Thanks to a generous grant from ArtsNSW, ten painters from across the Western Region of NSW are exhibiting their works in the General Hospital Cafeteria at Orange Health Service until mid 2014.

The exhibition A Clear View is an initiative of Mental Health and presents positive visions of the landscape of the region. This theme also alludes to a sense of personal clarity or wellbeing.

All of the participating artists work with landscape elements and have been asked to respond to the environment in which they live in a positive and personal way. They were free to be as representational, expressive or abstract as they wished.

The final images were installed in Mid December 2012 and are bringing substantial colour and interest to a very public area of the hospital. 

For contact information for the artists below please refer to the Arts OutWest Cultural Directory. 

Statements by each of the artists are below.

Installation of the ten artworks installed in the General Hospital cafeteria in December 2012.


Jaq Davies

Jaq Davies studied painting, sculpture and printmaking at the National Art School, Darlinghurst, Sydney.

She has exhibited in group and solo exhibitions in Australia, Peru and the Philippines where she had a studio as part of the Australia Councils Artist in Residency Programme. Jaq has been living in the Central West since 2004.
Landscape and our place within it have always been major themes in my artwork.
My painting for this project is titled  "Finding True North ". 

It is a painting about place and our life journeys a map...... a search for what matters.

Joy Engelman

Born with paint in her blood and a brush in her hand" my mother would say, I have spent over half a century in the pursuit of an arts life! My passion for painting and the outback has no bounds. Art is the constant golden thread that weaves the pieces of my life together.

I aspire to portray a new Australian style, drawing on inspiration from modern and contemporary artists as I explore the outback landscape in my various journeys both outward and inward.

To fully express the vast chaos and infinite richness of life I have explored various painting techniques with different ideas and subjects... however, acrylics on canvas and paper allow the works to develop rapidly as once I have 'dreamed' the work, I need to get it out quickly.

I have passed on my techniques through teaching and mentoring and it is always satisfying to find an artist who has been inspired by something I may have done in the past.


Catherine Hale

Graduating from Orange Tafe in 2007, Catherine has been exhibiting widely in both solo and group exhibitions throughout the Central West of NSW. Amongst her achievements, Catherine was selected for the Portia Geach Memorial Portrait Award as well as being a finalist twice in the Country Energy Landscape Prize. She conducts workshops in schools and community centres in the Bathurst region, her particular interest being in environmental workshops. 

Primarily I am a figurative artist, drawing figures from the imagination and setting them down in a familiar environment. More and more though, I am turning to landscape and still life painting where the object or scene in front of me is recorded. It is an entirely different process, being true to that which is observed rather than constructing something from nothing.  I am not as interested in realism as attempting to achieve credibility, whether it is for the human form, or for perspective in nature.  I employ bold colours and juxtapose them against greys for maximum effect. Shadow plays a strong part in my work too, where the figures or objects are securely grounded into their surroundings. I have been developing a series of work reflecting the urban landscape of the country town in which I live, with its old buildings, and grand street trees.

Trevor Hood

Born in Sydney, Trevor studied to become a graphic designer and worked for a number of years in the book publishing industry as a designer and illustrator. Since having moved to Orange in 1996 he has taught design and art at Tafe and at Charles Sturt University while also painting and exhibiting at various galleries in Sydney and the Central West. In 2010 Trevor graduated with a Master of Visual and Performing Arts from Charles Sturt University.

My artworks are snapshots that can be seen to give some shape to unnoticed shadows and to unearth the barely perceived. Generally I work in acrylic on canvas and develop the paintings in various different ways. Some are created from charcoal sketches that have been drawn using the natural world as a model and some are built up with multiple paint layers that come together as an imagined abstract. 

These paintings are reactions to natural landscape, colour and form. Mostly, what we experience during the day is only dimly registered in a vague sense. I try to seek my inspiration from these experienced colours and forms that are around us and from them to create visual dramas.

David Isbester

David currently lives and works at the River Bank Gallery in the main street of the small country town of Canowindra NSW Australia. He studied with David B Wilson at Charles Sturt University, Bathurst NSW.
He has lived and worked in Canowindra NSW for the past ten years. He is best known for capturing light and colour in his streetscapes, still life and studies of the female form. David is considered a tonalist painter but he is also strongly influenced by a uniquely Australian mark making tradition.

My preferred medium is oil on canvas. I would describe myself as a tonalist painter with subjects ranging from landscapes, still life, figures to abstract works. I work from life and in my studio.

David Lake

David Lake is a self-taught artist whose interest in painting developed whilst a school student. After leaving school he began work in the finance industry and continued to paint in his spare time. Then in 2002, after 17 years in full time employment, David chose to pursue his art on a fulltime basis – a decision that he has not regretted. He has won numerous prizes and commendations in recent years and is a Fellow of the Royal Art Society of NSW. Born in Sydney he now resides in the historic village of Newbridge.
My interest is in painting the Australian landscape in a representational style. I predominantly work in oil, both on location and in the studio, and strive to capture something of the feel of the place – its light and atmosphere.  Generally I prefer to work at a painting a day at a time over a few months, or longer, which enables me to achieve a finished work I am happy to exhibit.


Aida Pottinger

My images explore place and belonging through the landscape forms which are part of my journey. They reflect a past ridden with war and migration, as my mother fled from Latvia to England where I was born. Life brought me to Australia and in these images I feel through the medium of paint the extremes of dark and light, warmth and coldness, clarity and obfuscation. They invoked the descriptive response from Peter Haynes, Director of ACT Museums and Galleries in 2009 “A highly atmospheric, dream-like presentation with an air of mystery and nostalgia that captures the veils of memory.”

I work in oils, pastels, inks,acrylics, shellac and chalk. Starting with a blank canvas  I build layers of paint, ink, charcoal and pastel. Decisions are made from what happens on the surface during this process  - sometimes the image is light and raw while at other times  images emerge from multiple layers. Nothing is planned, however I do use memories, and photographs in some works to guide the process. Other works are done in the landscape where I tend to use quick drying mediums.
Other genres I cover are life drawing and portraits.

Ruth Stone

I moved to the Central West in 2003 having just graduated with my MFA (Research) from the College Of Fine Arts, UNSW. My undergraduate training was completed at The National Art School, Darlinghurst, Sydney. I have worked for TAFE Western for the past 10 years as a teacher and course coordinator in Art and Design and in that time have also worked as a project manager & Head teacher, Arts and IT Bathurst. I've been included as a finalist in the Skillset Flannery Art Prize 2012, The Country Energy Prize 2009, The Portia Geach Portrait Prize and the Dobell Drawing Prize at the Art Gallery of NSW. My work is in the collections of the ING Bank Poland Warsaw and the Orange Regional Gallery.

This work is about the land with in which we live and its boundaries metaphorical and man-made. The under painting speaks of shifting boundaries, order and chaos and how man tries to control, contain his natural environment, yet the planetary forces are beyond his control. This planet is a reflection of us, working with us or beyond us and as we drive to conquer we reap, burn, dam, fence, make mines and from this we need to learn about our limitations, learn to nurture, create and care. Take time and be still. 

A clear view comes when the wind blows away the dust and clarity, healing and regeneration are brought about. With care and empathy for ourselves, and our environment we can encourage growth. This is work for our planet, which can heal and provide all that we need for our future.

Jane Tonks

A desire for a change of career direction led me to enrol in the Diploma of Fine Arts through Tafe Western in 2010, receiving my qualification at the end of 2011. I have participated in many exhibitions, curated a ‘Three Generations’ family exhibition and held my first solo in 2011. In 2012, I was awarded a $10,000 ‘Artstart’ Grant through the Australia Council for the Arts, to assist in establishing a professional arts practice. 

My artwork is an expression and extension of self, a form of meditation, a passionate lifestyle choice. In my painting, I want the viewer to experience being part of the landscape, with a sense of deep belonging and spiritual connection. The works are an examination of the fragility and vulnerability of the natural environment and its dual capacity for resilience, endurance and strength.  There are often subtle narratives within the works, linking these qualities of the natural environment to the mirrored human experience. In the presence of landscape, a powerful response is evoked when the mind is stilled and the sacred is allowed to reveal itself in the interconnection and oneness of all things. 

Heather Vallance

Heather is a studio based artist in Canowindra, NSW. She has been in numerous exhibitions and her work is in both private and public collections.

"Growing up on a farm and within a small farming community has provided the foundation for the way I approach my artwork and life in general. Consisting of wanderings and observations of the natural world around me plus the interaction and understanding of different characters and people that often make up a community. A sense of the importance and cohesiveness of strong and individual women was developed and plays an important role in my subject matter and resulting artwork.

Much of my work is informed by attempting to draw and paint the human figure in it's many forms, and  the relationship of people to their environments. I believe the environments we inhabit physically, socially and emotionally, manifests in who we are.

Lately, I have been exploring the relationships humans have with animals and creatures we share our lives with and the parallels of dispositions they have with our human condition.

Drawing is the foundation of my art practice, working in charcoal, graphite, mixed media and oil paints.