News and Press by year

Moon Days

The Planner, Metro, Sydney Morning Herald    6 December 2013

Tanya Chaitow's Moon Days is a collection of small-scale paintings that have the magic and charm of a chidren's book, featuring spooky man-beasts, wise owls, lambs and dogs, such as in Self Portrait (after Soutine) (pictured).



Moon Days Tanya Chaitow

By Sharne Wolff
The Art Life    29 November 2013

In Tanya Chaitow’s painting Moon Mirror, a hybrid creature – a tallish feathered owl who walks on oversize feet – diligently cradles a glowing yellow moon while traversing a sky-like floor. Two more owl-like souls, dressed in an assortment of formalish clothes, stand solemnly one behind the other. While neither of the onlookers gives any clear indication of the mission, both stand by with quizzically ambiguous looks. ...more


Insight Radical: Where Science Meets Art Steve Lopes

   26 November 2013

Steve Lopes will have work featured in Insight Radical: Where Science Meets Art, opening Tuesday 26 November, 6.30 - 8.30 pm at Mclemoi Gallery, Chippendale. The exhibition continues until 9 December 2013, along with artists Tony Lloyd, Anna Madeleine, Natalie O'Connor, Peter Sharp and Ruth Waller, whom participated with Lopes in an artist residency with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Free Radical Chemistry and Biotechnology. ...more


Tanya Chaitow Moon Days

   19 November - 14 December 2013

Ambiguity and whimsy are important elements in TANYA CHAITOW'S work and her fanciful images blur past and present, fact and fiction, internal and external reality. Her drawings and acrylic on board paintings explore the relationship between emotion and imagination.



Eutick Memorial Still Life Award Congratulations Steve Lopes!

   15 November 2013

Congratulations Steve Lopes, who has been selected as a finalist in the Eutick Memorial Still Life Award (EMSLA) for the second consecutive year. The EMSLA exhibition opens tonight and will continue until 18 January 2014 at the Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery. ...more


5 Questions with... Steve Lopes From the Stella Downer Fine Art blog    12 November 2013

China Studies is a collection of drawings, prints and oil studies made during the artist’s Red Gate Residency in 2011. Lopes spent six months working in Feijiacun, Beijing. This body of work focuses on artistic interpretation and impressions of the small Bei Gao village in Feijiacun, north of Beijing, and its earmarked future as a growth section and extension of the encroaching metropolis. He produced over fifty works during his stay, recording the changing village life and its people. We asked the artist about the experience this exhibition. ...more


Fishers Ghost Art Award Congratulations Tanya Chaitow and Liz Shreeve!

   2 November - 16 December 2013

Congratulations Tanya Chaitow and Liz Shreeve, who have been selected as finalists in the Fishers Ghost Art Award. The exhibition is being held at Campbelltown Arts Centre, 2 November - 16 December 2013. The launch will take place Friday 8th November from 7 pm. ...more


River Marks: Scenes from the Hawkesbury Featuring Viola Dominello

   30 October 2013

Work by Viola Dominello will feature in the upcoming River Marks: Scenes from the Hawkesbury at Edge Art Space, Brooklyn, NSW. The exhibition opens Friday 1st November 2013, from 6 to 8 pm, and will continue until Sunday 17th November.



Doug Moran National Portrait Prize Congratulations Steve Lopes!

   30 October 2013

Congratulations to Steve Lopes, who has been selected as a finalist in the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize. Lopes' portrait will be on show as part of the prize exhibition, held at Juniper Hall, Paddington, from 24 October 2013. ...more


Annual Packsaddle Fundraising Exhibition Viola Dominello, Rachel Fairfax, Rod Holdaway, Ian Marr

   24 October 2013

Viola Dominello, Rachel Fairfax, Rod Holdaway and Ian Marr will have works featured in this year's Annual Packsaddle Fundraising Exhibition, 25 October - 10 November at the New England Regional Art Museum (NERAM), Armidale, NSW. ...more


Steve Lopes China Studies

   22 October - 16 November 2013

Co-curated by Owen Craven

In China Studies, the artist turns his gaze to village life in China, resting his eyes on scenes often overlooked. Village characters come to life in LOPES' sketches and studies, granting a sense of timelessness to a community in the midst of shifting change.



Artisans in the Gardens 2013 Rae Bolotin and Denese Oates

   16 October 2013

Rae Bolotin and Denese Oates will have sculpture on display as part of this year's Artisans in the Gardens at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney. The exhibition, now in its thirteenth year, will be open Saturday 19 - Sunday 27 October 2013, 10 am - 4 pm. The inaugural Artisans Sculpture Walk will be open from Saturday 12 - Sunday 27 October 2013, 7 am - 7 pm. ...more


Mentors: Inspirational Women Featuring Viola Dominello

   10 October 2013

Viola Dominello will be featured in a line-up of influential female artists brought together for the debut exhibition of the Grace Cossington Smith Gallery, Abbotsleigh, Wahroonga. 'Mentors: Inspirational Women' will be open from 13 October to 5 December 2013. ...more


In Situ 2013 Liz Shreeve

   2 September 2013

Liz Shreeve will have work featured in In Situ 13: Mosman Festival of Sculpture & Installation. The exhibition will be open from Saturday 5 October to Sunday 20 October 2013, during the Festival of Mosman. The opening will take place from 6.30 pm, Friday 4 October, at Mosman Art Gallery. Coriolis, a paper sculpture by the artist, will be on display in the window of Pond, 583 Military Rd, Mosman. ...more


Gallery Artists

   24 September - 19 October

Worlds collide in Gallery Artists. Here, the natural, cultural and liminal meet in playful dialogue. Presenting works by RAE BOLOTIN, ASHLEY FROST, ROD HOLDAWAY, JUDY HOLDING, IAN MARR, LIZ SHREEVE, JOHN WRIGHT. ...more


5 Questions with... Rachel Fairfax: Part 2 of 3 From the Stella Downer Fine Art blog    20 September 2013

Gallipoli and Beyond is an exhibition of works on paper by Rachel Fairfax. The artist presents a quiet view of Turkey, with washes of soft colour that create a sense of the still moment. From ancient cities to the mosques of Istanbul, Fairfax reflects the beauty of a country where many histories co-exist.

This is part two of Rachel’s responses to our questions about her experiences in Turkey and creating this body of work.



5 Questions with... Rachel Fairfax: Part 1 of 3 From the Stella Downer Fine Art blog    19 September 2013

Gallipoli and Beyond is an exhibition of works on paper by Rachel Fairfax. The artist presents a quiet view of Turkey, with washes of soft colour that create a sense of the still moment. From ancient cities to the mosques of Istanbul, Fairfax reflects the beauty of a country where many histories co-exist.

We asked Rachel to share some of the stories behind this exhibition. ...more


Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize Congratulations Denese Oates!

   10 September 2013

Congratulations to Denese Oates, who has been selected as a finalist in this year's Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize. The artist's work Pomegranate Project - Exhibit B will be on display during the prize exhibition at the historic Woollahra Council Chambers in Double Bay from 26 October to 10 November 2013. ...more


Judy Holding 'Connections II' exhibition

   10 - 21 September 2013

Judy Holding Connections II 10 - 21 September 2013 at fortyfive downstairs, Melbourne

Working in the landscape, particularly in the Top End and more recently in Nepal, the most powerful lesson I have learned is not to look just with my eyes, but to ‘ look ‘ with my ears, fingers and nose too so that the experience involves all my senses. – Judy Holding.



Sculpture in the Garden at Lambrigg Ian Marr & Denese Oates

   31 August 2013

Ian Marr and Denese Oates will have work featured in 'Sculpture in the Garden', an exhibition of sculpture in the historic gardens of Lambrigg, Tidbinbilla Rd, Tharwa, ACT. Curated by landscape architect, Neil Hobbs, the gardens will be open Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 October 2013, from 10 am to 4.30 pm each day. ...more


2013 Blake Prize Congratulations Tanya Chaitow!

   29 August 2013

Congratulations to Tanya Chaitow, who has been selected for the 2013 Blake Prize. Her work I have lived here a long time but don't know where here is 5 will be shown in the 62nd Blake Prize exhibition at the College of Fine Arts (COFA), Paddington, from 18 October to 16 November 2013. ...more


Rachel Fairfax Gallipoli and Beyond

   27 August - 21 September 2013

Gallipoli and Beyond is an exhibition of works on paper by RACHEL FAIRFAX. Earlier this year, the artist embarked on an expedition to Gallipoli and other parts of Turkey.



Review: Insight Radical Steve Lopes

By Mimi Goodall    21 August 2013

A trek to White City will reward you with a fascinating mix of science and art.




Gallery Artists 'Open gallery'

By Michael Fitzgerald
Spectrum, The Sydney Morning Herald    17 - 18 August 2013

A move to a more intimate space within the Danks St complex suits Stella Downer and her coterie of 14 artists just fine, with the chance to encounter the subtle workings of Janet Dawson's transcendental brushwork (pictured) and Merran Esson's nature-inscribed ceramics. ...more


Denese Oates at The North Sydney Art Prize

   15 August 2013

The Pomegranate Project by Denese Oates was exhibited at The Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability, Waverton, as part of The North Sydney Art Prize earlier this month. The theme of this year's prize was Toward 2020, calling on the artists to "address a local or global issue..." or "respond to a cultural, historical, social or physical aspect of the Coal Loader site". ...more


ACGA Inaugural Conference at Sydney Contemporary 2013

   14 August 2013

You asked for it! You are getting it! The ACGA Inaugural Conference at Sydney Contemporary 2013. The conference will take place Friday 20th & Saturday 21st September 2013 at Carriageworks, 245 Wilson St, Eveleigh NSW.



'Snowy Owl' A poem by Trevor Weekes

   13 August 2013

Trevor Weekes wrote this poem to accompany his painting, Snowy Owl. He is a prolific artist, working across many mediums, and a senior lecturer in Fine Arts, Illustration and Natural History Illustration at The University of Newcastel. He has a particular fascination with birds. ...more


The Hutchins Art Prize 2013 Congratulations Liz Shreeve!

   8 August 2013

Congratulations to Liz Shreeve, who has been selected for the Hutchins Art Prize 2013. Her work Coriolis will be on exhibition at the Long Gallery, Hobart from the 15th to the 27th of October 2013. ...more


Merran Esson, Ceramicist

   7 August 2013

Merran Esson's tactile and distinctive ceramics were the first artworks to grace our new exhibition space at 2 Danks St, Waterloo. When the artist placed these works on our shelves, the new space suddenly felt like home. ...more


Rachel Fairfax explores Turkey

   19 July 2013

Rachel Fairfax recently embarked on a painting expedition to Turkey with a group of artists including Elisabeth Cummings, Euan McLeod, Peter O'Doherty, Amanda Penrose Hart and Leo Robba. Together they explored the Lycian Coast by boat, taking in the scenery and exploring historic sites. With paintbrush and sketchbook in hand, Fairfax captured her surroundings en plein air. The results of this fruitful journey will be on exhibition at Stella Downer Fine Art from 31 August to 21 September of this year. We look forward to hanging the walls with the colours of Turkey and, in the meantime, here are some photos from the voyage.



Harbour Sculpture 2013 Congratulations Denese Oates!

   19 July 2013

Congratulations to Denese Oates, whose sculpture Ramus has been selected for display in this year's Harbour Sculpture exhibition.

"Denese Oates's Corten steel sculpture Ramus alludes to the growth patterns of nature with the form of a Celtic knot. The organic form is reminiscent of ropes or vines, and becomes a whimsical drawing in space. Oates' use of steel complements both the natural and constructed components of Clarkes Point Reserve and Dock Yard."



The Pomegranate Project by Denese Oates

   19 July 2013

The Pomegranate Project is an installation Denese Oates has been working on for some time, using pomegranate juice cartons that came her way by surprising means.

The installation will be exhibited in the North Sydney Art Prize at the Coal Loader, Balls Head Road Waverton, from 27 July to 5 August 2013. The opening is 2 – 4 pm, Saturday 27 July.



The North Sydney Art Prize 2013 Congratulations Tanya Chaitow, Denese Oates & Liz Shreeve!

   19 July 2013

Congratulations to Tanya Chaitow, Denese Oates and Liz Shreeve, who have been chosen as finalists in The North Sydney Art Prize 2013. With a total prize value of $20,000, the Major Open Award is worth $10,000. Responding to the curatorial theme Toward 2020, finalists were selected by a panel of three judges, Jane Watters, Director, SH Ervin Gallery, National Trust of Australia (NSW), Katherine Roberts, Senior Curator, Manly Art Gallery & Museum and Sam Valenz, Artist & Head of Sculpture Department, Sydney Gallery School. ...more


Mosman Art Prize 2013 finalists announced! Congratulations Rachel Fairfax and Steve Lopes

   9 July 2013

The Mosman Art Prize 2013 opens on Saturday 13 July 2013.

Congratulations to SDFA artists Rachel Fairfax and Steve Lopes, who have had their works selected for this iconic prize. Fairfax's Cockatoos, Coogee and Lopes' Larapinta landscape I can be seen in the exhibition of finalists' work at Mosman Art Gallery, Sydney. The exhibition continues until Sunday 25 August 2013.



Janet Dawson

   2 - 27 July 2013

Reflecting the mutability of nature, JANET DAWSON captures light and tone with a sure and subtle hand. Through landscape and still life, DAWSON traces life's seasons of inevitable ebb and flux, seeing with keen eyes the beauty throughout. ...more


Art on Paper: Hazelhurst Art Award 2013 Congratulations Liz Shreeve!

   6 June 2013

Congratulations to SDFA artist Liz Shreeve, whose work has been selected in the Art On Paper: Hazelhurst Art Award 2013. Shreeve's Growth Cluster can be seen in the award exhibition at Hazelhurst Regional Gallery & Arts Centre, Gymea, from the 6th of July to the 25th of August 2013.



2 Danks St Award for Contemporary Art Criticism

   6 June 2013

The 2 Danks Street Award for Art Criticism has been initiated by the galleries of 2 Danks Street in conjunction with the prestigious magazine Artist Profile and new online art journal Art for All: All for Art.

The prize of $1,000 will be given to a new talent in arts writing, including an invitation to the winner to be published with the sponsor journals.

The judging panel includes:
Candice Bruce - historian, writer and curator
Owen Craven - publisher of Artist Profile,
Pru Gibson - curator, writer and lecturer at COFA
John McDonald - art critic ...more


Art dealers face new scrutiny

By Eamonn Duff
The Sydney Morning Herald    2 June 2013

Gallery owners may be forced to operate under licence and use trust accounts under sweeping new art industry changes to be considered by the federal government.

Arts Minister Tony Burke has called a summit with the nation's peak visual arts body, the National Association for the Visual Arts, with a view to introducing new measures to provide greater protection for professional artists and the public...

According to Stella Downer, NSW and ACT representative for the Australian Commercial Galleries Association, the industry as it stands is ''too loose''.

''Artists must rely on the honour of the galleries and ''while the majority do the right thing and pay their artists - some do not,'' she said.




Ashley Frost in 'Me, the Road and I' at Wollongong City Gallery Narratives of Refugee Passage and Identity

   1 June 2013

Ashley Frost is one of ten artists who were invited to take part in Me, the Road and I, a Wollongong City Gallery exhibition curated by Virginia Settre. The artists were asked to respond to the stories of local people who came to the Illawarra region as refugees. The exhibition is a part of the Refugee Week program and will be open from 1 June to 1 September 2013. ...more


Gallery duo draws artists' wrath

By Eamonn Duff
The Sun-Herald    26 May 2013

A husband and wife art-dealing team has resurfaced in Sydney selling valuable works by Australian and international masters, despite owing tens of thousands of dollars to former clients and creditors...

Stella Downer, NSW and ACT representative for the Australian Commercial Galleries Association (ACGA) said she had distributed an email to fellow gallery owners warning them of the "compromising information" relating to the Bonnefins' business activities. "I advised them of the pattern. He closes one business, then he opens another and doesn't pay his artists. It's practice like this that gives the art world a bad name."



Golden oldies Four artists who were new and exciting in the 1960s and early 1970s are still going strong

By Daniel Thomas
Art & Australia    Winter 2013

After shifting in the 1970s from Sydney to the bush near Yass, where she is still going strong, Dawson reverted to the brilliant draughtsmanship and paint-craft that had won her a scholarship to the Slade School of Fine Art in London. Though Manet's luscious The melon, c. 1880, in the NGV, provides ancestry, her monumental still life, Scribble Rock cauliflower, 1993-97, was another paraphrase of the composition of Milky Way, and crumpled plastic sheeting energises the background to the white vegetable in the same way that flying drapery energises the pale nudity of Tintoretto's reclining goddess. As a young artist Dawson of course was interested in new art and its opticalities, but her enquiring mind soon focused more on biology and other sciences, including astronomy. Though only briefly characteristic of the time, she is an outstanding survivor from the 1960s. ...more


NSW Parliament Plein Air Painting Prize 2013 finalists announced! Congratulations Viola Dominello and Ashley Frost

   8 May 2013

The winner of the NSW Parliament Plein Air Painting Prize 2013 will be announced on Wednesday 8 May 2013.

Congratulations to SDFA artists Viola Dominello and Ashley Frost, who have had their works selected for this prestigious prize. Dominello's Forty Baskets Beach - (dogs and dinghy's) and Frost's Bondi 5 x 5 can be seen in the exhibition of finalists' work, currently being held at NSW Parliament House, Macquarie St, Sydney. The exhibition will continue until the morning of Friday 31 May 2013.



Look Again The work of Janet Dawson in the collection of the National Gallery of Australia

By Jenny Bell
Art Monthly Australia    May 2013

For many years I have had a quote from the publisher Michael Heyward pinned on my wall. It says: 'can we read well enough to discover the fiction to which we aspire?'

Recently I found reason again to ponder these words, while contemplating the extensive collection of works held in the National Gallery of Australia by Janet Dawson (b. 1935) who lives and works near Binalong, in the Southern Tablelands of New South Wales. Over a series of visits to the NGA, viewing this work that represents almost a lifetime of endeavour, I couldn't help but wonder: 'Can we see well enough to be receptive to its depths?'



Bon Voyage Sarah!

   26 April 2013

Stella Downer Fine Art was sad to say "goodbye for now" to our star Gallery Manager, Sarah Vandepeer. Sarah has set off for London, where she will be spending two months working in the Impressionist and Modern Art Department at Christie's auction house as the recipient of a University of Sydney Scholarship. ...more


'The Bell Ringers Ball' performance Ampere Quartet + Steffan Ianigro

   April 2013

The Bell Ringers Ball is an interactive installation by John Wright, Tim Hankinson, Nic Aplin and Steffan Ianigro exploring the acoustic and visual properties inherent in industrial objects. Viewers are encouraged to interact with them and there will be pop up performances throughout the exhibition.



Filomena Coppola 'Chasing the Disappeared'

Tweed River Art Gallery    April 2013

Filomena Coppola has a major exhibition opening at Tweed River Art Gallery from 20 April - 8 September 2013. This includes a major work, an 8 meter long drawing with a pattern of Tasmanian tiger pelt which symbolises the passing of the first generation of Italian immigrants who came to Australia during the 1950's. Read on to see a video of Filomena discussing this work.  ...more


Art Month Sydney attracts over 40,000 visitors

   23 March 2013

As Art Month Sydney 2013 finishes this week, organisers are delighted to announce that the event has this year reached new heights, presenting the most ambitious and diverse program to date and welcoming record numbers into Sydney's art galleries. Attendance in 2013 saw a significant increase with over 40,000 Sydneysiders participating in the event directly and around half a million people connecting with the event online and via social media.



Stella Downer honoured with a Woollahra Citizenship Award

   April 2013

Congratulations to our Director, Stella Downer, who has been honoured with a Woollahra Council Citizenship Award for her outstanding contribution to the arts and cultural life of the community. ...more


Virginia Cuppaidge: New York City - Hill End Paintings

   April 2013

New York based Australian artist Virginia Cuppaidge spent four weeks in Hill End in 2010, participating in the Hill End Artists in Residence Program. Her exhibition, currently showing at Bathurst Regional Art Gallery,  looks at new work painted in New York inspired by her time in this iconic Australian landscape. ...more


Exciting new format for Stella Downer Fine Art in 2013!

   23 March 2013

From April 2013, Stella Downer Fine Art will be moving from a traditional gallery model to a pop-up format & valuation consultancy ...



Ahead of The Pack Art Month dinner at 2 Danks St

Broadsheet    19 March 2013

Keep your finger on the pulse of Sydney's rapid cultural transformation by checking out an Art Month event which will satisfy both mind and body, in the very physical (and delicious) sense. Ahead of The Pack is an insightful discussion about the role of artists and creatives in changing the face of urban Sydney.



Maker/ Wearer/ Matchmaker

Broadsheet    18 March 2013

Art Month is exploring the community aspects of jewellery with Maker/Wearer/Matchmaker, a project that will see the directors of nine galleries at 2 Danks St wearing contemporary art jewels that will be created for them by selected NSW jewellers. ...more


David Fairbairn artist talk

Hawkesbury Regional Gallery newsletter    28 February 2013

David Fairbairn and Paul Newton will be speaking at the Hawkesbury Regional Gallery next Saturday afternoon (2 March) at 3pm. ...more



etc, Sydney Morning Herald    23 February 2013

There are animals of all shapes and sizes at Stella Downer Fine Art.



Miik Green & Paul Higgs Surface Revelations

   19 March - 20 April 2013

PAUL HIGGS and MIIK GREEN create joyous, tactile works. They share a fascination with optical contrast and a sense of excitement in the moment when two colours or textures meet. ...more



   19 February - 16 March 2013

Make tracks to Danks St! During Art Month, Stella Downer Fine Art will offer a wild experience. The gallery will become a menagerie as twelve exhibiting artists delight in all creatures great and small. From insects to elephants, animals have always been a beloved subject matter for artists. They are portrayed as anthropomorphic, domestic, mythological or symbolic. Zoologica will feature ceramics, drawings, glasswork, painting & sculpture by TANYA CHAITOW, VIOLA DOMINELLO, LYNDA DRAPER, RACHEL FAIRFAX, JUDY HOLDING, JACQUI HUDSON, SHERRIE KNIPE, MIKI KUBO, STEVE LOPES, JOY WARREN, TREVOR WEEKES & JOHN WRIGHT.



Sculpture in the Vines

By Virginia Mitchell
Hunter Valley Breathe Magazine, pp. 41-42    Summer 2013

Sculpture in the Vines 2013 included highly respected artists such as Rae Bolotin who shows regularly with Stella Downer Gallery in the Danks Street arts precinct. Coincidentally, Stella Downer was instrumental in establishing the first Sculpture in the Vineyards in 2002. ...more


Family Silver

The Planner, Sydney Morning Herald    26 January 2013

Uzbekistand-born sculptor Rae Bolotin has converted family heirlooms into modern pieces of abstract art. ...more


Sculpture in the Vineyards, a review

By Jenny Green, President of the Sculptors Society
Sculptors Society Bulletin    January 2013

Rae Bolotin's ‘Seed Form', in stainless steel, is particularly engaging because of its innovative patina. The stainless steel has been treated with a variety of gases in a vacuum chamber to generate a rainbow range of colours that has the effect of bringing the form to life. ...more


Rae Bolotin Family Silver

   23 January - 16 February 2013

RAE BOLOTIN has an affinity for metal and her latest pieces incorporate treasured heirlooms - the family silver. BOLOTIN repurposes antiques, converting them according to a contemporary visual language. Elements of line, volume, space, rhythm and structure are explored to create unified and poetic abstract forms.  Like the cutlery set they once were, these contemplative objects are mannered, elegant and refined.



Start Off the Art Year at 2 Danks Street

Urban Walkabout    5 December 2012

Set within the food and arts hub of Sydney in Waterloo and with over 30 artists exhibiting throughout this creative arts complex, 2 Danks Street will be offering up a smorgasbord of art and food on the evening! ...more


News and Press

News and editorial for the Stella Downer Fine Art covering exhibitions and/or artist features.

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