Yarra Valley artist a hit at RACV Club

RACV Club Members love buying Yarra Valley artist Agnes Szetey's work after staying at Healesville Country Club & Resort

Healesville artist Agnes Szetey is inspired by her surroundings and her paintings of wildlife, flowers and landscapes are popular with Club Members.

Her miniature canvases and colourful pots are sold at the Lobby Shop at Healesville Country Club & Resort, while her large oil paintings are displayed at her gallery on Badger Creek Road.

Agnes says she has been selling her paintings at the Country Cub for nearly 20 years.

“I had one lady who loved the view of Mt Riddell from the Members’ Lounge and she asked me to paint it,” Agnes says. “I wasn’t sure what mood she wanted, so I painted two, one sunny and one misty and she bought both of them.”

She says Club Members are often looking for a memento of their time when they visit or stay at the Healesville Country Club & Resort.

“I paint Australian wildlife, kookaburras and parrots, flowers and forest scenes, a nice variety so that people can choose.”

Pictured above: Artist Agnes Szetey painitng in her studio

Her gallery is one the region’s attractions and here she displays her large canvases depicting desert, coastal and historical scenes as well as the natural beauty around Healesville.

I absolutely love the fern gullies, anything to do with Healesville, especially the forests, that’s my speciality,” says Agnes, who has been painting for 60 years.

“I’m self-taught. I started going to art school, but they wanted me to give up my ideas and I’m a very independent, stubborn person and I said I’d rather stick to what I like doing,” she says. However, she did study the old masters’ techniques for six months at Monash University.

“I learnt a lot and I was commissioned to do six portraits. A Greek community asked me to paint St John’s statue sitting atop a hill with a Greek village in the background and that painting is hanging in St Patricks in Lilydale,” she says. “But I don’t do portraits anymore; I don’t have the patience. I prefer lovely nature and flowers and birds.”

Her creative space is a “cramped corner” of her house, where she can watch TV and spend time with her husband, Frank.

“I paint anything from four to 10 hours a day and if I had a studio, I would be separated from Frank. While I paint, I can talk to him and if I am doing a very big, complicated work I say to him, ‘Sweetie, just don’t interrupt me for a while,’ because I get very engrossed in my thoughts and my painting. So, he’s very nice. He understands.”

Agnes has dozens of stories about how much people have appreciated her paintings.

“We used to travel a lot and when we were in Broken Hill, I did a large painting of the desert and purple hills and this woman who lives in Healesville absolutely loved it. After buying it, she came back to the gallery and told me she’d had a carpet woven in the same colours. It goes from the front door up to my painting.”

Agnes and Frank moved from Chirnside Park to Healesville 27 years ago, once their two children were adults. “It was always my dream to come out here and have a gallery,” Agnes says. “Everything that I wanted came true.”

Plan and book now

Get the best out of your visit to the Healesville Country Club & Resort by staying on one of our specially designed packages and experience all the Yarra Valley has to offer. For bookings and enquiries please contact Reservations on (03) 5962 4899.

Agnes Szetey’s work is also on display at Healesville Fine Art Gallery, 278 Badger Creek Rd, Badger Creek. Phone ahead to check opening hours, (03) 5962 1129.

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