World class artworks from valley home

 

Hugh and Mary McLachlan

World class artworks from valley home

MAY 2015 | JOANNE EISEMANN

 

 Mike Moores

HIDDEN ALONG a country lane by the banks of the Meander River, you can find an exclusive studio/gallery/ sculpture garden called McLachlan Studios.

Mary and Hugh both trained as Gold and Silversmiths at RMIT in Melbourne and made Tasmania their home in 1980.

“Us moving to Tasmania was a bit of a fluke really. I inherited this 50 acres which was terribly rundown; there was no garden, the paddocks were over grown with gorse and blackberries, the house was falling down”, shared Mary.

Their family thought they were slightly mad, but Hugh had a vision and always thought he could do something with it.

These days, there is no hint of a dilapidated past. The house is renovated and not a blackberry to be seen on the lush river flat pasture.

The English style garden is home to a jewellery studio and a selection of Hugh’s sculptures.

“People really enjoy the experience of coming here, because its an art experience”, says Mary. She adds, “Hugh just loves making, he loves making jewellery, he loves making sculpture, he loves painting, he gets up to make.”

Mary’s interests have moved over the years, from the making to the marketing of their product. She enjoys assisting people to find the piece that is special for them.

At first they sold jewellery through galleries around Australia and overseas, but as Mary observes, “then people started getting to know us here, it got to the stage where we couldn’t support other galleries as we were selling so much here.”

All jewellery sales have been through their studio since 2000.

The jewellery is simple and elegant with a Scandinavian feel. They particularly like using a combination of gold and silver in their work, feeling that the combination works well together.

Pearls and other precious stones are sourced from trade fairs in Hong Kong.

Hugh enjoys the process of taking something from the ground and transforming it into something eternal, saying, “it’s something that lasts forever.”

Represented by Traffic Jam Galleries in Sydney, Hugh is gaining recognition as a sculptor and painter; several pieces have been chosen for Sculpture by the Sea exhibitions in Bondi and Cottlesloe (WA).

This year he has been selected as a finalist in the Montalto Sculpture Prize 2015.

When asked what the future holds, Mary responds, “It feels like it’s all just starting, the world is our oyster, we don’t need to know what the future holds, it will be exciting but we don’t know what it will be…I don’t think an artist ever stops – you just do it till you can’t do it anymore.”

More information on their treasures may be found at www.mclachlanstudio.com.au or by visiting their Facebook page “McLachlan Studio”