The Larwill Studio
The Larwill Studio, located in bustling North Melbourne, is perhaps the most prominent of the Art Series group. This boutique hotel was rated Melbourne’s number one out of 158 hotels for two consecutive years. It is a short stroll to the CBD, with its shops and facilities adjoining the Royal Children’s Hospital. This beautiful hotel has become a welcome refuge for many families of long-term hospital patients.
It might be the hotel’s proximity to the Royal Children's Hospital that spurred the decision to make David Larwill the patron artist. He always admired the spontaneity of children’s artwork and his own works are vibrant, playful and naïve. His paintings have a raw style, brimming with fabulous beasts and curious looking human figures, often taking the form of mosaic-style characters. David’s motto, “art from the heart”, is evident in his work and continues to influence the world of expressionist art.
The lobby boasts a table big enough to seat 50 people, while cabinets filled with all kinds of decorations offset the communal furnishings. This is an unusual combination of fittings and furnishings for a boutique hotel, yet the effort and care put into decorating the space has created a lovely atmosphere of warmth and caring for visitors who pass through the lobby on their way into the hospital.
The Deague family, founders of the Art Series Hotel Group, invited David to become the director of the hotel in 2000. Sadly, David passed away from leukemia in 2011 before he could see the completion of this wonderful hotel. The building stands as a monument to this visionary artist’s life, with Brett Parker, the hotel’s manager, saying, “The Larwill Studio can be said to embody the essence of Mr Larwill’s artistic achievements; the Deague family pays tribute to his accomplishments through this hotel.”
It Must be from heart - David Larwill