Art is Alive in Ashburton




Art is flourishing in Ashburton, with boosts from two energetic organisations: the Ashburton Art Gallery and the Ashburton Society of Arts.

The Ashburton Society of Arts owns a lovely old villa, known as the “Short Street Studio”. This was modernised and extended three years ago to house workshops, exhibitions and painters working in all media.

Groups paint together on Mondays and Wednesdays, every Saturday classes are held for beginners and there’s a regular life class.

A recent addition is a sales gallery with a display that rotates with the seasons and presents the best work of members.

Among the tutors who have run classes in Short Street Studio are Jacky Pearson and Ben Ho.

The membership includes many from outside Ashburton – folk from rural areas and towns as far away as Timaru. Many pay their subscription specifically so they can enter work in the Society’s annual major exhibition. This event shows 500 entries, including both art and craft and draws interest from all over New Zealand. Revered watercolourists among the Society’s members are Richard Bolton, George Coppard, Margaret Digby, Ngaio McKee, Susie Millichamp, Sue Simpson, Margaret Trolove and Ben Woollcombe - to name but a few. New members are welcomed and encouraged.

The Ashburton Gallery also works to foster the arts. This Council building, costing over $9,000,000, houses the local museum on the ground floor and the art gallery above. Each floor will have both static and rotating exhibitions.

For further information
on the Ashburton Society
of Arts contact Ngaio
McKee (03) 3084533

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