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‘The Renewal of Mr Jones’ exhibition to launch at former David Jones

10 March 2015 | Posted in: News

Rachel Milne View of the Cathedral, 2015, oil on board.

Rachel Milne has undertaken a six-week artist residency within the former Scott’s and, later, David Jones department store, which will culminate in a short-run exhibition in the same building in March.

Renew Newcastle worked with building’s property owners, GPT Group and UrbanGrowth NSW, to allow Milne complete access to all floors of the historic building to develop a collection of oil paintings that depict almost every corner of the once thriving department store.

Milne explains the intrigue of the building, ‘185 Hunter Street seems to mean so much to many Novocastrians. People have told me about their first date in the restaurant, having their hair cut as a child in the salon. To be able to go back in to what was such a bustling space and record what’s left has been a really amazing experience.’

‘The huge floors are beautiful in their own way now they are empty, the ceilings are a tangle of pipes and lights and the pillars throw shadows onto the carpets and walkways. It’s definitely a calm rather than creepy atmosphere and I feel very lucky to be able to record the building as it is now and I hope I can communicate some of the feel of the space through the final exhibition of work.’

Rachel Milne was born in England and moved to Newcastle in 2013. Previously Rachel has worked as a set painter to support her artistic practice. In 2013 Rachel was the winner of the Singleton Portrait Prize and in 2014 was selected as a finalist for Newcastle Art Gallery’s annual Kilgour Prize. Rachel’s works in oil on board, from life, concentrating on interiors and portraiture, with a focus on capturing light. Rachel presented at Renew Newcastle’s Creative Talks in 2014.

The Renewal of Mr Jones The Project Space at The Emporium 185 Hunter Street, Newcastle Wed 18 March – Sat 21 March, 10am to 5pm Opening Event: 6pm, Wed 18 March

A short film by VFA

Good News, Quick Links (March)

10 March 2015 | Posted in: News

photo Beep Bicycle Bells has been catapulted into the retail sphere with their recent attendance at boutique retail trade show Life InStyle in February. As Renewer Jana Lindstrom of Beep explains, ‘Our product has now been picked up by many design driven companies with similar brand values as Beep! It was an amazing experience and will be participating in Life Instyle Melbourne in August 2015.

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_10.57.10_pm The Roost Creative has recently featured in The Newcastle Herald as the oldest of three creative hubs for freelancers, artist and entrepreneurs in Newcastle’s CBD. Pic by Dean Osland.

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_11.02.16_pm Newcastle Now is proudly launching the East End on Foot 1st Edition Walking Tour Map by current Renewer Liz Anelli, RN graduate Pocket Design, Kent Woodcock, Kimberly O’Sullivan and the people of Newcastle East. Follow the history, arts and architecture trails around our fine city for a few hours’ healthy exercise. Liz’s artwork for the map is also available to view on the new Council Tourism interactive website

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_11.13.29_pm Dylan Smyth and his team of local photographers have passed the halfway part of the 2hrsnorth project, documenting all the suburbs of Newcastle in zine format. As Dylan explains, ‘So far we have printed and distributed 8 different books. We have a further 4 remaining before the project wraps up in April.’

Wolfe Street Studios Open Tour – Thu 12 March

10 March 2015 | Posted in: News


March Exhibitions

3 March 2015 | Posted in: News

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_10.31.24_pm ‘Tears of the Moon’ at NANA
A solo exhibition of handpainted silks, works on canvas and handmade paper bowls by Barbara Byng, reflecting a deep connection to personal and collective myth, ritual and story.
When: 4-21 March
Opening Event: Saturday, 7 March, 2pm-4pm Where: NANA at The Emporium , 185 Hunter Street
Hours: Wed 10-4, Thu 10-5, Fri 10-5, Sat 10-4.

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_10.22.11_pm ‘DON’T PANIC’ at Curve Gallery
Precisely one year after the launch of 2014’s STORM CLOUDS, Ben Mitchell (of The Roost Creative) is kicking off his graphic novel sequel DON’T PANIC. The 60-page risograph printed comic book features as an installation on the walls of the gallery.
When: 13-14 March
Opening Event: Friday, 13 March, 6pm-8pm Where: Curve Gallery, 61 Hunter Street
Hours: Wed to Fri 1-7, Sat 11-3.

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_9.35.09_pm ‘The Renewal of Mr Jones’ at The Project Space
A collection of oil paintings by Rachel Milne developed ‘behind the scenes’ at the iconic David Jones building at 185 Hunter Street after a 6-week long residency with access to every empty floor.
When: 18 -21 March
Opening Event: 6-8pm, Wednesday 18 March
Where: The Project Space at The Emporium , 185 Hunter Street Mall, Newcastle
Hours: Wed 10-4, Thu 10-5, Fri 10-5, Sat 10-4.

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_10.22.26_pm ‘Coastal Watch’ at Curve Gallery
Coastal Watch is an exhibition by established Sydney artists Peter Griffen & Denise Lithgow featuring vibrant abstract responses to coastal landscapes through painting & felt sculpture.
When: 21 March-5 April
Opening Event: Friday, 20 March, 6pm-8pm Where: Curve Gallery, 61 Hunter Street
Hours: Wed to Fri 1-7, Sat 11-3.

Screen_Shot_2015-02-17_at_10.29.22_pm ‘You Me Us: a united world after Paris’ at NANA
A window installation by Ro Murray. Using chalk pens Murray spells a message of unity in the language of the maritime signal flags in the NANA gallery Perkins St windows.
Where: NANA at The Emporium , 185 Hunter Street
Hours: 24 hours

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_10.40.13_pm ‘New Home: with the oldest story’ at Wakarla Studio + Ann Snell Gallery
Representing internationally recognised Indigenous artists and emerging Indigenous artists, Ann Snell and Jason Couthard of Wakarla Studio are proud to present fine art from the oldest continuing culture in world.
When: throughout March
Where: Wakarla Studio + Ann Snell Gallery, 451 Hunter St Newcastle (btw Auckland & Union Sts)
Hours: Tue-Sat 11am-4pm

March Events & Workshops

3 March 2015 | Posted in: News


Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_9.00.25_pm Hamilton Child Care Centre Family Fun Day with Liz Anelli Illustration.
Relax on rugs & cushions and join Liz Anelli in one of four local children’s book author/illustrator’s story time sessions, sharing her new cricket picture book, Howzat!
When: Saturday 14th March. 9am-3pm – Liz’s session is at 11am
Where: Gregson Park, Hamilton
Cost: Free event
More info: via

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_9.02.13_pm Newcastle Youth Orchestra’s ‘Kids Classics: Introduction to the Orchestra’ at Newcastle Museum.
Join Newcastle Youth Orchestra as we take you on a journey, learning about all instruments of the orchestra! Our musical maestro will lead talented students of the orchestra in performing works by Prokofiev, Tchaikovsky, Copland and more. Hear our bold brass players, our wonderful woodwind section, powerful percussionists and the sublime strings. Accompanied by our special guests, the puppet people, it’s a concert for the whole family to enjoy!
When: Saturday 28 March, from 2pm
Where: Newcastle Museum, Workshop Way, Newcastle
Cost: from $20.39. Tickets available via

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_6.30.19_pm Dylan Smyth & The Follower at Idea Bombing Newcastle.
For the opening of the Newcastle Writer’s Festival 2015 Idea Bombing will be hosting its next session looking at independent print media in Newcastle. In the era of digital media, how relevant are print publications? We are asking our audience to engage in the ‘idea bombing’ format with some of Newcastle’s prominent independent print media providers in an intimate environment. Featuring Newcastle Mirage, The Follower newspaper, White Magazine and 2hrs North.
When: 5pm – 6:30pm, Friday 20 March
Where: The Press Book House Cafe, 462 Hunter St, Newcastle (Civic)
Cost: Free, but registration is essential


Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_9.20.47_pm DIY Media + The Roost Creative present Hunter Lunch & Learn.
A free monthly series of business development seminars for individuals and entrepreneurs. This month Karissa Lewis presents ‘Client experience is the only currency in today’s economy’. Sign up to the Hunter Lunch & Learn enewsletter to be notified of upcoming seminars.
When: 12.30pm – 1.30pm, Friday 20 March
Where: The Roost Creative, Level 1, 152-160 Hunter Street, Newcastle (enter via Market St)
Cost: Free, but registration is essential.

Screen_Shot_2015-03-10_at_9.26.23_pm 2015 Newcastle Writers Festival Kids Program Family Fun Day with Liz Anellli Illustration.
Liz will feature as the 11am local children’s book author/illustrator’s story time session – sharing her new cricket picture book, Howzat! Kids and families can enjoy readings by local authors and illustrators, book launches, the Aunt Peachy Show, face painting & craft zone and buy signed copies of the books at MacLeans Booksellers pop-up on-site shop. Please note, Liz’s NWF Discovering Printmaking Workshop [PDF] now sold out.
When: 11am, Saturday 21 March (Family Fun Day runs from 9:30am to 1:30pm)
Where: Newcastle Region Library, Laman Street, Newcastle
Cost: Free event
More info: via and


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