Discovered in a Tidy Up

In the past six weeks I have been revamping two rooms in my house.

My study in particular had become over abundant with ‘stuff’. This stuff consisted mainly of Art Magazines, some 20 years old, books; more than 25 years old and several diaries of which I found the earliest to be from 1987. Interesting tomes now passed onto my daughter who found my records of appointments, money spent on horses, music lessons, sports equipment, hair cuts quite an insight into ‘times past’.

I have thrown out or given away a mass of magazines under the assumption that if I have not read them in the past ten years then I most probably will not read them in the next ten years.

Books are quite different, if I have not read it in the last 15 years then I just may read it in the next 15 years.

The new bookshelves were installed this past week and the Thursday weather report of Extreme and Total Fire Ban, including high winds encouraged an indoor day and the perfect day to set up my books on the new shelves.

What joy!! During this process I rediscovered several books and one in particular published in 1994 by Artists Ink Australia from Moe in Victoria. The book 50 Australian Artists Vol. 1 was researched by John Mutsaers and Edited by Helen Classon.

The basis of the book was to promote artists and at the same time support The Fred Hollows Foundation.

Gabi Hollows (1994) States: The artists in this book have used their sight and talents to give sight to others, and for this I warmly thank them.

A list of the featured artists is printed on the jacket, in alphabetical order and as I skimmed the names, I found four women artists members of MSWPS.

Annee Kelly

Barbara McManus

Carole Milton

Connie Walker

Each artist has a double page spread in the book that includes a black and white portrait photo and one-page biography. The opposite page features an artwork by the artist with title, size, medium and in some cases current owner.

Connie Walker was a member of MSWPS from 1985 until her passing in 2017.

In 1994 Connie Walker had many accolades to her profession after having received her first award in 1971.

Barbara McManus, who also lists her MSWPS membership has been a continual member since 1981. Among her accolades Barbara McManus was the 1986 recipient of the coveted A M E Bale overseas scholarship. Alice Marion Ellen Bale, a professional artist, was a Member of the Melbourne Society for Women Painters and Sculptors from 1917 until her death in 1955.

One is never quite sure what will be found in a tidy up and I was pleased to rediscover this book to read of the support and community spirit of these four MSWPS ladies.

Denise Keele-bedford