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Your creative cure for 2019? | Creative Matakana

With rave reviews for its high-end arts workshops in May 2018, Creative Matakana has another remarkable line-up of tutors and workshops this year, but you’ll have to be quick—they’re selling out rapidly.


Just an hour north of Auckland, Matakana is known for its markets, wineries, boutiques, beaches and artist’s studios. Workshops mostly run over five days, but there are also some shorter courses. 2018 sculpture participant Rachel O’Malley said, “For me, it felt like you had immersed yourself in an art world that was really curated and thought-about in terms of your experience.” People also really liked the home-made biscuits.


Tutors include sculptor Jeff Thomson, writer Joe Bennett, watercolourist Bernadette Parsons and printmaker Mark Graver. There’s also wood sculpture with Louise McRae, Japanese textile art with Alysn Midgelow-Marsden, glass etching and vitreographs (printing from etched glass) with Elizabeth McClure, oral history with Judith Fyfe (pictured left) and making a Windsor chair (with hand tools only) with Richard Hare.


There are shorter courses too, including three one-day knife-making classes with Adam Fromholtz, a couple of two-day Shino ceramics workshops with Elena Renker, plus some special workshops inspired by the craft and culture of Japan. Sustainability and wabi sabi –finding beauty and authenticity in imperfection—is an important feature here.



Jo Kinross – Shibori


Try a craft day learning kintsugi (repairing broken ceramics with gold leaf) and furoshiki (creative wrapping with fabrics); a botanical day of sogetsu ikebana (a special type of Japanese floral arrangement), and a two-day workshop learning shibori indigo dyeing.


Other events include opening drinks at The Vivian gallery in Matakana, and the special participants’ dinner on the Thursday which is always fun. Two one-day Art and Architecture Tours, visiting artists and quirky homes on both coasts are booked out, but as with the sold-out courses, you can opt to join a wait-list.


Look out too for confirmation of a special finale event on Friday 10 May at Brick Bay: a panel of art experts including Scott Lawrie from The Vivian, gallerist Tim Melville, Stephanie Post from the Auckland Art Fair and others will discuss the big questions of NZ art.


Words — Kathy Hunter


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