WAACI’s ‘home’ is the Anglican Church Hall on the corner of Dalgarno & Cowper Streets, Coonabarabran.
Gatherings are held every Thursday from 9.00am in summer and 9.30am winter until closing, usually around 2pm, although some may linger a little longer.
Meetings are on the 4th Thursday every month at 10.30am .
This hall is airy and well lit and offers a great storage area with sturdy trestle tables and a well-equipped kitchen. With an air-conditioner and a gas space heater the room is comfortable both summer and winter. It has often been the scene of hilarious occasions along with more serious application to productive days. Whatever, they are always a bright and friendly bunch ready to welcome new chums and help them settle in.
THE WAACI STORY
WAACI holds an Annual Art & Craft Exhibition in middle to late October. This is a great display of local talent and regularly draws entries as far away as Queensland, South Australia and Victoria and sometimes even further afield. The Exhibition opens with an entertaining preview night and continues daily 10am to 6pm for four days.
The craft and art are housed in separate rooms with space to meander or linger. This event, previously staged for many years in the local small drama hall, has now moved to the much roomier Coonabarabran Town Hall. This then allows for the displays to be more spread out and presents a much more attractive spectacle.
The ARTS EXPO evolved in 2007 to become an important adjunct of the Annual event. To read more go to The ARTS EXPO’s own page.
WAACI can hold two open days a year.
These open days give the locals a chance to mingle with the artists and craftists, watch them at work, browse displays and make purchases from the trading table all washed down with a delicious morning tea. Additionally, several workshops with experienced and talented art tutors are held several times a year. These are made available to members at a greatly reduced fee. Dubbo professional artist Peter Mortimore was a much-valued regular who generously worked in a mentoring capacity with our group. Other artist/tutors of note have been Wendy Jennings (Painting), David McBride (Painting), Gay Campbell (Drawing), Judy Shalhoub (Painting),
Sue Harvey-Walker (Lead lighting).
See COMING EVENTS for dates.
Whilst painting or drawing workshops
have predominated in the past WAACI look forward to staging more craft workshops to accommodate the interests of our growing members needs. The craft members are probably the fastest growing element at the present time.
WAACI have some very talented and accomplished artists
on our books……..
Rita England uses watercolour, oils, pastels, charcoal, and pencil in her artwork and is known for her exquisite orchids and lovely landscapes.
Rita has won many prizes over the years and has received the Acquisitive Award twice. Rita was the 2008 winner with her picture called “Smoko”. Rita also makes lovely gift cards and is a very accomplished amateur photographer winning lots of national and international prizes. Rita has been the WAACI Treasurer for many years and is a real treasure herself as she performs many other duties outside this job description.
The late Elaine Worrel liked to create vibrant abstracts in pastel but was accomplished in all other media and styles as well. In 1998 Elaine received the Acquisitive prize for her lovely painting “Creek at Sunset”, which hangs in the Warrumbungle Shire chambers in Coonabarabran. We mention Elaine because it was she who so generously created the insignia/logo that we proudly use seen at the top of this page. She will always be sadly missed.
Maureen Lindsay, a true water colourist, has recently emerged a very competent prizewinner with abstract themes. Her landscapes though are in true watercolour traditional style. But, Maureen’s charming “chook” paintings are always much admired and swiftly snapped up. Clever Maureen carries this theme across to teatowels and aprons as well. Latterly including cows and geese in her themes.
Noeline Munns always excels at pastel and watercolour with old homesteads and woolsheds a specialty. Many gravitate to her beautiful paintings and are held in thrall by the historical accuracy. Noeline’s works too wind up in pride of place adorning home walls as well as the Shire Council’s walls. Noeline too likes to ply the needle producing lovely embroidery and superbly knitted garments.
The late Janet Head, another all rounder, emerged as a talented pastellist choosing interesting and unusual subjects. Janet, was a long time member who stood as President of WAACI for 3 years. Outback hats and boots were often featured. Janet’s recent interest was portraiture but she was inclined to try her hand at most genres, styles and methods with great success. Janet also liked to make gift cards using many different styles and methods. Janet sadly passed away late 2013 she will be missed.
The late Sue Graham an accomplished artist and major prizewinner was a well known local identity. This talented artist was well renowned in other art circles further abroad. Sue liked to create large vistas, dancing subjects and indigenous themes while drawing in charcoal was her forte. A three times Acquisitive Award winner, Sue’s works are always much admired. Teaching art and yoga were her loves. Her work is often found on display for sale at Cardians, a popular local Coonabarabran Cafe. We have lost a treasure from our community.
Norma Roberts’ tries to hide her light under a bushel. She likes to use oil, producing attractive landscapes and still life canvases that surprise her (but not us) by doing so well. Norma a valued member (formerly President of WAACi for some years), is active on many community committees and is dedicated to the RDA.
Dell Stewart comes from Binnaway and masters every medium she has tried and is so modest about her abilities. Her forte is attractive landscapes and she has a wonderful eye for a scene that works. Dell is also another TAFE student.
Melva Thompson often wins prizes with her lovely water colour miniatures (as well as her exquisite crochet and delicate knitting). A long time member she is another quiet achiever.
Janet Smith is a supreme artist that draws much admiration for her wonderful light filled technique. Her seaside and farm scenes are very popular and swiftly snapped up. Janet is another regular prize winner and also has pictures hanging in the council chambers.
Barbara Broeksema is a perfectionist who paints mostly in watercolours and pastels and produces lots of lovely works with a passion for portrait and animals. Barbara too makes lots of intricate tapestries and cross stitch pictures which she usually gives away to friends and is an accomplished knitter. Barbara too wins awards for her crafts.Barbara too did the TAFE Fine Arts Course Cert II in Visual Arts & Contemporary Craft. Barbara was president 2011 t0 2015/16.
Bruce Breckenridge is another member who attended the TAFE art course in 2008/9 and is emerging as a painstaking painter of attractive landscapes using different mediums. His delicate watercolours are always much admired.
Monica Barker enjoys symogrophy (which is sewing lovely patterns with thread onto gift cards) and giving them to her friends on celebration days. Monica also writes the verses she inserts as well. She also enjoys knitting and crocheting delightful garments for her grandchildren and great grandchildren. Monica also enjoys painting and drawing.
Lorraine Renneberg makes wonderful garments with her own spun wool, she also felts marvellous hats, skirts and shawls, embroidery is another of her passions. Lorraine also attends a creative art class at the local TAFE. Lorraine is accomplished at many crafty pursuits and has been active in the local CWA. for many years.
Most of the above are, or have been in the past, regular and multiple prizewinners at most of the surrounding local Agricultural shows and Art Exhibitions. Five of the above named have received the Acquisitive Award, a couple more than once. There are also those souls who create for their own individual pleasure and do not exhibit at all and yes we do have some men on our books as well. Over the last couple of years Tuesday has evolved as an Art only day while Thursday remains as a mixed day but does seem to lean heavily towards craft members.
A recent past craft passion was embroidered “Ladies”, crinoline or otherwise, with many joining in that lovely pursuit. These were such charming visions of yesteryear usually produced in the form of wall hangings, doyleys and cushion covers. That year members brought in lovely ‘olde’ pieces of embroidery and such that were handed down in the family adding to the nostalga. The resultbeing that this trend was enjoyed by all.
Some members like to do cross-stitch and embroidery, others ply the needle with tapestry while nearly all crochet or knit. One lady tats beautifully while another draws admiration for her heirloom crocheted tablecloth. Patchwork fads come and go as does spinning and felting.
Scrapbooking is always an interest of some while jewellery making has also been in vogue. Hand made cards have always been quite popular. These cards can use stamping or cut outs or symography (a type of embroidery similar to the nail and string pictures of the seventies). These often become more popular around Christmas time. Like the arts members, these crafty women all help each other to learn techniques, read patterns and correct anomalies. The craft ladies are multi-talented, very prolific and are also hiding multiple prizewinners too numerous to mention. Some cross over easily from art to craft and back again.
Seasons dictate passions……….Winter time usually brings out the crochet and knitting needles. While patterns are often exchanged, sometimes there is a scarf or a throw rug pattern that is widely popular and many try helping each other out with any intricacies ofdesign that may stump the would be creators.
Whilst talent will emerge wherever it hides, most members are just happily doing their own thing in like company. Nevertheless, everyone who joins has something to share, after all, creativity is often reciprocal if not contagious – just like the laughter we hear each week.