<i> Contoneaster</i> (2014) <i> Fairy princess </i> (2014) <i> Stinky Weed </i> (2014) <i> Mustard Weed </i> (2013) <i> Afternoon, Alta Vista Tucson </i> (2005) <i> Summer Garden </i> (2009)

Lucy Culliton
Weeds of the Monaro and others
20th August - 23rd August

Following on from 2012's sell out exhibition Bibbenluke Flowers, The Hughes Gallery is proud to announce Lucy Culliton's exhibition of new paintings Weeds of the Monaro and others. This year marks the 15th anniversary of Lucy's relationship with Ray and Evan Hughes. Over this period her work has gone from strength to strength and she has become one of Australia's best-loved oil painters. She has won the Portia Geach, Mosman and Kedumba drawing prizes and has been collected by a number of important institutions including the National Gallery of Australia, Australian Parliament House and the Gold Coast Arts Centre. These achievements are also being celebrated through a mid career survey exhibition of her work at Mosman Gallery, opening in late September.
Since moving to Bibbenluke on NSW's Monaro in 2007, Lucy has found professional contentment in the constant inspiration that her home and garden, and the collections of objects and menagerie of animals within, provide. Lucy is an avid gardener, which requires frequent weeding. On one such occasion, Lucy noticed the inherent beauty of plants such as paterson's curse, dandelions, deadly nightshade and thistles. While she didn't want them in her garden, they looked lovely in the vessels that she had collected over the years - striped milk jugs, Chinese vases and jars. Placed on printed tablecloths and doilies, they became an obvious subject to paint.
The resulting works are richly coloured and textured. The weeds are wilder and more freely arranged than the cultivated blooms of Bibbenluke Flowers, but their context is more opulent than the previous exhibition's glass jars. This adds grandeur and elegance to the weeds, and makes us reconsider something we would usually look over. This is Lucy's aim, as she states " I love making something like a weed pretty and important; that I can paint a thistle, a noxious weed, and make it look beautiful." It is also a unique subject - while countless artists have found inspiration in flowers, this must be the first visual study of the weeds of Australia.
In this exhibition, Lucy also returns to one of her great passions, landscape painting. Lucy has a talent for capturing the essence of any area she visits - from the snowfields of Perisher to the arid desert of the Kimberly. The works in this show depict properties surrounding her house at different times of the day, throughout the year. These works are highly evocative, offering a detailed, realistic depiction, but more importantly capturing the light, sounds and other ephemeral features that make up our surroundings.