A much loved award-winning Perth Hills artist, mother of four and friend to many, Valerie McDonald has left behind a bold, inspiring and colourful legacy, reflected in the moving exhibition “Valerie McDonald Retrospective 1933−2016” opening at the at the Zig Zag Gallery on Sunday 15 April 2017 at 2:00pm.
Curated by her eldest daughter, fellow iconic Perth Hills artist Mikaela Castledine, the exhibition showcases a lifetime of passion and dedication for her art, capturing some of the highlights of Valerie’s diverse career with pastels, drawing, oil painting and textiles.
Over her working life Valerie exhibited in many of the important galleries of Western Australia including Skinner Galleries, Perth Galleries, New Collectables, Gunyulgup, Gomboc Gallery and the Mundaring Art Centre. She was a strong supporter of the Zig Zag Gallery in Kalamunda and was a founding member of the Kalamunda Open studio group.
From the 1950s to the 2010s Valerie won many awards including major regional prizes such as the Albany Art Awards, Kalgoorlie Art Awards, Katanning Art Awards and many others as well as showing in many local shire and school exhibitions including winning the Bassendean Art Prize in 2008.
Mikaela Castledine said, “To honour her life’swork and creativity in an exhibition, in her favourite part of the world, surrounded by her family and friends, seems a fitting tribute to this amazing woman.”
All of Valerie’s four children have become artists, diversifying through fine art, from photography, painting, drawing, printmaking and sculpture into the performing arts of music, theatre and comedy, as well as writing and poetry.
Mikaela Castledine said, “While it is not true to say she taught us everything we know – she probably knew more than we could ever learn from her and, in our branching out, we have mastered techniques and explored ideas which she may never have touched on − but it was her example which led us, and her creativity which nurtured us, and she was incredibly proud of all of us.”
“Valerie maintained her art practice throughout her life with many changes of themes and mediums. She had a strong sense of colour and form and her bold landscapes and naïve figures are recognisable through all her pastels, her textile works, her drawing and paintings.”
The Valerie McDonald Retrospective exhibition continues until Sunday 23 April 2017.
The Zig Zag Gallery is located at 50 Railway Road, Kalamunda.
For further information contact the Zig Zag Cultural Centre on 9257 9998, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.zzcc.com.au.
A special blog site has also been set up for the viewing and purchasing of Valerie McDonald’s work -https://valeriemcdonaldartist.wordpress.com