Soft Core

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Koji Ryui, Have A Nice Day 2014, unfired clay, polyethylene bag, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist and Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney.

The exciting touring exhibition Soft Core opens at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery Saturday 26 August. Guest speaker exhibition curator Michael Do will present a floor talk from 2.15pm prior to opening Soft Core. The exhibition continues to Sunday 8 October 2017.

This “must-see” exhibition presents a diverse range of artistic practices that explore the many facets of ‘softness’. There are not only works that utilise tactile materials, co-opted for their versatility and their mutability between function and emotion, but also, works that require activation – such as electricity or inflation to become whole while others inhabit their softness quietly.

Soft Core includes leading artists from overseas and Australia including internationally renowned US video and installation artist Tony Oursler; Michael Parekowhai arguably New Zealand’s most celebrated artist; and Koji Ryui from Japan, now living in Australia. Australian artists are Patricia Piccinini who famously designed the Skywhale hot air balloon; Louise Weaver who renders sophisticated animal sculptures decorated with ornate crocheted, embroidered and sequined pelts that evoke folklore and enchanted fables, Paul Yore who combines hand-woven tapestries and kitsch found objects to shape phantasmagorical imagery, saturated in psychedelic colours, playful techniques and imaginative compositions, as well as, Tully Arnot, Mikala Dwyer, Tully Moore, Todd Robinson, Kathy Temin and Simon Yates.

In the 20th Century, artists began to disassemble the notion of traditional sculpture by adding and subtracting constructions, incorporating found objects and designating everyday items as art. These adaptive and divergent methods of form making continue today in a generation of artists who define sculpture in the negative condition: not bronze, not stone, not the macho force of the blast furnace.

Soft Core is presented by the Cowra Regional Art Gallery in conjunction with Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre and toured by Museums & Galleries of NSW. This project has been assisted by the Australian Government’s Visions of Australia program.

For more information contact the Gallery Director Brian Langer on (02) 6340 2192 or 0429 027 282 or email

Cowra Regional Art Gallery is located at 77 Darling Street Cowra NSW 2794
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10am to 4pm, Sunday 2pm–4pm. Admission is Free.
Office: (02) 6340 2190

2017 Calleen Art Award – People’s Choice Award Announcement

Friday, July 7, 2017

Paul McKnight with his painting Albany Trio on Turkish Paisley, 2016, oil on canvas, 45 x 60 cm.

The votes are in and the winner of the People’s Choice Award for the 2017 Calleen Art Award is Paul McKnight from Grenfell for is intricate painting Albany Trio on Turkish Paisley, 2016, oil on canvas, 45 x 60 cm. “I began painting teacups after being given a number of tea cup settings from my grandmother. Her morning and afternoon teas were quite a memorable feature of my visits with her. These paintings utilised a variety of different settings with mixtures of tea cups, tea bags, biscuits, cakes, slices and tablecloths.” said Paul.

This year’s Calleen Art Award exhibition consisted of an amazing range of 49 outstanding paintings from 279 entries from around Australia.

Congratulations to Paul McKnight and thank you to all who voted, we look forward to seeing you in 2018.

Cowra Regional Art Gallery
77 Darling Street Cowra NSW 2794
Phone: 02 6340 2190
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10am–4pm, Sunday 2pm–4pm
Admission free

2017 Calleen Art Award Opening Night – 6 May 2017

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

The announcement of the 2017 Calleen Art Award winner will take place at a special opening at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery on Saturday 6 May 2017 commencing at 6pm. Guest speakers are Cr Judi Smith, Deputy Mayor, Cowra Shire Council and the Awards Judge Angus Trumble, Director, National Portrait Gallery.

The Calleen Art Award was established in 1977 as an acquisitive art prize by Mrs Patricia Fagan OAM to encourage originality, creativity and excellence. During the past 40 years the Calleen Art Award has developed significantly and through the generous support of the Calleen Trust is worth $20,000 in 2017. This year’s winning painting joins the Calleen Collection, the cornerstone collection of the Cowra Regional Art Gallery.

This year 275 entries were received from across Australia and 49 artists whose work address a wide range of styles and diverse issues have been selected by a panel of experts as finalists.

The awards opening night is a significant cultural event in the region and promises to be a memorable and enjoyable experience.
During the opening event young musicians from the Sydney Conservatorium currently on tour in the region will present a repertoire of music for flute, cello and guitar.

Entry is $15pp ($10 Friends of the Gallery) with a chance to win a lucky door prize. Complimentary food and wine will be served.
The exhibition continues to Sunday 18 June 2017.

For more information please call the Gallery on 63402190.

2017 Calleen Art Award finalists

Sunday, April 30, 2017

The Cowra Regional Art Gallery is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2017 Calleen Art Award.

Susan Baird
Melissa Barber
Hans Bildstein
Stephen Bird
Meredith Brice
Kate Briscoe
Fran Callen
Rhonda Campbell
Jane Canfield
Gregory Carosi
Genevieve Carroll
Lottie Consalvo
Stephen Copland
Dagmar Cyrulla
Sinead Davies
James Drinkwater
Rachel Ellis
Lynne Flemons
Joanna Gambotto
Kay Greenhill
Stewart Hambrett
Craig Handley
Geoff Harvey
Clifford How
Penny Hulbert
Eunice Napanangka Jack

Val Johnson
Zai Kuang
Chris Kunko
Graham Kuo
Selway Lampard
Marie Mansfield
Nic Mason
Tania Mason
Paul McKnight
Alfred W. Miles
Helen Minogue
Annabel Nowlan
Hal Pratt
Matthew Quick
Hannah Quinlivan
Jeannette Siebols
Stuart Smith
Neil Taylor
Sokquon Tran
Lucy Urquhart
Anita West
Madeleine Winch
Zoe Young

Media Release: Autumn exhibitions at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Calling all beanie lovers everywhere, it you loved the first and second collections or maybe you missed them, now is your chance to catch the fabulous new Colours of the Country III: Alice Springs Beanie Festival national tour together with Collection In Focus: New Acquisitions at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery commencing Saturday 25 March 2017.

A colourful display of over ninety beanies Colours of the Country III highlights the whimsical essence of the Alice Springs Beanie Festival and also showcases works produced by Indigenous artists from the central desert region who are regular contributors to this cross-cultural event. Many gorgeous ideas and stories have been crafted into the pieces on display including the work of many Indigenous painters who have translated their imagery from canvas to textiles.

This collection of beanies from the Alice Springs Beanie Festival demonstrates the growth of the beanie as an art form over the years through the imagination, creativity and fine craftsmanship inherent in each piece. The festival has provided a community for lovers and makers of beanies.

This collection will inspire audiences to laugh, don crazy headwear and bring out those knitting needles all over again. The beanie is an icon of Australian headwear and the Cowra Regional Art Gallery is pleased to host this colourful touring exhibition from Artback NT in conjunction with the Australia Council for the Arts and Northern Territory Department of Arts and Museums.

Collection In Focus: New Acquisitions provides an opportunity for visitors to revisit artworks presented in previous exhibitions at the Gallery and make new discoveries. Works include recent winners of the Calleen Art Award, and new works acquired through a private bequest, and the Commonwealth Government’s Cultural Gifts Program, as well as artist donations and works purchased through the fundraising efforts of the Friends of the Gallery. Artists include Susan Baird, Jo Bertini, Yvonne Boag, Greg Daly, Keith Fyfe, Joanna Logue, Tania Mason, Sally McInerney, Idris Murphy, Peter O’Doherty, Susan O’Doherty and Jenny Sages.

A special opening for both exhibitions will take place at the Cowra Regional Art Gallery on Saturday 1 April from 6pm. All welcome. Guest speaker is Merran Hughes, Artistic Director, Alice Springs Beanie Festival.                                  

Exhibition dates are 25 March to 30 April 2017