Celebrating women in exhibition
A celebration of loved ones, the art community and female lineage will come together in an exhibition this month at the Hastings Art Centre.
A Botanical Calling is a joint exhibition between artists Lizzie Beere and Ros Stewart and shares stories and creative responses to their female lineage and upbringings as Kiwis, Ros says. Both women have held many exhibitions over the years.
“We are also honouring the Blossom Festival and women’s suffrage — embracing the suffrage float by the Heretaunga Women’s Centre. It’s all connected and deliberate.”
Ros says since committing to this show with Lizzie late last year, she has been busy using and trying out a new medium, working steadily all year on her pieces.
“I’m experimenting with alcohol inks. That’s loosened my painting style up a lot. I’ve only just realised that my new large round paintings are Mum’s china plates reinterpreted my way. It makes me laugh. My mother died 28 years ago.”
Ros says Lizzie and her have similar floricultural, matriarchal, geographical backgrounds.
“We were discussing our New Zealand identities, plus the girls’ school we both went to. We are very proud of New Zealand women’s — our great grandmothers’ — suffrage activities and results.”
The exhibition was named Botanical Calling as many of Lizzie and Ros’ close female ancestors created art, expressing with floral forms to “express our multi-generational love of growing flowers, nature, gardens, beauty, fine art and making things“.
Lizzie is exhibiting about 10 paintings, oil and acrylic and a variety of large florography/ photos, plus an installation. Ros will be showing around 30 paintings, four stone sculptures, two bronzes and an installation with eight sculptural up-cycled objects.
“We are both also installing a small area of our grandmothers’ artworks, etc, to honour, reference and involve them,.” Ros says.
Botanical Calling will take up the gallery’s ground floor.
“We want people to have a beautiful, inspirational, florally embracing, uplifting, engaging artistic/cultural experience when in the room.”
Ros has sculpted for 40 years and creates multimedia. She has also painted for 15 years on and off and says this exhibition has created favourites.
“They make my heart sing, they work. They are strong and meaningful.” Ros says her pieces are a move away from what she’s produced before.
“I’m very deeply pleased about that. I’ve accidentally learned new techniques this year and I am looking forward to playing around with them next year. I don’t think it’s good practice to churn out the same old stuff year after year. Creativity means new ideas, tools, skills and connections.”
■ A Botanical Calling, September 10-22, Hastings Art Centre, Russell St, Hastings. For more information visit www.rosamundstewart.co.nz or www.lizziebere.com
Napier artist Ros Stewart will be exhibiting at Hastings Art Centre in time for Blossom Parade and women’s suffrage anniversary.
Lizzie Beere will be exhibiting her work as part of A Botanical Calling.