Acclaimed artist to exhibit in Queenscliff

Theo and Soula Mantalvanos at their gallery in Queenscliff. The Good Life, a painting by Michael Leunig in the background. (Ivan Kemp) 331713_01

By Jena Carr

A new exhibition by legendary Australian cartoonist Michael Leunig has come to Queenscliff this May.

Mr Leunig said he was glad to bring his art pieces to the Queenscliff Gallery and present his Don’t Give Up exhibition to the public from May 11 to May 28.

“In these inhibited times, newspaper cartooning is not as free, experimental or adventurous as it used to be,” he said.

“Painting remains as creative and liberating as ever and is a great relief to the healthy artistic spirit.

“I rarely get to the seaside these days, but showing my work in Queenscliff fits well to memories of happy childhood holidays across the water at Rosebud, where my early creativity found much joy.”

Queenscliff Gallery co-owner Theo Mantalvanos said he was excited to work with Mr Leunig on the exhibition.

“It’s a solo exhibition of 13 paintings that he’s created specifically for this show and will also incorporate some of his engravings that haven’t been seen for many years,” he said.

“His work is emotional, clever, joyous, and it makes the average visitor or the people that come to see his work really think about things.

“When you look at it a bit more deeply, it can conjure up certain emotions and makes it quite a moving image.”

Mr Mantalvanos said he loved seeing the joy and excitement on visitors’ faces after coming to the gallery and seeing Michael’s work.

“We feel that not only do we benefit as a gallery with Michael’s work here, but we feel that we’re adding something to the town with the visitation,” he said.

“I think the exciting thing is that these are all new works and Michael is quite careful in the way he doesn’t let things leak too early.”