Celebrate our second birthday

News Uncategorized Workshops

Braided Rag Rug workshop with Ilka White

A great way to recycle old clothes and fabric!

In our second workshop with visual artists Ilka White, we will learn to make fantastic rag rugs using an off-loom, spiral-woven braiding technique, in this one day workshop. We share an inspiring range of colour and design possibilities in these workshops, as well as covering cloth and fibre types.


Date: Saturday 2nd Sept, 10am-4pm
Cost: $120 per person
Places are limited to 12 people and bookings are open now – please share with friends who you think might be interested

Beautiful and unique floor coverings are possible using contrasting colours, or you can blend patterned rags for a ‘carpet of flowers’. This braiding technique weaves in as we go so there is no stitching up required afterward.

Bring your own material to recycle and find out what riches can come from rags…

Most people’s work by the end of the class is about the size of a dinner plate. The completed size is up to you, and could range from a small mat to a room-sized rug. This workshop gives you all the skills you need to finish off the rug at home.

Other workshops Ilka will be holding at the Arts Hub:
Natural dyeing and tablet weaving
Date: August 12th & 13th from 9.30am – 4.30pm

String vessel construction workshop
Date: Sunday 22nd Oct, 9.30am-4.40pm

For more information:
Sarah Koschak 0419 322 681
Julie Patey 0408 528 536

Exhibitions News

Newstead’s studios open their doors

During the Castlemaine State Festival eight studios will open their doors providing access to a diverse selection of passionately created artworks from 11 artists.

Open during the weekends of 18th & 19th and 25th & 26th March 2017 from 10-4pm with some studios open throughout the week. Please check the website for more details.

Download the map here: Newstead Open Studios map final

Brochures are available from various outlets in Newstead, Castlemaine and Maldon… or you can download the guide directly on your phone or tablet: Newstead Open Studios map final The artists are looking forward to sharing stories of their artistic journeys. They want to inspire visitors with their endeavours and hope guests appreciate the uniqueness of their artwork and support their efforts with a purchase that has an intriguing story attached.
Below is a small glimpse of what is waiting for you at the Newstead Open Studios

Chris Johnston’s medium is clay; sculptural and functional, which reflects her connection to place and the land.


Roger McKindley’s Antares Iron Art Garden is where broken and discarded objects morph together to live once again.

Brass and copper are manipulated by Trefor Prest to create intricate, organic and mechanical oddities – with a touch of Steampunk.

Sarah Koschak creates functional wheel thrown porcelain pottery for everyday use. Her pieces are simply elegant.

Sally Roadnight explores the landscape through the artistry of various found objects and media including drawing, sewing, printing, sculpture and basketry.

reiteration - artists sally roadknight, julie patey, georgina duckett, sandra tobias at newstead artshub exhibition opening
Printmaker Richard Sullivan is influenced by his environment which is reflected in the artist books, collage and altered books he creates.
FullSizeRender copy

Prue McAdam’s special love of abstraction and gestural marks is explored in her paintings. Prue paints using a variety of media.

FullSizeRender 3

Striving for the highest quality of woodwork of which his hands and mind are capable, Lachlan Park makes ‘things’ from wood.


Krissy Scherlies is currently allowing her imagination to take control as she paints colourful, contemporary canvases using paint and sand.


Julie Patey utilises printmaking and mixed media to explore the process of art making through the use of colour, shape and texture to echo her connection to the landscape of central Victoria.


Stunning nature photographs of the bush reserve surrounding the Old Walmer School are captured by photographer Bronwyn Silver.


Thanks to Kristin Scherlies.

Exhibitions News

Synergy – Creative photography exhibition

Through December 2016 and into the new year, we have an exhibition featuring the creative work of four central Victorian photographers: Rob Watson, Natalie Coombes, Nathan Segaloff and Aden Brown. Each have been exploring diverse photographic techniques and concepts, resulting in unique and impressive images.

The exhibition – entitled ‘Synergy‘ – will be opened by the Arts Hub’s own Julie Patey at 2pm on Saturday 10th December, and you are warmly invited.

The exhibition will be open 10am-5pm, Friday-Sunday from 10th December – 7th January, excluding the Sundays of Xmas Day and New Years Day.

Synergy photographic exhibition, Dec 2016-Jan 2017

Rob Watson
Rob Watson
Nathan Segaloff
Nathan Segaloff
Natalie Coombes
Natalie Coombes
Aden Brown
Aden Brown
Exhibitions News

MAG-nificent: Journeying with Maldon Art Group

Maldon Art Group – MAG – is an eclectic group of artists with wildly differing art experiences and practice. They meet weekly, without fail, throughout the year only having the Christmas week off.

Their gatherings are full of chat, laughter and food, with advice and feedback given when requested. A warm, supportive group.

This inaugural exhibition showcases their diverse styles and embraces their joy at being part of such a unique group.

The exhibition will run from 11th of November until the 4th of December, open 10am – 4pm Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays

Opening night is at 6pm on the 11th of November – all welcome.

MAG embraces a range of media including, oils, house paint, fabric, watercolour, acrylic, pencil and charcoal, reflecting their journey together. There is fantasy, realism and quirkiness in equal measure.

MAG hope that this will be an exhibition where people will come along and become lost in the work they offer and then return for another look, bringing a friend with them.



Exhibitions News

Upcoming exhibition: Studio Paradiso printmakers


Part of Arts Open 2016 Open Studios
Newstead Railway Arts Hub, Dundas Street, Newstead

Exhibition Opening: 19 March 2016 by Melissa Proposch at 2.00 pm
All Welcome

Open: March 12, 13, 14,
March 19, 20 and
March 26, 27, 2016

10.00 am to 4.00 pm each day

About seven kilometres from Newstead on the Newstead Creswick Rd., tucked in the valley, are a Catholic church, some houses, and a red brick (ex) Primitive Methodist church with blue doors guarded by Italian pencil pines. A building where local communities met for decades to dance, talk about local matters, celebrate births, deaths and marriages, and play tennis on the courts behind the building. A place like many others in rural areas of Australia.

For the past fourteen years it’s been Diana Orinda Burns’ printmaking studio, Studio Paradiso. During these years Diana has run printmaking classes and courses, and consultancies for printmakers from all over Australia. The participants in these activities range from beginners to professionals preparing for exhibitions.
Diana has printed works for John Olsen, Tommy Watson, Mrs Bennett, Adam Cullen, David Larwill, Julian Meagher, Jasper Knight, Rhys Lee, Sam Leach, and James Drinkwater, among others.

Thus the building that’s home to Studio Paradiso stays true to its original purposes: a place where a community of artists and printmakers meet and practise.

Artists from Diana’s classes have exhibited as groups or individuals during the Castlemaine Festival over these years, independently in commercial galleries, and in the Arts Open Visual Arts Festival held in years alternate to the Castlemaine Festival: this year in the community Railway Arts Hub in Newstead.

If you’re driving through the Sandon valley to or from Newstead look out for Studio Paradiso. Like many similar buildings in rural areas of Australia it’s associated with many local stories and activities. You might also imagine the artists at work in Studio Paradiso: their conversations and collaborations, including their accounts of problems shared and solved, and their responses to Diana’s guidance and suggestions about directions and possibilities in their work. And, of course, the cakes, cups of tea, eclectic music and roaring winter fires that fuel the artists. One problem yet to be solved is how to get Diana away from her teaching and supervising the presses so that she can enjoy and finish her cup of tea.

– Richard Sullivan

Exhibitions News

Reiteration – Seeing Things Anew

Reiteration Exhibition, February 2016

An exciting group exhibition of four regional artists in the newly renovated Newstead Railway Station in central Victoria.

‘Seeing things anew – from an odd angle, in an unexpected light, coloured differently, somehow suits my nature better……’

Robert Dessaix ‘And so forth’

This exhibition explores the process of artmaking through the use of pattern, colour, shape and form.  It echoes an important connection to the unique community and landscape of central Victoria.

Artists include Georgina Duckett Julie Patey, Sally Roadknight and Sandra Tobias, living and based in the central Victoria.

These professional artists have all had successful careers in the arts; exhibiting internationally and nationally, teaching, project managing and coordinating community art spaces for community arts and festivals.

The diverse range of work includes mixed media, textiles, prints, bound books, collages and paintings, all with a connection to community and environment.

The Newstead Railway Station, originally built in 1880s, has been recently refurbished by VicTrack and was made available to the community in 2015. Since then the gallery has held exhibitions and workshops and is now known as the Newstead Railway Arts Hub.

It is exciting to see the first exhibition for 2016 kick start with this unique exhibition showcasing mid-career regional artists. The Arts Hub provides a shared space for artists to exhibit their work, and involve the local community in workshops and artists talks.

The exhibition is open from Sat 6th February- 27th February
Open: Fri, Sat, Sun, 11am – 4pm
Address: Dundas St Newstead (directly across from Railway Hotel)
Enquiries: Julie Patey
M:  0408528536


Small Town Transformations Grant meeting … read on

Small Town Transformations Grant meeting
Arts Hub 26 November 2015.

The meeting was called to develop initial ideas for a Small Town Transformations grant. These grants are for Victorian towns with fewer than 2000 people and are designed to support artistic projects that are:

  • connected to community and place
  • that are collaborative and
  • that will create a legacy
  • enjoyable over time

The maximum grant is $350,000 over 3 years and it is highly competitive. Our expression of interest is due in at the end of February, and if shortlisted, a detailed proposal is due in April. A significant part of the grant is to pay artists.

We discussed what sort of project would be good for the Newstead community. Here are the criteria we discussed:
1. Equally benefiting artists and community – artists are community members too
2. Be unique, not simply replicating what other communities in the region are doing
3. Leave something tangible after the three years, that is an ongoing physical reminder of our efforts as a community
4. Interpret the arts emphasis broadly – many forms of art: performance, story telling, culture and painting, potting and playfulness
5. Inspirational and beautiful and lead into further community activities after the three years
6. Be implemented in clearly defined 3 or 4 stages

Who came?
There were 14 people there: (with 6 apologies)
Prue MacAdam , Julie Patey, Chris Johnston, Jan Denton, Graham Denton, Sarah Koschak, Andrew Skeoch, Phillip McDonald, David Farrington, Don Culvenor, Geoff Park, Mary Caspar, Roger McKindlay, Ann Berg.

What ideas were proposed?
The following ideas came from previous meetings of people from the Newstead Arts community:

Arts Studio – Workshop
The development of an Arts Studio Workshop where skills between artists could be shared, artistic skills further developed and the community have equal access. It’s a place where arts gets made, resources and equipment are shared, teaching and learning happens. Use the Good’s Shed for this purpose – and tap into VicTrack money again?

Arts Town?
Clunes is a BookTown – can Newstead be an ArtsTown? What would it mean to be an arts town?

Art around town
More art – public art:
• Maze
• Arts trail – along the river? an arts river bridge?
• projections
• painting on buildings

• create an outdoor performance space and/or:
• a fully functional theatre space and screen production
• digital editing – music, film etc
• film-making
• showcasing local performance – musicians, theatre etc

Sculpture Park opposite the Arts Hub
Would this work with the RSL park and its purposes?

River Art
Mend the flood levee bank and turn it into a feature of sculptures, mosaics, maybe including an Art Walk, incorporating the River and the landscape around and within Newstead. Connects to river restoration plantings and other river projects

Rotunda Park
A rotunda with a beautifully winding wheelchair access ramp? Or a very modern SoundShell Theatre space. Does it fit with history/Historical Society? Theatre in the Newstead Community Centre is under-utilised. Perhaps theatre events focused here to increase its viability?

Newstead Live & other Festivals
Incorporating Art Events/festival into the Newstead Live Festival. Expand the Short Story Tattoo into a Festival of Ideas and Art Practice Inspiration (link into Words in Winter, Chopped etc)

A street trees project?
Mount Alexander Shire are in the process of developing a street trees strategy for MAS towns … could we create an idea around this?

A number of extra ideas were added, then we worked in small groups to identify extra ideas and then group them together.

Arts Hub ideas
• To develop the railway building footprint to enhance the landscape with dry land australian garden, add signage to the entrance and the transform the “goods shed” as a theatrical place both outside and inside the building.
• To have sculptures which would be in/ around the garden but also have interactive parts for children to “play” with, using sound and movement.
• To have a “Projection Art ” festival depicting history and culture of Newstead in the form of projections of digital photos on the goods shed wall.(The Screen)
• To have a carriage or couple of carriages parked on the rail to create visual interest, and practically make the platform safe and link station to goods shed.
• Create a vertical garden on the brick wall to make attractive.
• Connect the Railway Station with an “art trail” from the Railway garden across to the river with a path with sculptural presence.

River ideas
• River Art (as above)
• Pathway/arts trails from Newstead village to Arts Hub and Park – masks, colour, footprints, painters
• Telling the story of the river – past, present, Dja Dja Wurrung, historical society, arts trail
• Health of the river – trees, stories, powerful owl nesting, other creatures, punt
• Interpretive signage
• River bridge – suspension bridge, sculptural – a folly
• Ephemeral art and sculptures

Earth Ship/Studio/Arts School ideas
• Arts Studio/workspace (as above)
• Workspace – involve children, open access
• Arts school…
• Earth Ship ….

History-related ideas
• Incorporate / publish historical archives
• Historical walk around time – the buildings as the focus – with creative interpretation- light boxes illuminating past streets apes
• Historical transition – demonstrate past and ongoing traditions/transformations through specific place such as the courthouse – develop the grounds, dramatised performance in courthouse, schools theatre in education
• Oral history stories e.g. Janet Barker’s farmers project – create intervene rational experiences through oral history recording

Performance ideas
• Sound performance space at Footy oval
• Create and nurture theatre/performance activities
• Event in the park opposite Arts Hub – ‘spiegeltent’
Other ideas
• Arts Map
• Sculpture Park
• Sensory Gardens
• Outdoor art – pavement art, murals, mosaic seats
• Non-artists working with artists to create their vision- perhaps an art competition where an artist is commissioned to bring a non-artists vision to life.

Some ideas were about process or bigger concepts
• Our town as ‘arts town’
• Including as products – a thing, an event, a collaboration
• Inviting visiting artists to hold workshops or talks in town
• Process not product – arts and science working together to tackle big problems

Getting down to details?
Everyone was invited to choose the idea or ideas they felt most inspired by and work with any others who were interested in the same idea/s. Three ideas were focused on:

  1. Arts Hub
  2. River
  3. Earthship/Arts school, including the idea of shared studio space/s

Each group documented the idea, identified strength and weaknesses, who would benefit and what the long-term legacy would be for the Newstead community. The ideas developed were presented back to the whole group. Through discussion, we recognised that there were links between these three ideas and with some of the other ideas that hadn’t been picked up.

Next steps
Each of the three groups, (Arts Hub, River and Earthship/Arts School/workshops), will meet in the next two weeks, develop the ideas further and bring them back to the next meeting on Wednesday 9 December, 7pm at the Arts Hub.

For further information: Andrew Skeoch e: or m: 0419 091 979



Newstead 2021 AGM – invitation and reminder

A quick reminder that the Newstead 2021 AGM will be held today – 5pm at the Newstead Community Garden.

As always it will be a relaxed an informal gathering – current members and newcomers are most welcome. There will be drinks and nibbles and you’ll get a chance to hear from three younger Newsteadians about their reflections, adventures and aspirations since growing up in our community.

Newstead 2021 plays a supporting role in projects with broad community benefit, such as the Community Garden, Railway Arts Hub and Renewable Newstead – its a great chance to get an update on these and other projects.


Small Town Transformations – Are we keen?

Managed by Regional Arts Victoria on behalf of the Victorian Government, the Small Town Transformations program invites small towns across the state to embark on an ambitious creative project that will bring the community together with professional artists and create a lasting legacy. The program offers $350,000 for the six strongest creative proposals that will deliver cultural, social and economic benefits to their town. Projects can use a wide range of creative forms, from design to performance, game development, film-making and visual arts. The program is now open to towns with a population of 2,000 people or less, so more than 310 towns will be eligible.

Back in 2012 we submitted a proposal, Newstead Express, to the first round of the Small Towns Transformations Program. We were unsuccessful on that occasion … but received very positive feedback.

Are we keen to have another go at this wonderful opportunity? Do you have an idea to throw into the mix? Would you be interested in contributing some time, energy and inspiration into helping develop an application?

If Yes, please come along to a meeting at the Newstead Railway Arts Hub, Thursday 26th November at 7pm.

Expressions of interest from towns will open on Monday, 9 November, 2015 and close on Friday 5 February 2016. Regional Arts Victoria will host information sessions and workshops across the state for communities interested in taking part.

Transformative ideas are collaborative. They bring people together to make things, to learn new ways of doing things. To work with our hands, our minds and our hearts. To uncover memories and tell stories. To discover new strengths by funding new ways to express ourselves. In doing so, we create the spaces where new ideas can emerge. Coming together to imagine the artistic transformation of your entire town takes this intimate collaboration to a whole new place.

Further information: Andrew Skeoch 5476-2609 or Geoff Park 0418 138 632

Click here to learn more about the program.