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The best art exhibitions to check out in The Murray this winter

Murray Art Museum Albury, Albury. Image credit: Visit Albury Wodonga

6 Jun 2023 by Mel Townsend

The best art exhibitions to check out in The Murray this winter

Calling all art lovers, budding artists, and appreciators of creative musings - there’s a flourishing art culture in the Murray River region waiting to be discovered.

From First Nations storytelling, to photographers, lino cutters, sculpture trails and interactive exhibitions, The Murray plays muse to a number of riveting exhibitions this winter.

Keep cosy inside or hit the outdoor trails and check out these art exhibitions.

Transmorgrification - Hyphen Wodonga Library Gallery

Closing Sunday 16 July

‘To change, or alter greatly’ - Transmorgrification is an interactive and immersive exhibition by Gav Barbey and Andrew Howie held at Hyphen - Wodonga Library Gallery.

You will become the artist in this exhibit, leaving your own mark among hundreds of others using coloured blocks of ice, inspired by Gav Barbey's Iceworks on paper. Choose a frozen ice block filled with a coloured pigment of your liking, add it to a space on the collaborative canvas and watch as the ice slowly melts (transmogrifies) and eventually dries into its own shape.

As more people add ice blocks, you’ll notice how the picture changes and the painting takes place, challenging how you think about change and celebrate all the things that make us individuals.

Currawa Crossing Art Exhibition - Corowa Art Space

Closing Sunday 9 July

On display at the Corowa Art Space, The Currawa Crossing Exhibition features artwork from Aboriginal artists in the Murray River region.

Showcasing vibrant and expressive artwork from Owen Lyons a Wiradjuri artist from Narrandera (Narrungdera), Elijah Ingram a Wiradjuri artist and Sonia Undy. Their works combine a variety of traditional and modern techniques including weaving, dot painting and abstractionism.

The exhibition is free to view, supported by Western Riverina Arts, and open Wednesday – Sunday.

What Remains - Murray Art Museum Albury

Closing Friday 30 June

Bringing together the works of fourteen artists, including six recently acquired by the museum What Remains is showing at the Murray Art Museum Albury.

The exhibition features a series of abstract sculptures by Wiradjuri artist Nicole Foreshew, titled Remain, moulded using clay and iron oxide, representing her deep connection to Ngurambanggu (Country) and kin.

Exploring more about the connection to land, impacts on the land and its people are also expanded on in the work of First Nation artists Michael Riley, Karla Dickens, Kevin Gilbert, Treahna Hamm and Hayley Millar Baker.

What Remains is curated as a reminder to consider our collective impact on the land and the legacy we wish to leave behind.

No Easy Answers - Murray Art Museum Albury

Closing Friday 16 July

Exploring art as a way of thinking No Easy Answers brings together six artists from across Australia and the United States showing at the Murray Art Museum Albury.

Each artist challenges us to consider how we come to know the things we know with the work displayed, stretching from traditional art mediums of sculpture, dance, and painting in new directions while others embrace newer techniques and technologies.

Everything from hands, bodies, paint, bronze, electronics, vaporisers and drones are used in the exhibition, journeying from what is real and what is imagined.

Feature Artists include, Ella Barclay (AU), Christopher Hanrahan (AU/USA), Vera Hong (AU), Tracey Moffatt (AU/USA), Vitche-Boul Ra (USA) and Wilmer Wilson IV (USA).

Birds in the Bush – Wacky Bird Gallery, Corowa

Closing Sunday 2 July

Featuring 14 new artworks, by Master Lino Cutter, Christine Upton, ‘Birds in the Bush’ Exhibition is showing at the Wacky Bird Gallery.

Each artwork is hand carved and depicts birds of the area in their natural habitats and incorporates the reuse of a previously carved block. All work showing is for sale and Christine is more than happy to walk you through the exhibit and explain the process of how the works were developed.

Looking Glass – Mildura Arts Centre

Closing Sunday 6 August

Showing at Mildura’s leading arts, culture and heritage hub – Mildura Arts Centre, Looking Glass features work from Waanyi artist, Judy Watson and Kokatha and Nukunu artist, Yhonnie Scarce.

Bringing together two of Australia’s most acclaimed contemporary artists, the exhibition is a love song and a lament for Country; a fantastical alchemy of the elemental forces of earth, water, fire and air.

Watson and Scarce express the inseparable oneness of Aboriginal people with Country, a familial relationship established for millennia.

Show Me The Story – Hyphen Wodonga Library Gallery

Closing Tuesday 1 August

Created by local artist Tim Rowston, Show Me The Story features a series of intriguing photographs linked to poetry and personal artifacts showing at the Hyphen - Wodonga Library Gallery.

All images were captured by Rowston along the south coast and Bindook Highlands of NSW, after the landscape was greatly affected by drought, a bushfire and rain events in 2020. Rowston invites the viewer to create connections between place, story and memory.

Milloo Dreaming (this time in a wetland) – Swan Hill Regional Art Gallery

Closing Sunday 30 July

Showing at the Swan Hill Regional Art Gallery, Milloo Dreaming (this time in a wetland) responds to the extraordinary rainfall and flooding that has replenished the floodplains in the Murray River region.

First Nations artists from the Swan Hill region reflect on the significance of these events with traditional weaving, drawings, paintings, sculptures, ceramics, historical artefacts and photography.

The exhibition encourages viewers to reflect on the deep connection between our First Nation’s people and the extensive network of rivers, creeks, billabongs, lakes and floodplains.

Follow The Murray's outdoor art trails

Mix up your gallery viewing with a breath of fresh air and get your step count up along these outdoor art walking and road trip trails.

Find the Wagirra Trail and Yindyamarra Sculpture Walk along the banks of the Murray River in Albury. The walk is 5km and features 15 sculptures crafted by Aboriginal artists tell age-old First Nations stories through contemporary art. Discover the artworks with a Wiradjuri guide or follow the trail on your own.

The Women's Auxiliary Australian Air Force Creek Walk (WAAAF) is set along the creek in Tocumwal. Follow the interpretive signage as the trail honours and celebrates the Women's Auxiliary Australian Airforce story, shining the spotlight on the hero women who dedicated their lives to protecting our country.

A great way to explore more of The Murray's towns and appreciate the culture and artistry is to follow the public art, sculpture and mural trails like the Albury Wodonga Public Art Trail and Murals of Mildura.

Alternatively, hit the road and follow the Murray Silo Art & Murals Trail featuring the larger-than-life artwork and insta-worthy locations.