Telling Tales

The Limestone Coast, from Mount Gambier to Bordertown, is rich with untold histories, strange happenings and tall tales: what curious tales do you know about your part of this vast region?

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Telling Tales is a community stitch project led by artists Jo Fife and Sera Waters. This is an opportunity for anyone with links to our beautiful region to share insights, knowledge, and tales from past happenings, passed along knowledge, family histories, regional species, weather events or mysteries that will become part of a unique artwork which may become part of the Riddoch Art Gallery collection.

Telling Tales is for both beginner and experienced stitchers. Contributions can be as simple or complex as you choose. For inspiration and guides on basic stitches, how-to videos, tips and examples of completed tales can be found via the Telling Tales Facebook page at: @TellingTalesLimestoneCoast

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Jo Fife was born in Penola, South Australia and has lived most of her life in the region. Jo has worked as a professional artist for the past 30 years, exhibiting locally and interstate, taking out awards for textiles and painting. In this time Jo has curated exhibitions, tutored school and adult groups, mentored young emerging artists and disability groups, worked on community art projects, facilitating the Multicultural Art Project and lectured in textiles and printmaking at TAFE SA.

Sera Waters is a South Australian based artist known for creating artworks invested with a darkly stitched meticulousness. In 2018 she completed her PhD which investigated settler colonial home-making patterns and practices and examined her family histories as inherited genealogical ghostscapes. Waters has exhibited across Australia and is represented by Hugo Michell Gallery.

A full biography, exhibition list and more can be found at www.serawaters.com.au

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Register here, in person, or email the Riddoch Art Gallery or Walkway Gallery:

Riddoch Art Gallery
1 Bay Road, Mount Gambier
P 08 8721 2563  E swong@mountgambier.sa.gov.au

Walkway Gallery
43 Woolshed Street, Bordertown
P 08 8752 1044  E naomifallon@tatiara.sa.gov.au

You will receive the Telling Tales stitch pack which includes blue and green threads, 22 x 22 canvas, a needle, further instructions, a story card, and return envelope.

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  • It can be helpful to make a plan on paper which can be lightly drawn onto your design in pencil (if you will be stitching over the lines), or alternatively you can use a washout fabric pen (available from craft stores).
  • Please keep your stitching at least 2cm from the edges of the fabric so none of your tale is lost when
  • stitched together with other contributions.
  • You can create interesting embroideries by varying the blues and greens you use for different parts of your stitched tale. Embroidery threads come in skeins of 6 threads, so feel free to separate these out and vary your use of 1, 2 or 3 threads at a time to create darker and lighter stitching.
  • Simple stitches such as running stitch, back stitch or cross stitch can be very effective, as can more complex techniques such as French knots, chain stitch or stem stitch; guides of all of these can be found readily online or via the Telling Tales Facebook page @TellingTalesLimestoneCoast
  • Be sure to tie off your threads on the back of the canvas so as they don’t unravel.

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Along with your embroidery please write a small description of your tale on the story card supplied, and send these together in the return envelope to the Riddoch Art Gallery (1 Bay Road, Mount Gambier SA 5290) by Friday 18 September 2020.

Your stitched image and story will be recorded and then included alongside other contributions to form a large artwork encompassing many tales of the Limestone Coast region.

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Like the Facebook page @TellingTalesLimestoneCoast and share your Telling Tales journey with us by tagging us or adding the hashtag #tellingtales to your caption

We’re all on instagram, so please feel free to tag us in any #tellingtales posts

@jofifeart  @serawaters  @the_riddoch  @walkwaygallery  @countryarts_sa

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1 Bay Road, Mount Gambier SA 5290
Phone 08 8721 2563

OPEN Wednesday to Sunday, 10am-2pm


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The City of Mount Gambier acknowledges the Boandik Peoples as the Traditional Custodians of the land and water our city sits upon today.

We respect and recognise the deep feelings of attachment and the spiritual relationship our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples have with the land and water.

Image: Belinda Bonney, Reconciliation of the Nation: we all walk together as one (detail)