Thinawan exhibits at Sculpture Park

June 18, 2009

Ceramic Break Sculpture Park has the pleasure to host a show by local Croppa Creek Bowling Club manager and Kamilaroi/Bundjalung artist Mark Gibson: ‘Thinawan: Our Land Our Animals’. Thinawan is Kamilaroi for emu, a nickname Mark got when he was a fast track and field sprinter in school.

Mark Gibson says in his artist profile: I was born on the common of Moree in 1962; I was the middle child of thirteen children. I was born to poverty and a very violent father. When I turned fourteen, I ran away from home and started travelling and working all over Australia. It was not until I had my own family that I returned to my home town of Moree after 25 years.

It was then that I started painting and putting my life experiences on canvas as I have seen so much of this vast land and its beautiful animals.

Mark has always sketched and drawn cartoons and has shared his talent, including a year giving weekly lessons in cartoon drawing at his daughter’s school. It wasn’t until he returned to Moree with his family that a chance request "to do a couple of paintings" for a friend of his then boss, led him to making his art the focus of his life and has been painting seriously for three years now.

In that time he has had an impressive number of shows and many of his paintings have been sold to private collectors both in Australia and overseas.

Thinawan: Our Land Our Animals features Australian reptiles, fish and animals in their unique environment. Mark paints using a range of strong colours to convey his "life experiences on canvas.’ The result is impressive as Mark draws the viewer into his narratives.

Mark’s two young daughters, Kalah and Courtney who are 12 and 13 years old will also be exhibiting with their father. Mark says they wanted to paint when they saw what he was doing and he encouraged them.

It seems that the artistic gene runs deep in Mark’s family and he has several cousins and nephews who are also artists.

It is worth making a date in your diary for the weekend of June 6 and 7 to attend the Memorial Day at Myall Creek on the Saturday which commemorates those who died during the Myall Creek Massacre last century. There will be a guest speaker of national renown and it is well worth a look.

And then, join us on Sunday for a fabulous day of art and live entertainment.

Tamworth Regional Councillor Russell Webb who has know Mark and his family for over ten years and a committed fan of his work will be officially opening the show on the day.

The Nationally recognised ‘Gomeroi Dance Company’ will be travelling from Tamworth to perform traditional Gomeroi dances incorporating music and the Gomeroi language to tell stories with meaning, as seen at the Tamworth Equine Centre opening, Myall Creek Ceremonies and numerous Tamworth Country Music Festival appearances. These performances aim to promote Aboriginal Culture, awareness and understanding.

Lunch and refreshments will be provided and entry is via gold coin donation. Time: Sunday June 7 from 12-5 pm.

Where: Ceramic Break Sculpture Park which is located 15km south of Warialda, NSW on the Bingara Road. For information phone 6729 4147 or visit our website

The exhibition continues through July. Everyone is welcome. Don’t miss it!