Featured Tapestries

Bridle Track, Hill End

ATW is delighted to be working with Bathurst Regional Art Gallery (BRAG) and artist Luke Sciberras on a new tapestry commission Bridle Track, Hill End. The commission is jointly funded by BRAG and the Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Society (BRAGS) to celebrate 50 years of fundraising.

Luke Sciberras is an artist with deep connection to the Bathurst region. He resides in Hill End, New South Wales, a region he considers a significant site in Australian modern art. The historic former gold-mining village has a long association with many noted Australian artists including Russell Drysdale, Margaret Olley, John Olsen AO OBE and Brett Whiteley and boasts the Hill End Artists in Residence Program overseen by BRAG.

The subject of Bridle Track, Hill End is based on the artist’s local surroundings, and reveal a deep connection to landscape and place. It has been used perennially by Sciberras as a source of many paintings, and also hosted many memorable expectations with fellow artists such as Elisabeth Cummings, Anna Zahalka, Tamara Dean, Ben Quilty and Guy Maestri.

The tapestry is based on a watercolour that Sciberras gifted to his former neighbour as a departing gift. The artist’s studio is housed in a former Methodist Church built in 1870, next door is a community nurse. Sciberras developed a friendship with nurse Jim Schumacher, who also provided support for the artist when he developed myocarditis. Sciberras painted the work as a gift to Schumacher as a gesture of farewell; the work symbolises both a friendship and a sense of place.

“For more than twenty years I have travelled up and down the famous and precarious Bridle Track from Hill End. It is a vast and wild landscape stretching between Hill End and Bathurst which can only be traversed by four-wheel drive as the very old hand built road has many twists and ruts, but that in itself is part of its appeal.

In this enormous no-mans-land of common, crown lands and abandoned farms the Macquarie and Turon rivers meet, and the road rises and falls from the crossings and causeways as dramatically as a roller coaster.”

- Luke Sciberras

About the artist

Described as a bon vivant, networker, curator and painter’s painter, Sciberras graduated from Sydney’s National Art School in 1997. He was a studio assistant for several prominent Australian artists who became his mentors. Artists include Martin Sharp, Elizabeth Cummings, John Olsen, John Firth-Smith and Gary Shead.

Sciberras has had numerous solo exhibitions over that past three decades. His work has featured in exhibitions at Manly Regional Art Gallery & Museum (with Euan Macleod 2018), Glass House Port Macquarie (2015), BRAG (2013, 2009). His work is in private and public collections including regional galleries in Newcastle, Port Macquarie, Bathurst, Orange and Penrith, the Balnaves Foundation, Artbank, and Parliament House, Canberra. Sciberras is represented by King Street Gallery on William, Sydney and Scott Livesey Galleries, Melbourne.