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  • Your Hunter Valley Magazine

Enjoy a Weekend of Art & Gourmet Food

Morpeth Gallery will host the annual Festival of Two Palettes over the weekend of 20 and 21 March.


With 13 artists in residence over the weekend, most painting at their easels it’s the perfect opportunity not

just to see some amazing art in action but also to speak to the artists about all things art!

Find out what projects they have planned for 2021, delve into the details about their new artworks on exhibition, or perhaps you would like to commission an artist to paint something special for you, whether it be Landscape, Marine Art, Wildlife or Still Life.

Amongst the artists-in-residence over the weekend is marine artist Ian Hansen. Ian is a Fellow of The Royal Art Society, a Fellow of The Australian Institute of History and Arts and a Fellow of The Australian Society of Marine Artists. His works hang in Government House Sydney, Sydney Stock Exchange, Australian National Maritime Museum, Sydney Heritage Fleet, Royal Australian Navy, Naval Historical Society, Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron, Lady Denman Museum, AMP building and many corporate and private collections throughout the World. For maritime art lovers, owning an Ian Hansen is a very sound investment.

Recognising his talent and career, Ian was recently asked to create a painting for Australia Post of a Naval shipwreck called Cerberus, located in Victoria.

The postage stamp is being launched the day after the Festival of Two Palettes on 22 March, along with memorabilia, including a postcard, first-day cover and medallion. Visit the exhibition to have Ian sign a copy of Stamp Bulletin 370, take a sneak peek at the new release stamp and see if you can find the tiny ‘F’ in the lower left-hand side of his paintings.

Rumour has it that Ian’s nickname in the Navy was "Fritz", and his first paintings were sold to the captain of his ship, who later asked him to continue to put the F for Fritz into all of his paintings, so he would know it was him.

Also in residence will be Natalie Jane Parker. This Hunter Valley-based artist is the author/illustrator of dozens of children’s books. Her artwork is featured on mugs, trays, tea towels and jigsaw puzzles for giftware giant Ladelle under their Ashdene brand. Natalie has recently collaborated with fabric specialists ‘Two Green Zebras’. Her artworks have been printed in Korea onto fabric panels, which may be cut up to make quilts, cushions, tote bags and T-Shirts. Each panel features at least three different designs, and they retail for $15 per panel of three or more images. The range is called the Devonstone Collection, and they will be available for sale throughout the Festival.

Festival of Two Palettes originated 18 years ago as a hybrid version of The Art Palette and The Food & Wine Palate, and includes plenty to tempt your own palette as well. Drop in for a wine tasting at Boydell’s Cellar Door & Restaurant (directly across the road from Morpeth Gallery in Green Street). Linger longer (bookings recommended) for an a la carte two or three-course lunch or dinner – you will not be disappointed.

For a big brekky or light lunch, look no further than the Servant’s Quarter’s Tearoom within the Campbell’s Store complex. Open from 9am for breakfast on weekends (and 10am weekdays), the tearoom closes around 4pm. To make a booking phone 4934 1857 (Thursday – Sunday).

Meanwhile, the recently opened High Tea on the Hunter, diagonally opposite Morpeth Bridge at 119 Swan Street, is a venue passionately dedicated to High Tea. Walk through the door and step back in time – when life was simpler, calmer, and dare we say it, more refined—phone Kez on 0407 776 621 to book.

For a complete list of artists in residence during the Festival of Two Palettes and more information about Morpeth Gallery – visit the website at The gallery can be found at 175 Swan Street, Morpeth; entry is free, and it is open from Thursdays to Sundays from 10am until 4pm.

Pictured Top: Leander and Thermopylae Original Oil on Belgian Linen 90cm x 60cm $9000.



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