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Wanganui Artists Open Studios

Shaughan, Tony, Maddy and I spent a few hours today visiting artists in their studios for the 2011 Whanganui Open Studio event. It has made me feel very privileged to be living in such a beautiful art community. I didn't get time to visit all the studios I wanted to visit but I made a pretty good dent and hope to get to the rest of them next weekend. It made me realise that next year I need to make an effort to be involved in the event again.

We started by parking outside the Museum and walking down to Gaynor Mulholland's Studio as you can see in the photo above the bright green flags are hanging outside all the studios. Gaynor had a good range of realistic paintings for sale and the lovely Marie Grice was also there also exhibiting her work.

Walking up Victoria Ave to Guyton Street we called into Sue Cooke's Studio. She has been drawing on Eggs which was interesting. Maria Martin Smith was also exhibiting there, she loved Maddy's outfit. We had to drag Maddy out of there cause she had become very fond of the slope going into Sue's studio, kids!

Next stop was Paige's Book Shop where Celia Bassett exhibits her work, thank God I had left my bag in the car cause I just love all the books in this shop!!

Skipping over Wicksteed Street we visited the notorious Rayner Brothers and we nearly ended up with a piece of Rick Rudd's pottery but thank God for Maddy not being so ruff. Tony and I had a bit of a giggle at the piece out the back, like the black swan with a cock shaped for it's head and the stuffed possum standing dressed in a dress, we both commented on that piece and said how much we would liked to buy it. Nice to catch up with Paul and Mark they are both looking really good.

As we ran down the road after dogs for Maddy to say hello, we then climbed up the stair to our wonderful Sarjeant Gallery that has an awesome exhibition 'PETER BUSH Hard on the Heels - Capturing the All Blacks' on till the 8 May, 2011. Rugby photographs by New Zealander Peter Bush who is acknowledged as the best known and most accomplished photographer of rugby in the world. For 60 years he has been documenting the All Blacks on and off the field both here and abroad. Hard on the Heels is the first exhibition to record his long association with our national game. As you can imagine Shaughan was in his element, here he is below reminiscing about RUGBY, good kiwi bloke!

Lucky I remembered that they have tours next weekend to discover what is in their basement so I booked Tony and I to go next Saturday at 11:15am. We are the only ones booked so far so if anyone else is keen give them a call.

Back to the car, even though I was hanging out for a coffee, we headed over to see Pat Cush and Lindsay Marsh. I found out both of them went to art school with my sister Vanessa, such a small world. We had a bit of a catch up and then the men wanted food so it was off to the bakery for the best sausage rolls in the world and a bottle of V for the caffeine fix I needed. As I was still stuffing my face we pulled into Christine Haber's place, dusting the crumbs off my t shirt we walked in and checked out her photography, it was cute..felt like you were in Africa. 

Back in the car and a few u turns here and there we made it to Enaj Lee's. We walked into her beautiful studio full of amazing creativity, her work really connects with me. I bought Maddy a hat and if I had the room I would have bought some of her art too! What a very talented lady!! I will try to remember and get a photo of Maddy in her hat when she wakes up. 

With just a few more stops to go we pulled up to Tom's studio with his tee pee outside, a big piece of paper to make a foot or hand print on, and a big box that asked us what would we put in an exhibition of things we couldn't live without. I wrote Shaughan but I'm sure he wouldn't stand in a pile of stuff that long for people to view. It was choice in there lots too look at and Maddy tried to make friends with the boys next door but they got shy and went back home...

For the first time in ages it was Shaughan that we waited for to get in the car NOT me, bloody awesome! I think he might miss me having the gallery and all the contact we had with the artists in town? I do.

The last studio for the day was Rachael Garland's studio which was awesome! Shaughan hung outside with her bloke, giving woman shit, while Tony and I wondered around looking at her work. I love her quirkiness, it reminds me a bit of my Aunty June. I like that Rachael told Shaughan to get me another studio....NICE!!! 

The list of artist for my next weekends adventure are Shane Hammond, Prakash Patel, Bruce Phillips, Mike Marsh, Max, Autumn and Clair McGrail, John Singleton, Aaron and Carol Gash, Andre Bronnimann, Craig Winton, Carmen Simmonds and Leonie Sharp, Leigh Anderton and Garaham Hall, and Sandy de kock. Visit for the complete list of artists in this event. 

A wonderful day was had by us all, Maddy jumped in a nice big lavender bath when we got home and is now crashed out in my bed. Shaughan has gone off to play poker and I have the suns warmth shinning on me and I'm pretty inspired to get some paint on canvas. Thank you Wanganui Artists for a lovely day x.


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