While the Hunter Valley might be synonymous with great wine, the region’s outstanding art will be on show when Sculpture in the Vineyards takes over the wineries from 31 October to 29 November 2015.
The annual celebration of art, food and wine takes place in historic Wollombi village, with neighbouring vineyards and cellar doors showcasing over 100 outdoor sculptures in five temporary sculpture parks. Situated along the picturesque Wollombi Valley Wine Trail, visitors can enjoy a diverse range of art while sampling some of the fine wine and fresh produce for which the Hunter Valley is famous.
The month long program includes a range of events to suit all ages and tastes, including a family picnic day on Sunday 1st November and twilight tours throughout the month that highlight the history of the Aboriginal people in Wollombi. Located on the Great North Road, Wollombi’s cultural significance is abundant with numerous well-preserved Aboriginal rock engravings and lookouts at Devils Rock, Flat Rock Lookout and Finchley Trig.
Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter and Central Coast Scot MacDonald said Sculpture in the Vineyards is supported by the NSW Government as part of its Regional Flagship Events Program.
“The Regional Flagship Events program is a fantastic initiative managed by our State’s tourism and major events agency Destination NSW. The Program supports the marketing of events such as Sculpture in the Vineyards which are important contributors to driving overnight visitors to our beautiful region,” he said.
According to Destination NSW CEO Sandra Chipchase, “Events like Sculpture in the Vineyards showcase the creative diversity of the Hunter and encourage visitors to explore the variety of experiences the region has to offer.”
“While it’s famous for its Semillon and Shiraz, Australia’s oldest wine growing region has a strong arts scene which is celebrated through a year-round calendar of events, such as Sculpture in the Vineyards, Dungog Festival, Jazz in the Vines and the Christmas Lights Spectacular to name a few.”
From romantic retreats to wilderness getaways and self-contained cottages amongst the vines, the Wollombi area offers a wide range of unique accommodation options providing a great base for a visit to the area.
Here are some of the must-do arts experiences the Hunter has to offer:
1. Be one of the first to experience this year’s Sculpture in the Vineyard during their opening night celebrations at Wollombi Wines on Saturday 31 October. If you can’t make opening night, a number of other exciting celebrations will be taking place throughout month including a family picnic day on Sunday 1 November and the Small Sculptures Show from the 14-30 November
2. During Sculpture in the Vineyards experienced Ngurra Bu Aboriginal guideswill hold three Dreamtime story tours exploring the Yengo National Park in the Wollombi Valley. Join one of the tours on the 7, 14 or 21 November and discover the interesting Indigenous history of the region
3. Well known Australian glass artist Setsuko Ogishi‘s studio is one of only a handful of glassblowing studios open to the public in Australia. Learn the art of glass blowing yourself in a studio workshop with Setsuko
4. Meet the maker and pick-up locally made art as well as award-winning produce and artisan products at the Handmade Hunter Markets. Held at the stunning Kevin Sobels Wines in Pokolbin, these markets are held on the 2nd and 4th Saturday each month
5. Visit a local gallery to enjoy original art and displays by local and Australian artists. Be sure to visit Emma’s Cottage Vineyard Gallery the Greg Wilson Gallery , Old Fire Shed Gallery and Undercliff Winery and Gallery.
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For more ideas on arts and culture experiences in NSW go to visitnsw.com.