Lynne Mowbray |
The Grafton Regional Gallery celebrated its 30th birthday with the official opening of ‘Paintings You Probably Haven’t Seen: Selected Works 2000 – 2017’ exhibition, by renowned artist Ken Done, on Friday evening.
Grafton Regional Gallery director Niomi Sands welcomed around 70 guests who attended the birthday celebrations and the official opening of Ken Done’s exhibition.
Clarence Valley Councillor Peter Ellem presented a narrative on the history of the gallery over the years, before officially opening the exhibition.
Special guest speaker was distinguished Gallery Patron Ken Done who also presented three life membership awards to Peter McKenna, Mary McCrohon and Pam Fysh, for their contribution to the gallery over the years.
During his speech, Mr Done told of fond memories of his childhood, growing up in Maclean.
He told the crowd, that over the years he’s had the opportunity to travel extensively, staying in some of the finest hotels the world has to offer, but ‘you just can’t beat staying in a tent by the beach in Yamba’.
“The Grafton Regional Gallery is a lovely gallery and I’m pleased to be here,” Mr Done said.
“It’s wonderful to have the opportunity to show work that a lot of people may not have seen, which comes from a book that’s just been published called, ‘Paintings You Probably Haven’t Seen’.
“To see them hung in this space is terrific and I’m very pleased that the gallery’s receiving some money from the government and will expand into the future and become even more important.
“(Among the art works on exhibit) there are a couple of self portraits.“There’s one called, ‘Me growing old’, which is pretty sombre and decaying and then there’s another one, which was hung in the Archibald; and if you paint a picture of yourself, I think you can take liberties with yourself that you may not take with other people,” he said.
Mr Done said that it was interesting for him to see how the gallery had hung his art works.
“We obviously have our own gallery in Sydney and hang things, but when someone else takes them over, they hang them in a slightly different way or put different sets of pictures together; it’s really exciting to see them.
“I’m thrilled with the work and I’m thrilled with the way that they’re hung,” he said.
Mr Done said that they (he and his wife Judy) have just returned from a visit to Iceland, but they’d arranged the trip so that they could come up to the Clarence Valley and attend this event.
“We had last night in Maclean, but sadly have to go back tomorrow,” he said.