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Red Centre artists put on a fine display

By Patrick Nelson

Janie, Shirley and Ellen Mbitjana with the skirts, bags and head scarves made during a workshop at Wilora Janie, Shirley and Ellen Mbitjana with the skirts, bags and head scarves made during a workshop at Wilora

CDU’s Red Centre artists have had a prolific month both in the gallery and in the Outback.

Three water colours and a triptych by visual arts lecturer Henry Smith and a pastel work by Certificate IV student Katja Potts are on display in an exhibition of diverse works at the Muk Muk Fine Art Gallery.

Mr Smith said the “About Alice” exhibition featured a mix of paintings, sculptures and photographs from 12 established and emerging local artists.

“It’s an exploration of their interpretations of Alice Springs and the sense of place it fosters within them,” he said.

“It shows that everyone has a different view of what Alice means to them.”

Meanwhile Printmaking and Ceramics Lecturer Suzi Lyon this week travels to Wilora, 250 km north of Alice Springs, to conduct a week-long painting workshop.

It will be the second of four excursions to the Outback community where Ms Lyon is working alongside a group of Certificate II visual arts students.

“Many of them already make art for sale, but they wanted to improve their skills and asked us to deliver the training,” Ms Lyon said.

“Three of them, Janie, Shirley and Ellen (Mbitjana) showed their aptitude for screen printing and sewing (last month).

“They used the (Japanese) Shibori dying technique to decorate bags and head scarves and make a floral pattern, which they applied to hemp skirts with screen printing.”

Ms Lyon said the focus this month would be on painting.

“We’ll have a look at colour and design, and also work on some soft sculptures that we started last month.”