The Weekly Advertiser Horsham
Author’s work on community wall
An exhibition of illustrations from author Janette Lucus will greet visitors on a community wall when Ararat Gallery TAMA opens again to the public.
The exhibition, featuring 15 illustrations from Lucas’s book Margot and Milligan: Curious as Cats, will be on show until October 19.
Lucas has decades of experience exhibiting her paintings throughout Australia and Indonesia.
Ararat mayor Jo Armstrong emphasised the importance of the community wall in highlighting works of district artists and community groups.
“The gallery received a positive response from the first exhibition ‘The Butterfly Project’, with many proud parents and community members viewing the kindergarten artworks,” she said.
“Following the success of the kinder display, the gallery is proud to present drawings from Lucas’s new children’s book.
“Children’s books are known for their magical illustrations; it’s often the first time kids are exposed to art.”
Having re-discovered an affection for children’s books, Lucas wrote her first book, Margot and Milligan: Curious as Cats, on a road trip visiting a friend’s farm near Byron Bay in 2020.
“The book also takes me back to my childhood. I grew up in the La Trobe Valley where we were surrounded by farmland, often encountering a herd of cows making their way across the road from the milking shed to the paddock,” Lucas said.
“I recently spent an afternoon on a farm near Ararat, in an enclosure with some calves, which behaved ‘curiously as cats’ as they turned to examine me. The behaviour of the calves also inspired the story.
“Margot is a confident and inquisitive child who loves animals and as young children often do, she asks too many questions.
“People can expect to see themes found within the illustrations such as bravery and overcoming fear. All children love art – it helps them process ideas and figure out how things work.
“When I was an art teacher, I noticed that children responded well to figurative drawings and being able to relate to the humanity in artwork.
“My advice for parents looking to encourage creativity is to allow children to make a mess and have a dedicated creative space where they can access materials to draw freely.
“It’s wonderful to have my illustrations from my first published children’s book featured at the gallery, I’m hoping they will inspire children to draw.”
People seeking more information about the gallery can call 5355 0220.