Blog 105 – Arty McLaren Vale

I realised that in my things to do in McLaren Vale blogs, I have completely forgotten to talk about the fabulous Art scene. Very remiss of me.

McLaren Vale is home to Australia’s richest landscape art prize, The Fleurieu Art Prize ( Founded in 1998, the $50,000 main prize is much sought after, and the entrants are extremely high quality. As you would expect in a region with such an illustrious prize, there is a lot for the art enthusiast to discover in McLaren Vale.

A favourite starting place for me is Red Poles, Roz always has a fabulous exhibition going, and is a strong supporter of the local art scene. She runs numerous art classes, brilliant school holiday classes for the kids, a fabulous ‘arty apron’ auction to raise money for the local CFS, as well as a beautiful café and B&B (

Part of her current exhibition has some amazing fabric works by local legend Quenby Sinclair, I have a couple myself.

At DogRidge (, resident artist Jen Wright always has some awesome works on display in the gallery at their cellar door (Bagshaws Rd, McLaren Vale). The pictures show some of her current pieces.  I am biased, as Jen is my mother-in-law, but they really are worth checking out!

Jen Wright's finches and above left, her blue wren

Penny’s Hill has excellent regular exhibitions in their cellar door and restaurant (, as does Chapel Hill ( – both being linked with established Adelaide Galleries. Fox Creek’s gallery ( always has something interesting to check out, and David Dridan is established at Tintara Winery in the Main Street. The Barn, also in the Main Street (, always has local artists on display. There is a Fleurieu Art Trail- see brochure- with loads more galleries to see.

Anyway, come down to visit McLaren Vale and, as the saying goes, let one thing lead to another!