Artists collaborate for new exhibition at Leura's Everglades Gallery

"Eight Hundred Metres (and Up)" is a collaboration of three artists from the Blue Mountains and the Southern Highlands, showing at Everglades Gallery in Leura from January 9-30.

LEANNE BOOTH: Blue Mist, acrylic on canvas, 2021

LEANNE BOOTH: Blue Mist, acrylic on canvas, 2021

Over more than two years Blue Mountains photographer Tracy Ponich and Highlands painter Leanne Booth shared their own regions. They took each other to beautiful vistas, misty rainforest floors, and little-known and rarely visited places. Camera gear, sketchbooks, and thermoses of tea in tow, they started a series of mini-projects.

Later they invited Southern Highlands friend and metal artist Mark Kelly to join them on their excursions. He added a three-dimensional element - the perfect complement.

While disparate in style and media, the works of the three artists neatly shape the exhibition's narrative. Leanne Booth's paintings are mainly large and bold in brush work, yet her focus often zooms in to the details she sees around her. Her pieces are grand vignettes with a sense of immediacy and a change in the air.

By contrast, Tracy Ponich's photographs of the land invoke a timelessness: broad sweeps versus the macro shot, or pathways that suggest an expansiveness just beyond the photograph.

TRACY PONICH: Prince Henry Meets Lady Carrington, limited edition photographic print, 2021

TRACY PONICH: Prince Henry Meets Lady Carrington, limited edition photographic print, 2021

For Everglades Mark Kelly has created one-of-a-kind, hand-cut forms in different types of metal. Variations in material and technique give texture to his works which are informed by the environment he observed during the excursions.

The Everglades exhibition is the end result of the trio's collaboration: photographs and paintings, ink drawings, and metal sculptures. There are also notes, post card-sized photos, and illustrated journals that detail the shared days into the higher lands of NSW.

One grouping of small works called the Biotope Series is a unique contribution to this exhibition: the pieces combine the hands of two of the artists. Booth's intricate pen and ink illustrations of undergrowth, leaves, and birds are drawn on top of Ponich's gentle scenes of gum trees shrouded in mist.

Everglades Gallery is located at 37 Everglades Avenue, Leura. Phone 4784 1938.

MARK KELLY: Gum Leaf (detail), HW350 steel, 2021

MARK KELLY: Gum Leaf (detail), HW350 steel, 2021