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Here’s the scoop!   Over the next month, I’ll be bringing you the latest from Montsalvat in Eltham. Exhibitions, artists, classes, the works.

I had the best fun this afternoon.  Sana Kojicin, Monstalvat’s Arts Assistant, gave me a guided tour of the grounds and began introducing me to some of the artists in residence.  Oh bliss oh joy! I came away with a photo card full of shots and a book titled “My Story. Tales from a Pioneer of Montsalvat” by Sonia Skipper.  Guess what I’ll be reading this weekend?

I’m only just beginning to get a grip on the history and stories of this magical place.  After my weekends reading I hope to be in a better position to fill you in on that front.

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So as a little taster of things to come, I’ve decided to show you some of the many sculptures Montsalvat has to offer. These gorgeous nudes above and below were scattered around the grounds.

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Sculpture by Helen Lempriere.

This sculpture, below, sits at the front of the Great Hall.

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The four sculptures below are inside the Montsalvat Chapel, the last building to be completed before Justus Jorgensen ( the founder of Montsalvat) died in 1975. Despite failing health, Justus taught himself to drive a small cubdozer in order to move bluestones to the building site. Completion of the chapel became his obsession as he made it known this was where he wanted to be buried.  These sculptures depict important figures in the early days of Montsalvat.

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Justus Jorgensen

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Sonia Skipper and Helen Lempriere

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Matcham Skipper facing to the side and Arthur Munday

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Mervyn Skipper.

Montsalvat began in the the middle of the 1930’s.  From its beginnings it was a centre of creative activity. Its central function seventy five years later hasn’t changed, though obviously the detail of that creative activity has. Stay tuned to find out how over the next month.

Their website is a great place to start for general information.