‘Accord’ – Heather Barrett

18 February – 10 April 2016

‘Accord’ – Heather Barrett

‘Hattah – a portrait’ – Karen van Cuylenburg

Castlemaine artist Heather Barrett’s new exhibition ‘Accord’ commences 18 February at Falkner Gallery. It consists of a series of works that describe her continued concern for the environment, given the realities of climate change. She uses mixed media including photography, collage, acrylics, hand-made paper, hand-dyed textiles and stitching all on stretched canvas.

She writes: “Circles are an ever-present theme. For me circles evoke feelings of old worlds, new worlds, looking through and looking beyond. Worlds without end. Perhaps too the circles within our minds: the discord as we live with such impact on the planet.

Yet circles remind me of hope – we can reinvent ourselves – for the accord we must find with nature.”

Her subtle colours and repeated shapes convey a reflective and meditative mood and the hints of colour in the text, stitching and montage provide the viewer an awareness of her optimism.

Upstairs is the exhibition ‘Hattah – a portrait’ by local artist Karen van Cuylenburg. She too is inspired by the impact of human habitation on the environment.

She describes her love of camping near wetlands observing, photographing, sketching and listening. She writes: “My recent work explores the protracted dry periods during the ‘boom and bust’ cycles of intermittent wetlands. The work depicts the landscape from above, and interprets the textures and patterns formed by decay, wind, the presence and absence of water, insects, animals and birds.

My work focuses on one of those places, Hattah National Park in northern Victoria during the drought that affected much of south-eastern Australia in the early part of this century. Prior to the drought Hattah was an intermittent wetland; its lakes fed by the Murray River. It is also a world heritage-protected national park. The long-term drought radically altered the landscape and the wildlife that inhabits it. The smaller birds quickly disappeared and, unsurprisingly, the water birds left. What remained were the parrots, cockatoos, galahs, corellas, crows, butcher birds and a few other species. My work explores Hattah and its inhabitants during this time.”


Both exhibitions, ‘Accord’ and ‘Hattah – a portrait’ are reflections about the impact of human habitation and climate change on the environment. They commence 18 February and will continue until 10 April. Both artists will be present Saturday 20 February 2–4pm.