2023 Artfest Exhibition
Blue Mountains Artfest has received overwhelming support in our milestone year, with over 100 artists and makers participating.
2023 PRIZE WINNERS
Thanks to Nina Stromqvist, Curatorial Programs Manager at Penrith Regional Gallery for serving as independent judge for this 40th Anniversary exhibition
2D Artwork Prize
Rebecca Waterstone ‘Blue #2 & Field #2’
2D Highly Commended
Paul Gorjan ‘Coogee Units’
3D Artwork Prize
3D Highly Commended
Sharron Mountain ‘Breaking the Line’
Photography, Highly Commended
2023 saw YouthArt (formally known as Kids Art) open to children from Kindergarten right through to Year 12.
Students from across the Blue Mountains were invited to submit an artwork that they created – and we were pleased to see so many of last year’s young artists returning to submit new art.
Over 50 artworks, ranging from painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, and mixed media were exhibited across the Artfest weekend.
|I'm a resident of Wentworth Falls and have been working in creative fields all my life. It's been a joy to recently have time to engage more fully with my first loves - painting & drawing.
|Katrina aims to capture the stillness of the moment and the play of light on a single point in time, through subtle changes in tone. Painting on Gnurra and Cammeraygal lands, she predominantly uses water mixable oils on canvas or wood panel.
|I have only been painting for four years, not knowing I could. I use recycled canvases, or boards, or whatever I can find... the works done by previous artists give my work extra soul. I have had three solo exhibitions in my short career and a few group shows. I paint daily.
|I have always appreciated art, but it was not till my 30's that I started to teach myself to draw. I have occasionally attended art classes and am inspired by nature to do art works. Art is a continuous journey for me and something I find myself learning more and more about.
|I'm Emma, an Avian and Exotics Nurse and keen pet and wildlife artist working mainly in pastels, graphite and coloured pencil. I love creating works capturing the diverse nature of each individual animal.
|I am an artist who loves to explore our natural surrounds. I am also a Transpersonal Art Therapist & Reiki Master. So my inspiration is Pachamama herself. I'm drawn to capturing scenes and places that resonate with me the most as this infuses my love for the Earth through my passion for creativity.
|Lorraine grew up in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney and moved to the Blue Mountains over 30 years ago where she developed a great love for plants and flowers in all their intricate beauty. One of her favourite things is drawing the native plants which she sees every day in the bush around her home.
|Linda Callaghan is an award winning artist known for her unique style and attention to detail. Painting a diverse range of subjects, including landscapes, animals and more, Linda's works have been exhibited in numerous galleries and are owned by collectors worldwide.
|I am a local very successful abstract modern artist. So far just sold personally online. I have sold locally to WA to America and England.
|I am an Artist, Interior Designer and Surface Pattern creator. I am passionate about all things in nature inspired by our landscapes. My first time entering into the Blue Mountains Artfest & I want to be able to give back and raise money for Blue Mountains public school in 2023.
|Sandra Coleman is an art educator with a degree in Visual Arts and has completed numerous intensive courses at the National Art School in Sydney. Sandra has had several joint exhibitions in the Blue Mountains, Sydney and Canberra.
|I am a retired Artist but continue to paint from my home where I enjoy creating artwork which might make someone happy or even touch their soul.
|Samantha Lee Curran
|Samantha Lee Curran is a poet, writer, and artist living on Dharug and Gundungurra land. She is the author of the poetry collection 'exposure to existence' (Alien Buddha Press, 2023) and her work has been published in several online and in print literary magazines.
|Alan Daniel and his wife Jan moved to the mountains in 2015. Drawn to the lifestyle, the people, the light, and the colour, it would now be unimaginable to live anywhere else. The mountains are home.
|Following studies at the National Art School, Julian Ashtons and University of NSW School of Art and Design with a Masters in Art, I have been a full time artist and occasional tutor. I have been awarded a number of Australian and International residencies. My work focuses on landscape.
|Jennie Deane is a local Blue Mountains Artist / Illustrator. Her most recent body of work and book, “LOOKOUT”, encapsulates her exploration and rediscovery of the natural landscape of the Blue Mountains from the time of the pandemic lockdowns.
|Is Don, is good.
|Based in Western Sydney and Blue Mountains, specialising in captivating a combination of watercolour and ink. Drawing on inspiration from our local and natural environment, evoking a sense of wonder and connection to nature.
|Grant Eyre is a Blue Mountains artist working across most mediums. He has won several First prizes in local Art Shows and enjoys landscape painting and drawing. He is currently a tutor at Springwood Community Arts Centre, where he teaches drawing and watercolour painting .
|Frances is a Blue mountains artist that has been painting landscapes for some years, focusing on trees and light. Oil paint is her preferred medium as well as sketching using gouache. Frances has exhibited extensively and has been a finalist in art prizes like the Paddington art prize.
|Born in Dublin and now a local Blue Mountain resident, Finnbarr Fetherston is an abstract artist inspired by the native flora.
|My art comes from a place of juggling motherhood, working and carrying the mental load. No matter what I paint, the stories behind them are always about showing women their strengths and reminding them to make time for stillness.
|Hayden Fryer is a Blue Mountains based illustrator, writer and comicbook creator, over the last 20 years his uniquely stylised illustrative and sequential works have been exhibited and seen in publications all around the world.
|Three abstract paintings and, for the craft room, A to Z high quality keyrings, skull keyrings and bookmarks.
|I have a strong interest in the landscapes and the natural water features of our area. I have been influenced by the work of Len Hend, an Australian landscape artist.
|Paul is an amateur artist living in the Blue Mountains. He has been a twice winner of the Blackheath Art Prize and commended in competitions at Bowral Art Gallery and Blue Mountains Art Prize. He has also been a finalist in numerous art competitions around Australia.
|Emerging Australian Artist born in Uruguay from Italian Heritage. I am following in the footsteps of my dear mother and her passion for creating artworks in oil and beyond.
|Erin Hall is a mosaic artist who is inspired by nature and loves the texture of natural materials like slate. Practicing in this medium for over 10 years and now teaches classes for young budding Mosiac artists from Springwood Community Arts Centre.
|John is an enthusiastic artist based in the inner west of Sydney. He takes inspiration from his upbringing in Griffith, New South Wales and his later connection to Wentworth Falls in the Blue Mountains for his works.
|A constant theme in my work is the idea of transience. I borrow from the language and iconography of Dutch 17th Century still life painting. Still life contrasts with our lives today which are dynamic, moving and constantly shifting, so there is definitely a strange irony in my work. Hauntingly beautiful, they contemplate space, time and the fragility of the human condition.My paintings have been finalists in many art prizes including The Kilgour Prize, Mosman Art Prize, EMSLA Still Life Awards and the North Sydney Art Prize, winning the Award for Painting in 2017.
|I'm an international multi media local artist. I create unique, individual and commission works that inspire the imagination. I run workshops at my gallery in Sun Valley, which opens monthly.
|I pursued a love of watercolour painting four years ago after retiring from teaching. I have achieved success in local exhibitions recently. I enjoy painting landscapes, flora and fauna.
|I am a landscape painter based here in Wentworth Falls. After completing a bachelor of landscape painting at COFA, UNSW, I spent many years living and exhibiting abroad. I work in oils on canvas and focus on capturing light movement and energy in nature.
|Kathryn's career in the arts spans over 50 years, as an art teacher and practising artist. She has exhibited extensively in Victoria, and has recently relocated to Blackheath. She was a finalist in the 2023 Mt. Eyre art prize, and has been exhibiting with the Blackheath Art awards for over 3 years.
|My work is about the distortion of reality. I am attempting to create a timeless art removed from the specificity of the contemporary world. Searching for an art that doesn't need context to be of value.
|Christine Hyde is a contemporary painter and tutor.
|I have been painting and exhibiting for several decades, most recently here in the Blue Mountains. The current body of work is concerned with the place of the porcelain figurine in the Western cultural canon.
|Irina Iris is an artist working in an illustrative style. Born in Belarus, live in AU since 2008. Favourite topics : everything which is connected with nature.
|With a background in graphic art and advertising I pursue creative and colourful works of art. Looking to the natural world around me inspires colour and transitions of light in my pieces. Just like the colour of the sky, it's where the rainbow lives in my work.
|My love of creating started from the moment I picked up a pencil at a very young age. There are many things that influence and will continue to inspire me throughout my creative journey. Places lived, visited, art movement, especially impressionism, enabling me to express my thoughts and feelings in my artwork. I enjoy the process of experimentation, using different media and a variety of subjects in my paintings and drawings. Shape, Texture and Colour are very much a part of my art practice, motivating me to continue to Live a Colourful Life.
|My background is in graphic illustration and copywriting. In recent years I have taken a different path...one into mixed media. The themes I enjoy painting are wildlife, portraiture, landscape and anything else that takes my fancy!
|Kerry-Anne Knibbs is an Australian artist working from her studio in the Blue Mountains. Studied Fine Arts and was chosen for a Selective Art College for Commercial Art and Professional Illustration. Teaches private art classes.
|The primary subjects of my work are portraiture and nature.
|Leonarda Kova_i_ is a photographic artist, historian, tutor, lecturer and curator based in Katoomba. She specialises in landscapes, nature scenes, flora, semi-abstract motifs and architecture. She has had numerous solo and group exhibitions in Australia and Croatia.
|A recent workplace injury severely restricted my activities and eventually led to the rediscovery of the healing and expressive power of visual arts. These works are born from that experience.
|I started painting 15 years ago. I became really serious about it only 3 years ago. I am inspired by the beauty of the Blue Mountains and I try to paint it.
|Kerrie Lander is a Blue Mountains local with a deep appreciation of the natural environment. Botanical art is a personal way to honour the beauty that surrounds us.
|David Landgrebe has reignited his love of oil painting in the last 3 years since moving to Wentworth Falls in the Blue Mountains. From a creative background in sign writing and landscaping, he now spends as much time as he can enjoying the process of painting the landscape he inhabits.
|Nicole Landgrebe has been living in the Blue Mountains for four years now, where her photography took a different path from in Sydney as an award winning Newborn Photographer. Intricate leaves and flowers are delicately photographed and transformed into beautiful fine art.
|I am an emerging artist, about to graduate from Nepean TAFE's new art degree. I prefer experimental drawing and impasto oil painting, and specialise in figurative, landscape and portraiture subjects.
|Sabine Le Tourneau
|These works are counter balancing the current psycho-anxiety of our era to offer simple beauty and environmental respect.
|Sue enjoys every day living in nature with a camera in hand. Sue likes to take photos alone and enjoys the whole process from being at one with the subject to printing the images at home. It is reward enough to be creative, immersed in the wonder and awe of the earth.
|Jonathan Litchfield is an emerging photographer presently living and working on Gundungarra country in Hampton on the edge of the Blue Mountains National Park. Litchfield's interest in photography is intertwined with his interest in travel, both of which are an exploration of the natural world.
|Clem Macarthur is a local high school student who enjoys art making of all forms.
|Desiree Martin is a contemporary artist, who paints artworks with abstracted natural themes. She loves to balance soft focussed areas with interesting patterns, organic shapes and lines. Desiree's artworks are colourful and dream-like, pictorially sharing stories with her audience.
|Geoff Matthews is a Blue Mountains artist who mostly engages with the colours, textures and lines of the Australian landscape.
|I bought my first tube of paint in Springwood, aged 12; at 16 I went to study at the National Art School then Alexander Mackie College & later Sydney College of the Arts. While working as a museum director, curator & gallerist I maintained an active studio practice & have exhibited regularly.
|Chrysovalantou is inspired by her travels throughout Australia & by the magical watercolour medium. Watercolour's transparency, fluidity & technique provides an exciting partnership between painter, water & pigment, that she hopes translates to her viewer.
|I started off doing watercolours, then I did a course on portraiture after which I moved to oils and acrylics. Lately I have been creating abstracts in oils and acrylics.
|Stephen McLearie is a builder by trade who has lived in the Blue Mountains since 2007. He enjoys doing making art and furniture in his spare time and would like to do it more often in the near future.
|Living in the Blue Mountains for over 35 years has given me daily inspiration for my life and artwork. Recently retired, I am enjoying learning and practicing various art forms, with particular interest in drawing and printmaking.
|Axel “Art Machine” Moline
|More ad man than art man.
|With a name like mine (David Moore) being identical with one of Australia's most eminent photographers, you could understand my reluctance to pursue a career in photography. That was my excuse anyway! I'm 69 now, and I have only entered a photographic competition once, in far off Japan, where I lucked out by winning the Special Prize in the first ever Japan Times Photo Contest in 2004, awarded by Ryutaro Hashimoto, then Prime Minister of Japan. I realised that I wanted to use photography as a vehicle to express the Nature of Beauty. Since then, I've dedicated my efforts towards producing images that could show all of us something of the Beauty of Nature.
|Trudie Ann Moore
|I've enjoyed creating paintings using coloured natural beeswax since 2007. Art has been an integral part of my life for 50 years.
|I am best known for my endangered animal series—dramatic portrait-like portrayals in charcoal and watercolour that aim to convey the pathos of species whose existence is threatened. I search to find and convey emotion in all of my work. This urgency to reverse the impacts we have had on the environment drives much of my work at the moment. Having been published in several international publications, I feel hopeful that I am spreading the message to a wide audience.
|Deb Morrison has lived in the Blue Mountains for many years and is influenced by the beautiful natural environment. She is a painter and textile artist with a strong interest in colour and patterns and birds often feature in the artworks.
|My ceramic practice is an exploration of the intersection between the transient beauty of nature and the enduring medium of clay. The delicate interplay of light, shadow, and form are played out on the surface of my form.
|Lawrence J Odell
|Born 1935. Been painting for 48 years at Newport and Katoomba.
|Based in Springwood, Blue Mountains, Felicity Olley uses the mediums of acrylic, watercolour and pencil to explore the natural world around her. Her focus is on the play of light and shadow, and its interaction with differing textures. Currently, her artworks reveal an obsession with clouds.
|I have a very expressive and playful approach to my paintings, combining mark making, patterning and gestural application of colour. Mindfulness is the foundation of my practice with each artwork evolving as a visceral and therapeutic embodiment of my connection to the Blue Mountains.
|Raewyn Proctor is a former Blue Mountains resident who now lives in the Illawarra. These two paintings reflect thoughts and feelings regarding the tumultuous nature of the current world.
|I am a Visual Artist living in Sydney. I paint mostly in acrylic and mixed media in a contemporary style. My inspiration comes from our unique Australian bush and landscape.
|I have been using art for my own healing journey to express myself and foster deeper understanding of myself for many years. I work with all kinds of materials and like to explore and mix mediums and test my abilities. I like hands on textures, particularly as it helps me to ground in the moment.
|Exploring the emotional and dark side of beauty through watercolour with a modern twist. I don't aim to please but to make people feel.
|Rosie has lived in the Blue Mountains her whole life and is now raising her own family here as a busy mum of 4. She enjoys photographing a range of subjects and with that, the challenge to capture the essence of a subject within a photo.
|Born a maker, Macgregor Ross started full-time making in the early 90's, exhibiting at inner Sydney markets, festivals and independent galleries. In the late 90's he moved to Lithgow and started Ironfest.
|I have been painting since childhood, mainly abstract. I am a very deep thinker and I put my philosophy in my paintings.
|Dominic Santangelo is motivated by the therapeutic nature of the photographic process, and as a way to connect creatively with nature and people. He is a hybrid photographer often combining film and digital techniques to experiment with different photographic styles and genres.
|David J Santleben
|As means to reacquire focus and purpose this artist took up the brush...A deliberate choice was the Nieve Style. Working on the advice of Degass, as quoted by Cressida Campbell: I only painted the things I love! Yachting!
|I have been painting watercolour since the beginning of Covid. Initially animals and flowers. Now I have developed into landscape. Looking at the juxtaposition of old and new in nature.
|Mandy Schone-Salter is an interdisciplinary artist based in the Blue Mountains of Australia. She works across various mediums, including mural art and community art. Operating under the pseudonym MAN.DE, she has engaged in street art projects.
|Garry Sims is a Katoomba resident and has lived in the Blue Mountains since the early 1980s, including nearly ten years in Wentworth Falls. Garry believes that photography is “drawing with light” and enjoys capturing the many beautiful features of the Blue Mountains and Tasmania.
|Betty is a naive artist painting with acrylic paints on canvas. She depicts people in convivial situations, often in Blue Mountains locations, all whilst acknowledging the everchanging flora and birdlife.
|I have lived in the Blue Mountains 27 years after moving from South Australia. I work in all mediums and enjoy learning how to use new ones. The artwork ‘Ophelia’ I have submitted for Artfest is all my own. I created the armature 7 years ago from polystyrene broccoli boxes, 3 years ago I covered it with ‘paper mâché clay’ and it has now, after around 80 hours, found its final form as a mosaic artwork. She was modelled on my Guide Dog pup when I was training her and therefore her name had to be ‘Ophelia’, meaning ‘aid and help’ and representing beauty.
|Michael Stone's photography and writing has been published in books and magazines worldwide, including The Australian, Le Monde France, Geo Asia as well as shown on ABC TV and exhibited in various Galleries including Sydney Museum, TAP Gallery and Blue Mountains Cultural Centre.
|I am a Wentworth Falls artist working with different mediums.
|Being a singer, pianist and cellist I have always tried to immerse myself in the creative arts. I was given a box of soft pastels by a friend and have so enjoyed the vibrancy of colour that can be swept across the page.
|My name is Aly Thomson, what begun as a love of taking photographs has developed into a unique passion winning many awards and featuring in magazines. My photographs capture the hidden beauty often overlooked in life. By repurposing old frames I create an affordable work of art for all to enjoy.
|Steve is a watercolourist, specialising in Australian birds. He undertakes extensive field trips to gather reference material for his detailed, illustrative paintings. His work has been published in books and magazines.
|I came to painting relatively recently. For the last five years I have principally worked in acrylics, producing still life works mostly in the chiaroscuro tradition where light and dark both reveal the subject.
|Taught in humanities but have done numerous courses in all aspects of art throughout the last 50 years in workshops, where I have maintained my interest in animals and flowers in more detailed realism over 3 mediums. I have ventured further with landscapes, and yet to segue into a looser style.
|Carley Anne Walsh is an award winning artist based in the Blue Mountains. A finalist in the Holmes Art Prize for realistic bird art 2023 and best in show at Bathurst Royal. One of Australia's leading pet portrait artists.
|I engage in multidisciplinary creative practice, alongside curating and producing experimental contemporary art projects for Modern Art Projects Blue Mountains. My paintings consist of restrained, minimal fields of colour.
|I am a member of the society of mountain artists and paint regularly with them. I also give painting instructions to fellow members. I like to paint all types of transport, architecture and street scenes and city scapes.
|Before moving to Australia in 2009, James was a commercial artist in New York. His commercial artworks have been sold in over 180 countries. He works in many media, but especially enjoys painting, drawing and making jewellery.