Morpeth Art Gallery is one of the Hunters’ prime destinations. Located in the historical village of Morpeth in the Lower Hunter Valley – just two hours driving time from Sydney- the Morpeth Gallery has an excellent selection of fine traditional Australian landscape and wildlife art.
With an incredible range of artwork by recognised and awarded painters, the art gallery specialises in investment art, assuring you that our pieces will not only enhance your home or office but will also appreciate in value over time.
The Gallery was originally opened by Trevor Richards and has had the privilege to feature works from famous Australian artists from all over the country such as: Ann Morton, Bill Freeman, Bret “Mon” Garling, D’Arcy W Doyle, Edward Spessot, Garry Fleming, Gordon Hanley, Graham Cox, Heidi Willis, Helen Fitzgerald, James Hough, John Bradley, John Cornwell, John McCartin, William T Cooper, and more.
Morpeth, founded in 1821 is Australia’s second oldest river port. It is an historic village, located on the banks of the Hunter River, in the Hunter Valley, NSW, 10 minutes from Maitland, 40 minutes from Wine Country & Port Stephens blue water wonderland, and an hour and a half from Sydney.
Trevor Richards opened Morpeth Investment Art Gallery for business in 1991 as part of the Campbell’s Store Craft Centre complex, in Morpeth’s main cobblestone lined street.
Since then it has doubled in size twice, and is located adjacent to Campbell’s Store. Morpeth Gallery now comprises a Landscape/Still Life wing and a Wildlife wing, each featuring 150 original paintings on the wall at any one time, with a third section dedicated to Giclee limited edition & open edition prints and other giftware such as greeting cards, children’s books, illustrated books, mugs, coasters & snack trays featuring the work of the artists represented at the gallery.
For twenty years the gallery has specialized in selling only Traditional Australian Art – landscapes, seascapes & wildlife, by many of Australia’s most renowned artists. The artists invited to exhibit their works at the gallery are all professional, dedicated artists & they must be published artists, or be an artist who has the potential to be published in many ways. Art is not a hobby for these artists, it’s a business.
Visitors come into the gallery & are awestruck by the caliber of art they see for sale on the walls. When we explain that what they are looking at are the works of published artists, they often ask us, ‘What do you mean by published artist?’
Having an artists work ‘in print’ in multiple forms, means their name and images are recognized by many individuals, and it is the way that an artists work continues to increase in value year after year, the same way shares or a house might do. Each artwork is then purchased by art investors – to be enjoyed & yes to make them money in the long term.
It is estimated that one in four households in Australia contain an image by d’Arcy Doyle. It might be a print, biscuit tin, calendar, placemats, mug, tapestry etc…
Wildlife artist Garry Fleming illustrates & writes children’s books. Millions of copies have been published worldwide in more than 55 languages.
Brett Jarrett spends 6 months of each year in the Antarctic sketching and illustrating for UK reference books on cold climate species.
John Bradley has published two coffee table style books, DVD’s on how to paint inside & outside & has more than 150 published prints.
Natalie Jane Parker has a contract with giftware giant Ashdene. 24 of her images have so far been reproduced onto mugs, coasters & trays, sold in giftware stores Australia wide.
Other artists represented at the gallery are at the beginning or middle of their careers. Marine artist Paul Garling is in the process of publishing his first series of prints. Greeting cards will follow. His work is currently inexpensive has investment potential for the future.
John McCartin & James Hough have seen increases in their original artworks over the past 6 years, but their artworks will continue to increase in value at a rate of 10% per year over the next decade.
Some customers buy art only for investment, through a superfund for example, because they are taxed at a low rate & one can maximize the capital gain. They don’t necessarily care what it looks like, only that their investment will increase in value an average of 7-10% a year.
Throughout the year Morpeth Gallery will host solo art exhibitions featuring themed collections by the artists represented at the gallery & an annual Festival of Two Palettes, held the second weekend in March, when visitors can come and meet the artists in a relaxed environment and watch them at work at their easels.
Two 30 page booklets are available for purchase at the gallery: ‘How You Can Invest in Art’ discusses amongst many things, why one would invest in art, how to go about it, which artists to choose & why you should choose a published artist. The other booklet, ‘Meet the Artists at Morpeth Gallery’, has a profile page on each artist represented at Morpeth Gallery. Artists are also represented on the website.
At the time of writing this article some (but not all) of these artists include – Landscape: Kevin Best, John Bradley, John Cornwell, Graham Cox, Krysten Walker Cox, d’Arcy W Doyle, Werner Filipich, William (Bill) Freeman OAM, Paul Garling, John McCartin, Ann Morton, Ron Van Gennip, John Vander, Ramon Ward Thompson.
Wildlife: William T Cooper AO, Garry Fleming, Gordon Hanley, James Hough, Brett Jarrett, Stephen Jesic, Natalie Jane Parker.
Morpeth Gallery is also famous for teapots and hosts an annual Weird & Wonderful Novelty Teapot Exhibition every August. It’s a two week visual extravaganza featuring the amazing creativity of teapot makers from all over Australia and around the world. A staggering 3,887 teapots will be on display and for sale under the one roof in 2011. A teacosy competition compliments the teapot exhibition, with entries from all over Australia vying for $1,000 in prize money and vouchers. In 2010, 247 entries were received.
The print and collectables section of Morpeth Gallery specializes in Australian made pottery, Franz Porcelain, Lladro, Lilliput Lane Cottages, Cavellini Stationery & Patience Brewster figurines, as well as many teapots all year round.
Morpeth Bears has in 2011 joined Morpeth Gallery in the same area, specializing in the teddy bear brands such as Settler, Charlie Bears, Gund, Merrythought, Hermann Red & Green, Educa Cramer, Schildkrot & Steiff. Steiff bears & animals made in Germany are the ‘Rolls Royce’ of the teddy bear world. Antique and vintage Steiff bears regularly fetch prices in the hundreds of thousands of dollars at auctions around the world. They too may become investment pieces, just like an original artwork.
The Gallery runs various festivals and artist showcases during the year, as well as rare exhibitions, great shopping markets and wonderful events suited for the entire family. You may want to plan your next visit to Morpeth and take the opportunity to participate in one of our great events.
Morpeth Gallery is open for visits Thursday to Sunday and most public holidays between 10am and 5pm or by appointment.