West Australian professional artist Sue Hartley introduces
herself to the Wakatipu art community with her first
exhibition, ''NZ + OZ'', opening to the public in the
Cloakroom Gallery on March 21. Photo by James Beech.
An Australian artist launching her debut exhibition in
Queenstown on Friday says she fell love with the resort even
before she landed.
West Australian Sue Hartley has called the Wakatipu her home
for the past three months, a decision she made after visiting
a friend in Arrowtown.
''I fell in love with the place from the plane,'' she said.
''I saw the view and thought, 'How gorgeous to live here'.''
Ms Hartley joined the Queenstown Art Society and successfully
applied for studio space to work.
''It's wonderful to be involved with the ladies there. They
are so lovely. I asked about an exhibition to introduce
myself to the arts community.''
The art and design graduate of the Royal Melbourne Institute
of Technology became a professional artist about 15 years
She has exhibited at venues including Matilda's Winery and
Gallery in Denmark, Western Australia, and Mallorca, Spain,
and sold to collectors on both sides of the Tasman, plus
Spain, Singapore, the United States, the United Kingdom and
Ireland, she said.
She described her style as ''contemporary surreal'' with
multiple layers of meaning.
She works from memory on three canvases at the same time and
artworks take months to finish.
Ms Hartley said she selected about 20 oil paintings, mostly
landscapes and of varying canvas sizes, for her Queenstown
debut, titled ''NZ + OZ''.
She will be available to discuss her work and meet art
enthusiasts at the public launch in the Cloakroom Gallery, on
the corner of Ballarat and Stanley Sts, on Friday at 6pm to
Asked what impression she wished visitors would take away
from NZ + OZ, Ms Hartley said: ''I hope they find a piece
they absolutely fall in love with; an original piece no-one's