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8 August 2022

Still life explores more than just objects

An exhibition of new work by local artist René Bolten

Rene Bolten - bread and polish

René Bolten - Slice of bread and shoe polish 2022. Oil on canvas. 28 x 36 cm. (Image courtesy the artist.)

An exhibtion of new work by local artist René Bolten is now open at the Tweed Regional Gallery.

In Still life: more than just objects, Bolten explores intimate connections to familiar objects. He re-visits objects to expand their storytelling potential through unexpected combinations and arrangements.

“The beautiful exhibition has deeply poetic feelings of memory and nostalgia with delightful punctuations of humour,” said Susi Muddiman OAM, Director of the Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre.

The paintings depict familiar, everyday things such as an apple, shoe polish, bread and a water spray bottle – but to Bolten they are more than just ‘things’.

To him, they are memory holders, story tellers and personal time capsules. They are special connections to his past. Bolten was born in 1954 in The Hague, Netherlands but travelled to Australia on a holiday in his 20’s and has lived here ever since.

“René has lived and worked in our region for more than 30 years so it’s a great priviledge for us to present this solo exhibition,” Ms Muddiman said.

Many of the paintings have personal connections to family and his childhood in the Netherlands and the symbolism is personal and enigmatic. His masterful skill as a still life painter is clear in this show and the softness of vision and touch of paint is all part of his moving eloquance as an artist.

Still life: more than just objects is on display until 20 November 2022.

René  Bolten will present a still life oil painting workshop on Sunday 28 August, 10am – 4pm, $190. Bookings essential: rbolten.eventbrite.com.au

Rene Bolten

Artist René Bolten working in his studio​.


Photo 1: Bread and polish

CAPTION: René Bolten - Slice of bread and shoe polish 2022. Oil on canvas. 28 x 36 cm. (Image courtesy the artist.)

Photo 2: Rene Bolten

CAPTION: Artist René Bolten working in his studio.

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Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre
2 Mistral Road (corner of Tweed Valley Way, Murwillumbah South)
PO Box 816 Murwillumbah, NSW 2484

The Gallery is open from Wednesday to Sunday 10 am to 5 pm (Café 8:30 am to 4 pm).


We wish to recognise the generations of the local Aboriginal people of the Bundjalung Nation who have lived in and derived their physical and spiritual needs from these forests, rivers, lakes and streams over many thousands of years as the traditional custodians of these lands.
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