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Local identities captured in art

Friday, 4th April, 2014

Gaara Arts’ Jenny Cattonar with her portrait on the Brushmen of the Bush. Gaara Arts’ Jenny Cattonar with her portrait on the Brushmen of the Bush.

By Emily Roberts

The Gaara Arts group will tonight open an exhibition of portraits inspired by the Archibald Prize.

The national Archibald Prize is awarded each year to the best portrait of an Australian distinguished in arts, letters, science or politics.

“We looked at the Archibald Prize and thought it might be ideal to feature something similar but with Broken Hill identities,” said Gaara Arts member Maureen Clark.

“It’s not a competition; we just simply want to show case some lovely works of local identities.

“Our members have also been very busy researching the people they have chose to paint.”

Fellow Gaara artist, Jenny Cattonar, said there was also memorabilia related to the local subjects.

“We have quite a lot of history in this exhibition,” she said.

Mrs Cattonar’s entry is about the famous Brushmen of the Bush.

They were founded in 1973 by Eric Minchin who invited Hugh Schulz, John Pickup and Jack Absalom join. Pro Hart then became a member and they went on to exhibit their pictures of the outback around the world.

“They exhibited work all over the world in Los Angeles, Rome and London,” Mrs Cattonar said.

“They also donated 25 per cent of their earnings to charity.

“I think they put Broken Hill on the map for art. I painted them in 1990 and I thought the painting was suited for this exhibition.”

Mrs Cattonar said she took separate photos of all the Brushmen, then did pastel drawings of them.

“I combined the two to create my painting,” she said. “I thought after 24 years, it might be good to get the painting out of the house.”

The exhibition will be opened at 6.30pm by City Council’s General Manager Therese Manns. It will remain on show until May 4.

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