Visit Pilgrim Creek Studios
One Hour from EastLink, Melbourne
By Appointment Only – Phone 0411 480 384
Article by Amber Rhodes
The rolling green hills of West Gippsland have long been associated with agriculture. The dairy industry and growing potatoes quickly come to mind. These days it is also known as a location to experience locally produced gourmet foods and wines, accompanied by an exciting choice of well-appointed accommodation to make your visit complete. A short drive, just over an hour from the heart of Melbourne, West Gippsland has yet another hidden treasure to tantalise and excite the senses – a thriving collection of passionate artists who are making waves within their own areas of expertise!
Open Studios West Gippsland was an idea born to give art enthusiasts the opportunity to explore, not only the artist’s studios, but this beautiful region and all it has to offer. This journey of discovery is not only the chance to ask questions and meet the creator, but to unlock the meaning behind art in a relaxed and friendly environment. Open studio events aim to give people the very opposite experience as to what they would expect in a gallery where completed artworks would be formally displayed on stark white walls. Instead, this is about finding out what goes on ‘behind the scenes’, seeing where the art is created and how it moves from its raw and natural state to the finished piece.
Kerrie Warren, who has been a part of these weekends since their inception, is not only passionate about her own artwork, but also the work of the other talented artists that live in this truly beautiful region. Kerrie strongly believes that the art trail itself, and the creative minds behind it, are the pinnacle to this picturesque destination that is so accessible from Melbourne. Close enough for an easy day trip yet far enough to escape the hustle and bustle of the city for a weekend away, it is a fantastic opportunity to see a truly diverse range of artwork. Visitors are welcomed and encouraged to make their way to various studios to browse, to discover and develop a deeper connection with the artwork, and even buy directly from the creator.
Kerrie Warren is just one of the fascinating artists that you will meet on your tour of the area. A contemporary abstract expressionist, Kerrie is both a painter and potter who creates large scale works on linen, ceramic sculptures and installations that really must be seen to be believed! Monumental paintings unleash a sense of place and how she feels about it, rather than what appears to the eye. Constantly pushing boundaries, the artist explores the forces of Mother Nature and weaves the energy of her seasons into breathtaking creations. Open Studios West Gippsland gives Kerrie the opportunity to show off her extraordinary artworks, and in return gives visitors a hidden insight into the ever evolving philosophy behind them.
You will thoroughly enjoy walking through the large purpose-built painting studio, and on the same property in Crossover in stark contrast, the old dairy which now houses the pottery. Here she, and resident artist Judi Money explore the delicate balance of life through ceramics, all the while enjoying the view of the garden and an occasional visit from the curious finches that pop in and out at their leisure. It’s a very special place, one among many along the art trail where visitors have an opportunity to see where the creative ideas are born, a place where one can stop and take in a breath of fresh air whilst enjoying the spectacular scenery and general ambience of West Gippsland.
So close to Melbourne, this self-guided tour is the ultimate in combining art and a picture perfect destination!