What do you make?
Dennis – I predominantly make opal necklaces. Majority of the stones are sources from the Yowah Fields, 100 Kilometres from Cunnamulla in the Queensland Outback.
Gillian – I enjoy a variety of artistic mediums. I’m absorbed in glass bead making as well as spinning and knitting.
Can you explain your process?
Dennis – I fossick whenever possible as well as purchasing un-cut stones from the mines 20 litre buckets. ‘You pay your money and takes your chances’ as most indicate very little colour on the outside.
With Boulder Opal, the beauty is in the cutting and polishing which can take many hours to complete, as the opal content layer can be half millimetre thick. The majority of stones are finished in a liquid glass after polishing, because of the delicate nature of the opal and many stones are mounted on re-cycled teaspoons.
What is the best part of working with your medium?
Dennis – All opal shows its full brilliance in sunlight and every stone is different, so you will have a unique piece that has been cut and polished locally.
Gillian – My preferred fibre is 100% alpaca which is warmer than wool and less inclined to cause allergic reactions.
What works do you have on show this month at Ferry Park?
Dennis – On display are my signature opal necklaces and other opal designs.
Gillian – You can view my ‘Fifty Shades of White’ artwork that celebrates the reflectiveness of white in her current body of artwork. These artworks explore texture through the use of palette knives and scratching into thick paint. You can also view my knitting and bead making at Ferry Park this month.
The Artist of the Month exhibition is on at Ferry Park Gallery Maclean till Wednesday, April 26.