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Janette Bird Solo Art Exhibition

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by Fiona Anderson (subscribe)
A Melbourne based writer who is a travel junkie, dedicated foodie and emerging photographer.
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Celebrating the pleasures of the kitchen garden
Award winning Melbourne artist Janette Bird is holding her first solo exhibition at the Residents Gallery, Montsalvat, from Wednesday 13th April to Sunday 8th May. The exhibition features a series of botanical paintings, celebrating the pleasures of the kitchen garden.

Janette Bird Solo Art Exhibition
Janette Bird's first solo exhibition celebrates the pleasures of the garden. Pictured here 'From the Persimmon Tree' (oil on canvas)


The artist has drawn inspiration from the Song of Solomon and in particular this passage:

Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field. Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see if the vine flourish, whether the tender grape appear, and the pomegranates bud forth: there will I give thee my loves. at our gates are all manner of pleasant fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved. (Excerpts from Song of Solomon, 7-11, 12, 13)

Says Janette: "Botany offers a subject matter where I can bring together my interests in botanical watercolour, still-life oil painting and drawing. The Song of Solomon seems fitting because it elevates the concept of the kitchen garden; it puts into words the sensual pleasure we experience when we anticipate harvesting and eating beautiful food and how it is heightened when we share that enjoyment with our loved ones."

"When I render the fruit or vegetable I can't help but put that romantic association into the work."

Janette Bird Solo Art Exhibition
The sensual pleasure of harvesting and eating food from our garden is the inspiration for this exhibition. Pictured here 'Persimmon, Diospyros kaki' (watercolour)


Working in oils, watercolour and graphite Janette explores the benefits and limitations of each medium. She capitalises on the viscosity and intensity of colour inherent in oil paint to relay the fresh immediacy of her sensory response to the still life. In contrast, her botanical watercolours contain detail and scientific accuracy.

"In my work, I also observe the growth cycle of plants, sometimes including their decomposition. This is an interesting study, and reminds us of our own life-cycle."

Janette Bird Solo Art Exhibition
Janette explores the growth cycle of plants. Pictured here 'Perfectly cured and ready to use' (water-soluble graphite on yupo)


The exhibition opening is being held from 5.00pm to 6.30pm on Saturday 16th April. All welcome. Light refreshments will be provided.

Montsalvat is located at 7 Hillcrest Avenue, Eltham and is open seven days from 9.00am - 5.00pm.

General admission to Montsalvat - which gives visitors access to the extensive grounds and all galleries - is $14 - adults, $10 - concession. Admission to the exhibition is free.

For further information, please call Montsalvat on (03) 9439 7712.
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Why? View this exhibition of stunning works that celebrate the pleasures of the kitchen garden.
When: Montsalvat is open 7 days from 9.00am - 5.00pm; the exhibition runs from 13th April to 5th May
Phone: (03) 9439 7712
Where: Residents Gallery, Montsalvat, 7 Hillcrest Avenue, Eltham
Cost: $14 adults, $10 concession for general admission; free to attend the exhibition and opening
Your Comment
There is no doubting Janette's talent. The examples you've shown in the article are superb.
by Gayle Beveridge (score: 3|8042) 1696 days ago
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