Port Stephens Community Arts Centre Celebrates Sun, Surf and Sand in Art Exhibition

Feature artist Stafford Bennett.
Feature artist Stafford Bennett.


THE Bay’s coastline and the environment we all enjoy living in at Port Stephens is the focus of the Sun, Surf and Sand exhibition being held at the Port Stephens Community Arts Centre until 20 February.

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Gallery Director, Nada O’Loughlin-Yonge told News of the Area, “The next feature artist will be Watercolour Painter Stafford Bennett whose paintings will be on display until 20 February.”

Stafford Bennett is a versatile artist who paints a variety of Australian landscapes, historical buildings, water scenes, fauna and flora and still life.

Stafford told News of the Area, “Taking up painting has changed the way I look at the world.

“I now see different tones, shapes and colours every day,” he said.

The artist that inspires Stafford most is our own Newcastle artist William T Cooper.

Following his retirement in 2000 Stafford took up watercolour painting with the Nepean Art Society under the tutelage of Peter Gonzalez and Joe Cartwright.

Stafford moved with his wife Valerie from the Blue Mountains to Corlette in 2016.

Stafford worked for the NSW Public Works Department on major high rise construction and was a founding member and president of the Institute of Plant Engineers of Australasia.

He was asked to join the Legislature of the NSW Parliament to oversee the construction of the new members annex and the restoration of the Rum hospital, which currently serves as the NSW Parliament House.

At one time he was also responsible for the preservation and conservation of the Parliament’s historic art collection, which was responsible for starting his interest in art.

You can visit the Port Stephens Community Arts Centre and see Stafford’s and other local artists works between 10am and 4pm daily at Cultural Close, off Shoal Bay Road in Nelson Bay.



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