Betty Collier

30 October - 31 December 2013

Richmond Library Space, 415 Church St, Richmond

Adventures on an African Safari and the Galapagos Islands

Print & ink drawings on cotton rag, pen & ink drawings, and photography

Report by Carmel O'Connor

Betty Collier - Eyes On Safari

Adventures on an African Safari and the Galapagos Islands, is the title of Betty's Solo Exhibition as a member of the Contemporary Arts Society of Victoria Inc., at Richmond Library until 31 December 2013.

Betty Collier b. 1942 has a wealth of knowledge for the visual arts. In 2011 this artist exhibited sculpture at the Florence Biennale, Italy; that is no mean feat! Her group exhibitions date back to the 1980's with solo shows from 1996. Whilst sculpture is her major discipline, her practice in Drawing and Photography are the mediums that display her memories of a fantastic Safari adventure. Betty brings us a very special, unique vision from afar. How many of us will get to the Galapagos Isles to see these creatures?


Galapagos Giant Saddleback Tortoise, print & ink drawing, 1/10, 30 x 42 cm, by Betty Collier

Collier is aware that these special animals are endangered and she presents us with an almost zoological assessment of what these animals look like. Collier displays her images to educate us in what is new and surreal. This artist brings to us what we may never see for ourselves. As European artists travelled to Australia over two hundred years ago, taking back to their native country illustrations of kangaroos, for example.

As you enter the library from Charlotte Street, you will see on your right hand side, Collier's illustrations and photographs displayed in a large glass cabinet.


Betty Collier's works in The Budgeins Case, Richmond Library foyer (detail)

Blue Footed Boobie Bird, print & ink drawing, 1/10, 42 x 30 cm, by Betty Collier


Prints enhanced with felt tip pen lines on cotton rag paper, photographs in A3 and A4, photographs in folders which reveal the open page to show an image plus written research of her findings. A3 Prints enhanced with felt tip pen on white paper. Blue Footed Boobie Bird (print and ink drawing) was an immediate favourite drawing for me. Sure the title is cute but the rendering of this and all the images is what impressed me most. Collier has the ability to take your mind for a walk around her pictures.

Magnificent Frigate Birds (print and ink drawing) was the only other print/drawing that contrasted the black and white image with one colour to highlight a section of the bird. All items are for sale at reasonable prices.


Magnificent Frigate Birds, print & ink drawing, 1/10, 30 x 42 cm, by Betty Collier

Betty's blockbuster display of six framed art works is on the wall at the information desk. All these images are of the African Safari - Wow. My favourite image, titled Frogs out on a Limb, has a strong impact for me due to the drawing of the limbs and foliage which nestle around the two frogs, creating positive and negative shapes before the motif meets the deep cut mount board which crops the image.


Frogs out on a Limb, print & ink drawing on cotton rag, 1/10, 65 x 60 cm, by Betty Collier

The six print & ink on cotton rag images are all framed. They are labour intensive works, which display this artist's skill and technical knowledge. A show worth seeing, presented by an experienced artist.


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