By Ahn Wells
If you frequent Newcastle's Merewether Beach, you may have already seen an artist set-up with his large painting canvas and oversized paint palette near the rocks in front of the Merewether Cafe or to the side of the Ocean Baths. That artist is Dino Consalvo and he has been painting in this area during all hours of the day and night since April in preparation for his solo exhibition at Gallery 139 Hamilton. Relying on nature's patterns, the low and high tides, the colours reflected through the clouds and the salt air. His paintings are not only of this well-known place they are also a collection of how the artist feel towards this familiar location.
Consalvo has always been fascinated with the area of Merewether, particularly the beach and ocean bath areas. The changing colours of the ocean, the rock crevices revealing shapes, lines and textures depending on the tide and the weather. The people who frequent the ocean baths, from the dedicated 5am lap swimmers to the late night loners, Dino has witnessed it all while concentrating on painting 'en plein air'. He comments that Merewether is “always changing, there's never ending views for paintings. The challenge is capturing a moment in time and the feeling it evokes which is what I'm trying to do”.
He grew up in the Newcastle suburb of Tighes Hill, with a strong need to be creative. He started drawing from an early age and left Newcastle for Sydney at age 17. He spent time studying at art school there and in Melbourne where he lived for 38 years, painting and exhibiting, running his own business and raising a family. He recently returned to Newcastle about 4 years ago to concentrate on his art full-time. This will be Consalvo's 4th solo exhibition since his return to Newcastle.
Merewether – a transition is his new exhibition coming up at Gallery 139 in Hamilton from 21 September – 8 October, for more information visit gallery139.com.au
FIND THIS ARTICLE IN THE CURRENT ISSUE OF HUNTER LIFESTYLE MAGAZINE ~ SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016 | PAGE 68