Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery is featuring the work of four very diverse artists from different eras and across a range of media.
Constance Stokes (1906-1991) is one of the leading artists of her generation, and MPRG’s current exhibition (until September 17) is the most expansive survey undertaken of this important artist. It features over 35 key paintings and drawings covering the breadth of her 60-year artistic practice, with never before seen archival material from the artist’s estate, including journals, sketchbooks, letters, photographs and drawings that provide a fascinating insight into her little-known life and exceptional artistic practice.
In 1929 Constance won the Travelling Scholarship at the National Gallery School, Melbourne, to study for two years at the Royal Academy in London. During her time abroad she spent time studying under the French Cubist artist André Lhote in Paris and visited the major galleries in Europe. Her early career is shaped through her struggle to be an artist alongside expectations of marriage and family life.
Further opportunities abroad and the consolidation of her classical painting style were features of her mid-career. In 1953 she was one of 12 Australian artists - and one of only two women artists - included in an exhibition at Burlington Galleries, London, alongside Arthur Boyd, William Dobell, Russell Drysdale, Lloyd Rees, Donald Friend, and Sidney Nolan.
Constance had a late career flourish in her 70s, embedding a Matisse-inspired vibrancy and freedom of form and colour in some of the strongest work she produced.
Also on display at MPRG is Archibald Prize-winning artist Wendy Sharpe’s WANDERLUST, featuring work from her recent travels and residencies over the past 10 years in France, Egypt, Morocco and Antarctica. Instagram sensation Minna Gilligan’s Mystery to Me presents large-scale digital prints on fabric alongside small-scale collage works and tackles notions of the female protagonist. And Gosia Wlodarczak’s ephemeral drawing project has transformed the gallery café space, activating the surfaces with handmade marks as Gosia responded to the forms she encountered while drawing.
The gallery is open Tuesday-Sunday 10am-5pm. Exhibition admission fees: $4 adults / $2 concession.
MORNINGTON PENINSULA REGIONAL GALLERY
A: Civic Reserve, Dunns Rd, Mornington
T: 5950 1580