Colonial Art at Seen@Swansea

Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Heritage & Historical, Lake Macquarie ~ by Press on  4 Jun 2019

Discover art and nature from colonial NSW at SEEN@Swansea’s latest exhibition.

The historic journey of Harriet and Helena Scott is recorded through illustrations of Australian moths and butterflies at SEEN@Swansea’s latest exhibition Transformations: Art of the Scott Sisters.

With their collecting boxes, notebooks and paintbrushes, Harriet and Helena Scott became two of 19th-century Australia’s most prominent natural history illustrators.

Lake Macquarie City Council’s Manager Art, Culture and Tourism Jacqui Hemsley said the exhibition is a great historic journey to share with the community through illustrations from these two Sydney born sisters. 

The Scott sisters were among the first to illustrate the life histories and immature stages of Australian moths and butterflies. Many of their scientific illustrations are still used by scientists today.

Helena and Harriet Scott were born in the 1830 a time where women were unable to pursue careers in science as they were excluded from universities and learned societies.

Their art works show examples of the sisters’ work, and the paintings feature caterpillars in life-like poses, gorgeous butterflies, native flowers and stunning landscapes,” Ms Hemsley said.

Transformations: Art of the Scott Sisters turns back the pages of the captivating story of two extraordinary women whose love of nature helps distinguish themselves within the male-dominated world of the 19th century science.

The exhibition runs from Saturday 8 June through to Sunday 20 July at SEEN@Swansea, located on the first-floor mezzanine at The Swansea Centre.

Upcoming events relating to the exhibition:

Water Colour Wonderland

Create a beautiful artwork using water-based materials while being inspired by the current SEEN@Swansea exhibition Transformations: Art of the Scott Sisters.

Swansea Library, SEEN@Swansea

Wednesday 17 July, 10am-noon

Tickets $15 per person, includes all materials and entry to SEEN@Swansea

Bookings essential

Suitable for ages 6-10 years

Watercolour Workshop: Natural History Illustration

In conjunction with the exhibition Transformations: Art of the Scott Sisters at SEEN@Swansea with Artist Tanya Hoolihan. Illustrate a small plate in a style reminiscent of the Scott sisters work. It will include a small plant specimen and accompanying butterfly with the focus on depicting the objects in fine detail. Achieve realistic results while learning about colour mixing and matching, glazing, and dry brush. Gain an understanding of capturing the true character of an object in your illustration and the essential elements of natural history illustration.

Swansea Library, SEEN@Swansea

Friday 19 July, 3-5pm

Bookings essential, $20 per person, includes all materials

Suitable for 16+

Transformations: Art of the Scott Sisters – After Hours

Get to know Australia’s most prominent 19th century natural history illustrators, Harriet and Helena Scott at SEEN@Swansea over a glass of wine, cheese, live music and while sketching some of your own butterflies. 

Swansea Library, SEEN@Swansea

Friday 19 July, 5–8pm

Bookings essential

Gold coin entry

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