glitters.

Her works are incredibly layered canvases and sculptures, created from op shop finds.

“You start looking at things, and not seeing junk but an artwork.”

Virginia Whitehead

One of her dazzling pieces for the exhibition is called ‘Meraki’ which loosely translates from the Greek to ‘including a piece of your soul in your work’—something that is self-evident when viewing her collection.

The exhibition runs from Saturday, September 23 to October 21, with the official opening at 2pm on Saturday, September 30.

‘Group Dynamics’ promises to appeal to a variety of art lovers and buyers.