Craft artists are taking the stage again at The Gallery in Mogo, with free-spirited Moruya artist, Hazel Hofman, featured for the month of July into August.
Hazel revels in using texture, colour, fibre, hand-made paper and paint to create her fascinating variety of craftwork, and she is also a dab hand at painting and printmaking.
The Gallery is showcasing her imagination “running hot” with assemblage sculpture, spun fleece, felted fabrics, woven baskets, fun brooches, and jewellery made from found objects.
One of the most beautiful works on display is an elegant, two-toned grey, felted shawl, and another is a spring scarf made from a cleverly looped skein of multi coloured, spun wool.
Originally from the UK, Hazel arrived in Sydney in her teens.
She loved art but eventually work and the responsibilities of raising a family restricted Hazel’s opportunity to continue with her passion.
Following retirement Hazel became involved with Art Central and the Eurobodalla Fibre and Textile Art Group (EFTAG).
She says her work with textiles “kicked the whole thing off from there and I embraced the creative process”.
Not that her carefully planned projects progress as smoothly as expected.
She says, “I often find I take off in an unprecedented direction and the end result is usually a surprise”.
She calls it “going with the flow”.
This year she has been working with found objects.
“I don’t like anything going to waste. I have been using up my stash of materials to weave large, multi-coloured laundry baskets,” she said.
Formed into the circular, cone like shapes, these baskets have proved very popular at The Gallery.
Another example of recycling is her use of five python skins shed and collected on Hazel’s farm.
“I love the translucent, elastic quality of the python skin and how stretching it over a shape will exploit and enhance its diamond patterns.”
In an extraordinary bust of a woman, the skins have been stretched and glued over a head built from papier-mache and coloured tissue paper on a wire armature. It is finished with a hairline defined by plaited silk scarves, a flourish of emu feathers and a crown of second hand brass and coloured buttons sourced from the ESC Buy Back Centre or donated by friends.
Also on the walls are Hazel’s collage of an old church made with her own hand-made paper, a watercolour of an old farm truck and a concertina shaped, coloured woodcut print.
The Gallery is a co-operative venture of the Creative Arts Batemans Bay Society Incorporated (CABBI), a society open to local arts and crafts practitioners. People interested in finding out more about CABBI should drop in to The Gallery, Mogo or phone 02 4474 2243.