A wonderful launch of ‘Earthbody’

‘Earthbody’ was beautifully launched last Sunday at the Arts Hub with a large and appreciative crowd in attendance.

Here is a lovely note from Ros Hart about her response to the event and the works.

Congratulations on a wonderful, wonder-filled art exhibition and a very enjoyable launch yesterday. I think this my favourite of all art exhibitions I have been to at the Arts Hub. I loved Belinda Prest’s work especially (wish I had $$$ to spare). Her work took me right back to my younger self when I was a jillaroo, out all day in the highlands of Victoria, looking across beautiful vistas which mending fences and attending to livestock.

My favourite of your lyrical pieces, (Saide), is the weaving in the second room. I loved the flow of the white through the burnt oranges and browns, underscoring the delicate and minimalist placed pieces pf your beloved found vegetation. 

Ann Berg’s room was stunning too – reminded me of aboriginal dreaming. I could feel Ann’s heart in her work. Warm and powerful. …. 

I loved the floaty ethereal, otherworldliness, dreamy quality of Chrisanne Blennerhassett’s work. It was full of heart. 

Please pass onto your fellow artists my thanks and gratitude for the hard and heartfelt work you all do to bring insight, reflection and beauty into our world. Thank you from Ros.

Note: This Exhibition, EarthBody, is open all weekends in August from 11am – 5pm. Viewers and visitors are most welcome.

If any of the Friends of Newstead Railway ArtsHub would like to spend some time during August weekends assisting with minding the ARtsHub or joining in Words in Winter events please feel free to find out more at


Or contact us by email:


Or by phone

0419 543 667 text is fine.


Newstead Art Salon Exhibition

Newstead Art Salon Exhibition

Newstead Community Centre
Fri 17th – Sun 26th March
Open 10am – 4pm daily

It’s the Castlemaine State Festival time again, and like two years ago (when the Newstead Art Salon’s exhibition was titled ‘Spadeworks’), Newstead’s artists are holding a collective exhibition at the Community Centre. Over 100 works were exhibited in the last show, which was extremely successful, so come along during the festival to enjoy an extraordinary diversity of talent and creative artworks.

The formal opening of the exhibition will be on Sunday 19th March, at 2pm. It will be opened by local identities and all round good guys, former Councilor and Mayor Michael Redden and Nick Hudson.

Newstead’s studios open their doors

During the Castlemaine State Festival eight studios will open their doors providing access to a diverse selection of passionately created artworks from 11 artists.

Open during the weekends of 18th & 19th and 25th & 26th March 2017 from 10-4pm with some studios open throughout the week. Please check the website for more details.

Download the map here: Newstead Open Studios map final

Brochures are available from various outlets in Newstead, Castlemaine and Maldon… or you can download the guide directly on your phone or tablet: Newstead Open Studios map final The artists are looking forward to sharing stories of their artistic journeys. They want to inspire visitors with their endeavours and hope guests appreciate the uniqueness of their artwork and support their efforts with a purchase that has an intriguing story attached.
Below is a small glimpse of what is waiting for you at the Newstead Open Studios

Chris Johnston’s medium is clay; sculptural and functional, which reflects her connection to place and the land.


Roger McKindley’s Antares Iron Art Garden is where broken and discarded objects morph together to live once again.

Brass and copper are manipulated by Trefor Prest to create intricate, organic and mechanical oddities – with a touch of Steampunk.

Sarah Koschak creates functional wheel thrown porcelain pottery for everyday use. Her pieces are simply elegant.

Sally Roadnight explores the landscape through the artistry of various found objects and media including drawing, sewing, printing, sculpture and basketry.

reiteration - artists sally roadknight, julie patey, georgina duckett, sandra tobias at newstead artshub exhibition opening
Printmaker Richard Sullivan is influenced by his environment which is reflected in the artist books, collage and altered books he creates.
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Prue McAdam’s special love of abstraction and gestural marks is explored in her paintings. Prue paints using a variety of media.

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Striving for the highest quality of woodwork of which his hands and mind are capable, Lachlan Park makes ‘things’ from wood.


Krissy Scherlies is currently allowing her imagination to take control as she paints colourful, contemporary canvases using paint and sand.


Julie Patey utilises printmaking and mixed media to explore the process of art making through the use of colour, shape and texture to echo her connection to the landscape of central Victoria.


Stunning nature photographs of the bush reserve surrounding the Old Walmer School are captured by photographer Bronwyn Silver.


Thanks to Kristin Scherlies.

New exhibition: 30 years

The forthcoming exhibition at the Newstead Railway Arts Hub is a celebration of a 30-year friendship between three artists, George Duckett, George Matoulas and Rob Dott.

The exhibition will open on Sunday 15th January with an opening gathering at 2pm. It will run until Sunday 5th February.

Opening hours are 11am – 4pm Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

Between them they have, in various combinations, studied together, shared houses and studios and the myriad of other sharings that constitute a friendship, including a concern for the vicissitudes of each others studio practice.

Despite a common geographic departure point of Fitzroy, Melbourne and a shared sensibility about the value of craftsmanship in the making of work the exhibition contains three disparate thematic concerns; weaponry, music and the tree .The exhibition also contains multitudinous mediums including a tapestry, work on paper, intaglio prints, paintings and assemblages.

Synergy – Creative photography exhibition

Through December 2016 and into the new year, we have an exhibition featuring the creative work of four central Victorian photographers: Rob Watson, Natalie Coombes, Nathan Segaloff and Aden Brown. Each have been exploring diverse photographic techniques and concepts, resulting in unique and impressive images.

The exhibition – entitled ‘Synergy‘ – will be opened by the Arts Hub’s own Julie Patey at 2pm on Saturday 10th December, and you are warmly invited.

The exhibition will be open 10am-5pm, Friday-Sunday from 10th December – 7th January, excluding the Sundays of Xmas Day and New Years Day.

Synergy photographic exhibition, Dec 2016-Jan 2017

Rob Watson
Rob Watson
Nathan Segaloff
Nathan Segaloff
Natalie Coombes
Natalie Coombes
Aden Brown
Aden Brown

MAG-nificent: Journeying with Maldon Art Group

Maldon Art Group – MAG – is an eclectic group of artists with wildly differing art experiences and practice. They meet weekly, without fail, throughout the year only having the Christmas week off.

Their gatherings are full of chat, laughter and food, with advice and feedback given when requested. A warm, supportive group.

This inaugural exhibition showcases their diverse styles and embraces their joy at being part of such a unique group.

The exhibition will run from 11th of November until the 4th of December, open 10am – 4pm Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays

Opening night is at 6pm on the 11th of November – all welcome.

MAG embraces a range of media including, oils, house paint, fabric, watercolour, acrylic, pencil and charcoal, reflecting their journey together. There is fantasy, realism and quirkiness in equal measure.

MAG hope that this will be an exhibition where people will come along and become lost in the work they offer and then return for another look, bringing a friend with them.



Weaving Magic

During September, the Newstead Spinners and Weavers are transforming the gallery with colour, movement and activity. Every room in the old railway building is filled with beautiful work, including large shawls, jumpers, skeins of wool and a whole room full of felted hats.

There are items for sale, but mostly the members simply enjoy displaying their talents and techniques, and talking to visitors. The felting displays exquisite forms of natural fibres combined with leaves and bark implants. Spinning wheels show how wool is transformed from raw to finished thread, and a loom allows you to observe a large weaving being created. It is fascinating to see both the raw material and final object.

The air is fun-filled, with members very busy with demonstrations and visitors all day. There is so much local talent on display, and I hope you didn’t miss out on seeing their magic.

‘Fibre to Finished Product’ is open Tuesdays and weekends until 27th September, 10am – 4pm.

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‘Fun with Fibre’ at the Newstead Railway Arts Hub

Newstead Spinning Group

‘Fun with Fibre’ at the Newstead Railway Arts Hub


The Newstead Spinning Group was formed in 1978: yes…we are coming up to our 40th anniversary! That is pretty amazing for a small community group that began with a few keen spinners gathering in their own homes. Over the years people have come and gone and stayed. We now meet at the Newstead Community Centre each fortnight.

Our aim is to bring together and support people who are interested in spinning and related crafts. We work with a variety of fibres including wool, alpaca, mohair, silk, etc.  Bringing together the process from fibre to the finished product includes cleaning and carding the fleece, perhaps dyeing with commercial or natural dyes, spinning or felting. We create coloured yarns, knit, crochet and weave. This is always exciting and the outcomes often surprising and always lovely. We share our diverse skills, our latest projects and good company and are always open to learning new skills and techniques.


Saturday 10th to Tuesday 27th September 

Open Tuesdays and weekends, 10am – 4pm


On show ‘Fibre to Finished Product’: a collection of members’ creations: hanks and carded batts, to scarves, throws, beanies, hats, cushions, mittens, and more.

Demonstrations: carding, spinning, weaving, dyeing and felting (weather permitting). Dyeing and felting demonstrations will be on Tuesday 13th and 27th, our regular gathering days, at the Railway Arts Hub for September.

Further information: please contact either of the following or talk to a current member.

President: Wendy Charles 53484786            Secretary: Karen Baker 0439714665



Trees of the Mount Alexander Shire Region – upcoming exhibition

Trees ain’t trees!

Where did the idea get about that our trees all ‘look the same’?

The problem has been around for a long time: in 1770 Captain Cook wrote about the NSW coast: ‘the woods do not produce any variety of trees.’ In 1836 Darwin claimed that ‘the extreme uniformity of the vegetation’ was ‘the most remarkable feature of the vegetation’ he observed in Australia. And in 1939 the poet AD Hope talked of the ‘drab green and desolate grey’ of our vegetation. And he compounded the insult by suggesting that the Australian people were just as monotonous…

Maybe these very worthy experts weren’t looking hard enough?

email Death Throes - Rise and Shine
Death Throes, Yellow Box , Rise and Shine Bushland Reserve – Photo by Damian Kelly Nov 2015

Our new exhibition of photos is set to have a go at overturning the still widespread notion that our trees are monotonously uniform. Trees of the Mount Alexander Region aims to highlight the amazing variety to be seen in our local indigenous trees: even those of the same genus—for example, eucalypts—can exhibit a wild variety of shape and colour, as well as hosting an extraordinary diversity of wildlife.

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Nankeen Kestrel,  Moolort Plains  – Photo by Patrick Kavanagh Jan 2014

This is FOBIF’s 6th photographic exhibition. The exhibitions all focus on our local environment and aim to highlight the beauty and importance of our bushlands.

In January 2016 we had a ‘call for photos’ for a tree exhibition and photos sent to us were placed on our Flickr page

We selected 23 photos from over 100 sent to us to exhibit in two exhibitions. The first one was at TOGS cafe in Castlemaine in March 2016 and the second one is at the Newstead Railway Arts Hub. All photos are for sale.

The photographers featured in this exhibition are: Janet Barker, Neil Barrett, Frances Cincotta, John Ellis, Patrick Kavanagh, Damian Kelly, Geoff Park, Harley Parker, Mitchell Parker, Ern Perkins, Bronwyn Silver, Bernard Slattery, Jen Thomas, Marion Williams, Chris Worland and Deborah Worland

Exhibition opening  will be at 10.30 am on Saturday 4 June. Everyone is welcome.

The exhibition runs from the 4th-26th of June and will be open at weekends and the Queens Birthday holiday on Monday 13 June. Opening hours are Sat and Sun 10am to 4 pm. If you would like to view the exhibition outside these days/hours contact Bronwyn Silver on 54751089.

Upcoming exhibition: Studio Paradiso printmakers


Part of Arts Open 2016 Open Studios
Newstead Railway Arts Hub, Dundas Street, Newstead

Exhibition Opening: 19 March 2016 by Melissa Proposch at 2.00 pm
All Welcome

Open: March 12, 13, 14,
March 19, 20 and
March 26, 27, 2016

10.00 am to 4.00 pm each day

About seven kilometres from Newstead on the Newstead Creswick Rd., tucked in the valley, are a Catholic church, some houses, and a red brick (ex) Primitive Methodist church with blue doors guarded by Italian pencil pines. A building where local communities met for decades to dance, talk about local matters, celebrate births, deaths and marriages, and play tennis on the courts behind the building. A place like many others in rural areas of Australia.

For the past fourteen years it’s been Diana Orinda Burns’ printmaking studio, Studio Paradiso. During these years Diana has run printmaking classes and courses, and consultancies for printmakers from all over Australia. The participants in these activities range from beginners to professionals preparing for exhibitions.
Diana has printed works for John Olsen, Tommy Watson, Mrs Bennett, Adam Cullen, David Larwill, Julian Meagher, Jasper Knight, Rhys Lee, Sam Leach, and James Drinkwater, among others.

Thus the building that’s home to Studio Paradiso stays true to its original purposes: a place where a community of artists and printmakers meet and practise.

Artists from Diana’s classes have exhibited as groups or individuals during the Castlemaine Festival over these years, independently in commercial galleries, and in the Arts Open Visual Arts Festival held in years alternate to the Castlemaine Festival: this year in the community Railway Arts Hub in Newstead.

If you’re driving through the Sandon valley to or from Newstead look out for Studio Paradiso. Like many similar buildings in rural areas of Australia it’s associated with many local stories and activities. You might also imagine the artists at work in Studio Paradiso: their conversations and collaborations, including their accounts of problems shared and solved, and their responses to Diana’s guidance and suggestions about directions and possibilities in their work. And, of course, the cakes, cups of tea, eclectic music and roaring winter fires that fuel the artists. One problem yet to be solved is how to get Diana away from her teaching and supervising the presses so that she can enjoy and finish her cup of tea.

– Richard Sullivan