Briag Art Gallery’s Vanishing Point

The 'Vanishing Point' exhibition will launch tomorrow (May 11). This artwork is titled 'Whoop - Whoop' by Annabel Nowlan. Art: Contributed

HOUSED in the charming, rustic gallery opposite the town’s historical hotel, the Briagolong Art Gallery is a popular weekend drawcard.

Tomorrow (May 11) the opening of the much-anticipated exhibition Vanishing Point – the mixed media work by Annabel Nowlan and Maria Fitzgerald is set to take place.

The two artists and close friends have produced a visually stunning exhibition.

Ms Nowlan began making art in the late 1980s. Since then, she has exhibited extensively in Sydney, Melbourne, regional galleries in New South Wales and Victoria, the United States, as well as Paris, France.

Descended from a pioneer Irish farming family, she grew up in south-western New South Wales, where before she pursued her career in art, she and her sister ran the family farm.

Ms Nowlan has always been inspired by the patterns, colours and moods of the Australian rural landscape and her affinity with it.

“These mixed media compositions celebrate the rich vocabulary and nuances of the tamed and untamed environment and comment on our often-vexed relationship with it,” she said.

The exhibition’s title ‘Vanishing Point’, alludes to her fascination with marks upon the landscape, such as the slowly disappearing signs of the endeavour and toil of earlier generations.

The artist uses abstract motifs such as sheep tracks and fence lines and incorporates materials such as rusty iron and Verdigris copper to convey the sense of human struggle against adversity.

Ms Nowlan’s work is represented in a range of public galleries, as well as numerous corporate and private collections in Australia, the United Kingdom and the US.

Ms Fitzgerald comes from an artistic Melbourne family. She studied drawing at the Victorian College of the Arts and went on to work with various mediums, including printmaking, oil and acrylic painting.

Last year, Ms Fitzgerald’s monoprint won the Pat Water’s Prize for Best Gippsland work in the 2023 Gippsland Print Award.

For this show, she has taken a bold new direction, making works that use pumice – a volcanic rock dust – mixed with acrylic paint, giving the works a rough, textured surface and intense colours.

They reveal her inspiration from her surroundings – the stately ancient redgums and dark brooding forest. In some of her work we get glimpses of mysterious figures disappearing into the landscape.

The exhibition ‘Vanishing Point’ opens at 3pm on Saturday, May 11, and is on show until Saturday, June 11.

The Briagolong Art Gallery is open Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 4pm, or by appointment by phoning 0429 196 269. Find them on Facebook and Instagram @briagolongartgallery