With the social side of life slowly disappearing, and it's been going downhill for a long time, I thought this exhibition would be a great chance to give the Bendigo Art Society and the cafe a boost.Chris Moule, artist.
Artist Chris Moule's latest exhibition, A Brush with Nature, hopes to drive foot traffic to a central Bendigo cafe amid the social challenges of coronavirus and bans on large gatherings.
Cortille, located in Lyttleton Terrace, will be home to an array of Mr Moule's artworks, from watercolours to oil paintings and drawings, for the next two months.
As a realist artist, Mr Moule's love of landscape and nature is reflected in his extensive catalogue of works.
"In Cortille, there is an evening scene of Lake Eildon and some smaller works depicting kangaroos and emus," he said.
Mr Moule's passion for the arts was fostered at an early age.
His father was a scenic artist at Covent Garden in London and for the famous D'Oyly Carte Opera Company.
"I love to paint en plein air and explore subjects in a range of mediums, which include oil, pen and ink, acrylic, pastel and watercolour," Mr Moule said.
The Australian landscape is continually inspiring an artist who has dedicated himself to the trade for decades.
A member of the Bendigo Art Society, Mr Moule has received numerous accolades, including winning Bendigo's 'Art in the Street' competition.
His pen and ink depiction of McClure's Bridge is on permanent display at the Castlemaine Art Gallery, where he has done what he does best - put nature in a frame.
Mr Moule hopes for A Brush with Nature will have an impact locally.
"With the social side of life slowly disappearing, and it's been going downhill for a long time, I thought this exhibition would be a great chance to give the Bendigo Art Society and the cafe a boost," he said.
With work housed in private collections across the globe from Poland to Singapore, his art depicting Australian landscapes is what he is renowned for.
"I was commissioned to paint 17 pictures that went over to Poland as Christmas presents and I've had a customer from Singapore buy several miniature works," Mr Moule said.
Sharing his artist talents has been a passion of Mr Moule's and something he has actively sought to do throughout his career.
"I have demonstrated and taught in schools, retirement homes, shopping centres and art society meetings.
Apart from Fine Arts, Mr Moule is an avid photographer and enjoys gardening, bushwalking, tennis, badminton, dancing and singing.
With the Bendigo Art Gallery closed until further notice and the La Trobe Art Institute closed until July 1, the arts, like many industries, is facing a period of uncertainty.
With that, comes the opportunity to innovate, according to La Trobe Art Institute's senior curator Kent Wilson.
"We are looking to find other way to present art and how we can harness digital platforms to do this to entertain our audiences," Mr Wilson said.
"There are potential opportunities to show works in a different light and even broaden our audience.
"With potentially more people looking at ways to entertain themselves, there might be some broader benefits of being innovative in this space."
The postponement of exhibitions and artistic opportunities will have impacts on central Victorian artists, with a number of cancellations already confirmed.
"I think all artists will be impacted this year because of a number of show cancellations," Mr Moule said.
"The only places people will be able to go will be those that have small crowds, such as Cortille.
Maintaining the livelihoods of artists, where possible, is a focus of the La Trobe Art Institute.
"We are trying to ensure consistent remuneration for our artists so they aren't left short.
"Artists that we committed to paying, we are finding ways to ensure we can commit to those projects and just change the timeframe," Mr Wilson said.
With exhibition planning taking place months in advance, some of La Trobe Art Institute's shows will have to be moved to 2021.
"Other shows have been moved from the front half of the year to the back half of the year," Mr Wilson said.
The Bendigo Art Society, which Mr Moule is a member of, will continue to meet at the Mandurang Hall on every second Tuesday of the month.
It is a multi faceted group that works across a range of mediums.
Mr Moule's exhibition, A Brush with Nature, is showing at Cortille, 322 Lyttleton Terrace, Bendigo from 8am until 3pm, daily, with all exhibits for sale.