EXPERT EYE: Ken Gailer, above with some of his artwork, and Pam Walpole, below, will judge this year’s Mary Valley Arts Festival.
EXPERT EYE: Ken Gailer, above with some of his artwork, and Pam Walpole, below, will judge this year’s Mary Valley Arts Festival. Contributed

230 artworks on display for Mary Valley Art Festival

JUDGES Pam Walpole and Ken Gailer will have a tough job choosing the winners at the Mary Valley Art Festival this week, with a bumper crop of entries in the annual art show at Imbil.

More than 30 youngsters have responded to the new $2000 Bush Haven Youth Award, entering 44 paintings for the sections up to 18 years.

Visitors will be able to enjoy more than 230 works entered by over 100 artists across the adult and youth sections.

This includes 40 entries for the $1500 open prize donated by Gympie's Bendigo Bank, with Animalia, Human Form and Landscape also attracting large numbers of entries.

But the judges are up for the challenge.

Since the first public showing of his work in 1980 at the Young Masters Gallery, Brisbane, Ken Gailer's intensely rewarding art career has seen him progress through various stages, exploring various styles.

Mr Gailer has held more than 30 solo and group exhibitions throughout Australia and his work forms part of corporate and private collections in Australia, England, America and Singapore.

Since 2009 he has exhibited his work internationally at Singapore's Red Sea Gallery where it attracts rave reviews. A large landscape in this latest series of work has been acquired for one of Singapore's largest and most important private art collections.

Mr Gailer will share the judging duties with Pam Walpole, whose creative practice has ranged from sculpture, painting and drawing to ephemeral installations in public places.

She chooses subjects from the global landscape - in a contemporary style and quite often with a strong environmental message inspired by devastating bushfires, floods or human-made disasters.

She has held 13 solo exhibitions which are the result of her travels, where she sketches for the pleasure of drawing, inspired by her surroundings, before putting paint to canvas once back in her studio.

Ms Walpole's commissions are artworks for hospitals and a project for "the j" Noosa to bring art to The Noosa Long Weekend Festival in July, in collaboration with another artist.

The Mary Valley Art Festival judging will be completed in time for the announcement of winners at the gala opening of the festival tomorrow at Imbil Public Hall. It starts at 6pm and is always entertaining with a chance to preview the exhibition and talk with artists.

Viewing continues to Sunday from 10am-3pm.

The Bush Haven Youth Art Awards presentation is at 1.30pm on Sunday, followed by the People's Choice Award presentation, wine and cheese event from 2pm.

Inquiries to Nicky Watson on 5484 3010 or visit maryvalleyartfestival.com.au or on Facebook.

Gympie Times


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