International Women’s Day 2023 #EmbraceEquity

On International Women’s Day we celebrate by sharing some of our favourite artworks by women artists who led the way by challenging traditions, exploring new ideas and influencing the direction of Australian art​.​​

This years theme is #EmbraceEquity.

​I​n the current global climate of shifting attitudes towards gender biases, the celebration and recognition of women artists is growing around the world. Such​ ​interest and support of women artists is not a new phenomenon, tending to follow the ebbs and flows parallel with general cultural trends.

Australian female artists have been integral to our artistic culture throughout history, with women students at art school, including a significant number of Australian artists studying in Europe; women artists represented in national and international art exhibitions, competitions and prizes; women as active members of art societies; teaching art students; reproduced​ ​in art publications; working as professional artists, including commissioned positions such as Official War Artist; and collected by major institutions as well as private collectors.

TIERNAN, As above so Below with Songlines, 222054, 150x90cm Jessie Scarvell Glenalvon Murrurundi 1895 COULTER, DI - Cousin Elizabeth NT STOKES Girl in Fur Collar, London Emily Kngwarray Women's Dreaming

A Closer Look At… Horace Hurtle Trenerry

Despite critical rating as a first-rate off-shoot of French Impressionism (Nigel Gosling Tate review in the London Observer 27 Jan 1963) many of us are unaware of this talented artist and his unique portrayal of the Australian landscape. Although he never travelled overseas, Trenerry was aware of artists whose influence can be seen in his painting, such as Whistler and Van Gogh, and Trenerry’s work is recognised for his use of textured brushstrokes and his ability to use colour to create atmosphere. He was familiar with the ideas of modernism, particularly through artist friends, especially Kathleen Sauerbier following her studies in London in the 1920s. On her return to Australia, Sauerbier was drawn to the Fleurieu Peninsula where she crossed paths with Trenerry, who regularly captured this beautiful landscape of both pastoral and coastal appeal. Another important influence was Hans Heysen and a close observation of the Adelaide Hills can be found in Trenerry’s artworks.

To take A Closer Look At… Horace Hurtle Trenerry – read here

To view the exhibition on-line and download the illustrated essay – click here

We welcome you to the Gallery to view the paintings, on show until 10 March 2023.

290120 TRENERRY Woodside Pastoral
290120 TRENERRY Woodside Pastoral

Three Exhibitions at LDFA

Robert Clinch: Life on Earth

Murray Griffin: Earth and Beyond

Horace Trenerry: Painting the Earth

Three concurrent solo shows by artists we believe deserve greater recognition for their contribution to the Australian Art story. Contemporary Melbourne artist Robert Clinch and his urban capriccios which are based on real places, allowing a sense of recognition and familiarity to the viewer. Robert adapts the elements to suit the message he seeks to present, making comment on universal aspects of humanity and life on earth. Murray Griffin (1903 – 1992) is admired for his lithographs of birds, but less well known for his paintings of landscapes and the spiritual influence on his work, culminating in The Journey series. Horace Trenerry (1899 – 1958) has been described as the Monet of South Australia. Little known outside his home state, his focus on the Australian landscape captures observed details, light and atmosphere.

Preview the artworks on our website and download the e-catalogues linked below to learn more about each of these underrated artists.

Robert ClinchPreview on our website or click on catalogue image to download
Murray GriffinPreview on our website or click on catalogue image to download
Horace TrenerryPreview on our website or click on catalogue image to download.

Helen S. Tiernan : Storied Country

Helen S. Tiernan’s most recent paintings included in our current exhibition, Storied Country, continue her themes of the Australian landscape as a repository for memory and stories associated with indigenous culture, colonial encounters and life today, expressed through a new visual device – the quirky images of square stud bulls and corpulent cows. Whilst a reminder of the ubiquitous cattle in her native Gippsland, they also reference colonial paintings (as well as William Dobell and John Kelly) and point to exploitative farming and the destruction of local Indigenous culture, fauna and lands. In The Strangers, the cows are provisionally taped onto the canvas, highlighting their presence as outsiders in the landscape, contrasted against the majestic river red gum, asserting a proud indigenous presence and also referencing the landscapes of the Australian Impressionists of the Heidelberg School.

Helen Tiernan The Strangers 2022
Helen Tiernan The Strangers 2022

View the paintings at our Gallery until 18 November 2022 and download the catalogue and watch the video of the opening on our website – click here to view

Storied Country – Opening Video

Helen Tiernan at opening
Marie Geissler at opening of Helen S. Tiernan Storied Country
Steve Dimopoulos at opening of Helen S. Tiernan Storied Country

The video of our opening of our current exhibition, Helen S. Tiernan: Storied Country is now available to view on our website with acknowledgement of country by Helen Tiernan; an insightful discussion of the paintings by Dr Marie Geissler and official opening by Steve Dimopoulos MP. The exhibition of paintings is showing until 18 November 2022.

Helen can be described as a visual cultural historian who acknowledges her cross-cultural heritage (Irish and Indigenous) and who brings a sense of indigenous presence to her work with both nuance and complexity. Through her atmospheric landscapes painted with great technical skill, Helen highlights difficult and serious issues with a subtlety, gentleness and humour. Her oevure bears the influence of Australian art history and numerous literary sources including Bill Gammage, Bruce Pascoe, Lynne Kelley and Ian McLean.

To view images of the artworks, download the exhibition catalogue and watch a video of the opening, please click here

Helen S Tiernan Storied Country catalogue cover
Helen S Tiernan Storied Country catalogue cover

Helen S. Tiernan: Storied Country Exhibition Opening Sat 22 Oct

Born in Gippsland, Helen S. Tiernan draws on her Irish and Aboriginal heritage to explore issues of identity; Black/White contact history; connection to and management of country; environmental concerns; and the experience of women. As well as drawing on her own experiences, she looks to art history and literary, historical and cultural references. Her landscapes build on her understanding of the land as a cultured space of ancient knowledge and deep memory; storied with songlines. By redirecting and transforming history through her own creative process Helen challenges us to revisit and reinterpret it.

“A central idea in my work is the importance of the Australian landscape as a repository or memory bank that is rich with Indigenous knowledge and stories associated with traditional life, colonial encounters and life today. The work is complex, layered and deliberately playful. The paintings are encoded with Indigenous symbols and patterns that express meanings that go deep into the unconscious, pointing to understandings related to the sentience, sacredness and power of the land which words can’t always capture. It is a way of allowing the viewer to engage more imaginatively with the painting and bring their own experiences into their reading of the works.”

Exhibition showing 22 October – 18 November 2022 : Preview the exhibition online

Exhibition to be opened Saturday 22 October at 2pm by Steve Dimopoulos MP, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events; Minister for Creative Industries. Please RSVP to

Download the catalogue – colour illustrated with essay by Dr Marie Geissler, Visiting Associate Researcher, University of Wollongong; Associate Researcher, National Museum of Australia, Canberra and author of Dreaming the Land, 2022. Dr Geissler will also speak at the exhibition opening.

Read further about the artist

TIERNAN, As above so Below with Songlines, 222054, 150x90cm
TIERNAN, As above so Below with Songlines, 222054, 150x90cm

AAADA Sydney Art Fair 2022

The Australian Antique & Art Dealers Association is excited to be back in Sydney. Following a successful art fair in Malvern, the AAADA Art Fair, Sydney is showing at the White Bay Cruise Terminal from 15 – 18 September with a number of member participants showing fine art; jewellery; furniture and more.

Lauraine Diggins Fine Art is looking forward to connecting with our Sydney clientele and visitors and is showing a selection of Australian painting, works on paper and decorative arts including works by George Baldessin; Rupert Bunny; Stephen Bowers; Robert Clinch; Charles Conder; Bessie Davidson; John Dent; Robert Dickerson; Ethel Carrick Fox; James Gleeson; Sydney Long; John Ford Paterson; John Perceval; Jane Price; Gloria Petyarr; Iso Rae; Elizabeth (Lilla) Reidy; Henry Rielly; Helen Tiernan; Constance Stokes; Fred Williams; Brett Whiteley; Zhou Xiaoping.

We have a limited number of complimentary tickets so please contact us if you are interested in securing yours.

Congratulations to Elizabeth Kunoth Kngwarray – Finalist John Leslie Prize

Elizabeth Kunoth Kngwarray has been selected as a finalist in this year’s John Leslie Art Prize for Landscape at Gippsland Art Gallery. The judges made the final choice of 50 paintings from 455 entries focussing on the general theme of landscape. Elizabeth’s painting, Yam Seeds depicts the seeds from the bush yam, whose flowers, leaves and seeds are important in her country in Utopia, N.T. for both food and medicine. During the brief flowering of the plant, the desert is brightened by a tapestry of colour and the wind through the leaves produces a captivating sense of movement. Elizabeth covers her canvas in tiny, meticulous flicks of colour, giving a shimmering effect in both colour and movement. Elizabeth is the daughter of Nancy Petyarr, one of the celebrated Petyarr sisters and has been painting for around 20 years. She has been a finalist in the Wynne Prize, AGNSW and is represented in the National Gallery of Australia and the Art Gallery of South Australia.

Elizabeth Kunoth Kngwarray Yam Seeds 222006 detail
Elizabeth Kunoth Kngwarray Yam Seeds 222006 detail

Position Vacant


This position is one within a very small team, comprising two Gallery Directors and a Gallery Manager. It is important for the person in this role to have the initiative, energy, ability and commitment to cover a broad array of tasks as and when required, to be responsible for them and to work in an often unsupervised environment. Often duties cross over and supports all roles.

Lauraine Diggins Fine Art specialises in Australian colonial, impressionist, modern, contemporary and Australian Aboriginal painting, sculpture and decorative arts. Sourcing major European masterworks upon request.

The Gallery, discreetly located in North Caulfield, has built strong working relationships with private, corporate and institutional collectors and has been responsible for the placement of many significant artworks into public & private collections.

The Gallery works directly with clients to specifically source artworks for private or public collections; or to place artworks with us for sale. The Gallery also shows select exhibitions throughout the year and occasionally participates in art fairs. We manage in-house artwork and exhibition installation, curation, research, artwork packaging, promotion/marketing, media, photography, video production, design, stock management, website management, database management and all in the company of the Gallery dog, Roxy the Kelpie.


  • A proactive self-motivated person to support the delivery of exhibitions and day-to-day operation of the Gallery
  • Demonstrated experience working in the arts industry or similar environment
  • Demonstrable high level IT skills using Apple Mac platform
  • Administrative experience with demonstrated interpersonal, written, oral communication and organisational skills
  • The ability to work both independently and as a part of a small team
  • Ability to work in an environment with competing priorities
  • A passion for people, arts and events
  • Do you have a background in any of the following: marketing, accounting, curatorship, catalogue production or other??

As an employee of the Lauraine Diggins Fine Art you will be part of an inclusive culture. This role is permanent part-time, days of the week are negotiable. Evening or weekend exhibition openings will occasionally be requested. 

If you have the skills, abilities and attitude to take on this position please enquire here. If you require further information please also email us by clicking here.

Gallery hours 10am-6pm, Tuesday-Friday.
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Vale Cowboy Loy Pwerl

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are advised this post includes the name of a person who has died.

It is with great sadness that we pay our respects to senior elder Cowboy Loy Pwerl who died Wednesday 30 March in Alice Springs hospital. Cowboy was a leader within the painting movement at Utopia with his intricate designs often depicting the nesting place of the bush turkey. Cowboy was a senior custodian of a series of Dreaming sites in Utopia, on the western side of the Sandover River. He was an Eastern Anmatyerr speaker who lived his life on country, mostly at Iylenty, and acquired his nickname from his days as a stockman. In his paintings, Cowboy delighted in a strong use of harmonious colour, moving away from more subdued ochres of earlier works, whilst maintaining his signature optical illusional style. On a simple level, the geometric patterning laid out across the canvas in tiny coloured dots, represents the bush turkey as it searches for seeds to eat.

Our thoughts are with Cowboy’s family, particularly Carol, Elizabeth and Genevieve.

Cowboy is represented in the National Gallery of Victoria; the Art Gallery of South Australia; the Melbourne Museum; Benalla Art Gallery; and numerous private collections across Australia and internationally.

Cowboy Loy Pwerl