Located in the High Street at Armadale, in a new and important headquarters of both historical and intrinsic value, their building is the former much loved Armadale Picture House, a favourite with Melbourne residents because it holds so many memories within its walls.
Rescued from a derelict state by the Board of Directors of Mossgreen this year, it has recently been renovated in spectacular style to house the growing concept of Mossgreen. The company now provides not only specialist single owner auction services in the world of art and design, but also showcases both traditional and contemporary art for both auction or private sale.
The Invitation Only opening held recently welcomed hundreds of guests, who flooded in the door and packed its portals to help the smiling trio of Directors celebrate the arrival of Mossgreen at Armadale in truly fabulous style.
The generous staircase entry foyer and adjacent spacious rooms had been lavishly decorated with the loveliness of lilac, while copious amounts of champagne flowed, ensuring that everyone was smiling.
Polished copper architraves surround the generous entrance doors, the restored stained glass above the front windows is glistening and the sensational dome that surmounts the building has been cleaned. Everywhere everything is illuminated by state of the art energy efficient lighting.
The ground floor is tiled in terrific terrazzo, with a simple Mossgreen m logo stylishly embedded at the entrance. The upper level has a heritage parquetry floor, which has now been carefully restored.
Directors Paul Sumner and Charles Leski will manage the all-new Mossgreen jointly. Together they have had vast experience in the world of auction houses, Sumner at Sotheby’s in both Australia and England and Charles Leski in Australia, where he has specialized in a diverse and interesting array of collectables for nearly three decades in Melbourne.
The Chairman of the Board and third Director Jack Gringlas, is the man who brokered the deal. He identified the opportunity to meld the successful operations of both the well-known Melbourne Leski auctions and the Mossgreen gallery and auction business together to create an all-new Mossgreen.
Jack was also delighted to accept the appointment of Chairman to assist in the merger and, from now on, to help steer the business forward into the future.
One of the great strengths of the business, as pointed out at the opening, was that every member of either businesses staff were also drawn together as one huge talented team that will be able to provide clients with the very best advice from a varied and wide-ranging expertise.
Educated in a heady soaring cathedral environment at Bristol, England Paul Sumner came to Australia as a young man for a decade or so, working at both Christies and Sotheby’s.
He then went back to England where he gathered invaluable experience as Managing Director of Sotheby’s London for over seven years.
Sumner has a wealth of experience, and since he established Mossgreen in an Art Deco building at Pott’s Point in Sydney, he has championed many Australian artists who contribute and challenge the very exciting Australian art market scene.
The growing list of artists Mossgreen now represents is very impressive.
Michael Johnson’s art works were in situ for the opening of Mossgreen because his show opens Saturday October 12th and runs until November 2nd.
His marvelous works certainly provided a colourful contemporary backdrop to the opening night celebrations. There was a great many people talking about, taking note and enjoying his amazing canvases.
Michael Johnson’s works are indeed impressive, a select group with some measuring more than two metres high.
They shimmer, glow, reflect and vibrate with life and energy. They are a fulcrum for their artist’s ideas.
His works are a contemporary fusion of fantastic colour, which comes together to form an energetic symphony of style.
They leave us with a lasting impression of painterly manoeuvres that require both dexterity and skill to perform.
Born in Sydney, Johnson originally studied in the 50’s at the renowned Julian Ashton Art School and lived in London for a period of time before moving to live and work in the United States.
Today he lives and works back in Sydney where his list of solo exhibitions is indeed impressive.
Johnson has won many awards and commissions and his works are held in all the major institutions in Australia including the National Gallery at Canberra, the Art Galleries of NSW, W.A. Victoria, regional galleries all over Australia as well as many University collections.
He is a master of abstraction, his jewel like works heralding the heavens above or the earth beneath, and he enjoys painting in pairs.
Day and night, north and south, east and west, male and female they are all about where the mood and the colour vibrations that emerge like great shock waves from his palette of colours take him.
Johnson seems to have no shortage of inspiration, which is gleaned from the world around him. Visitors to Mossgreen will be sure to take to his works.
Kate Bergin is an entirely different artist, for whom culinary and charm both collide.
Paul Sumner has been one of Kate Bergin’s champions now for quite some time as she captures the imagination and invokes an atmosphere of both joy and delight.
It is hard not to respond positively to her pathos, wit and humour as well as the very real pleasure she takes in producing highly entertaining works.
Bergin now has an impressive array of exhibitions behind her, as well as a mounting pile of awards and prizes and she is working hard on all the new paintings to be revealed in this new show at Mossgreen.
Australia is not an easy country to gain a reputation as an artist, while building a body of work with integrity that reflects your talent and diversity.
Kate Bergin won the Art Prize in 2010 for the City of Albany, ironically Kate Bergin’s work was called “Call of the Highly Improbable”, which was cleverly acquired by the city of Albany for its own Australian contemporary art collection.
Bergin’s current and most delightful images, feature the splendid range of exotic, and fabulous fauna that inhabits her world the world, which is indeed a wonderful and magical place that is always alive with possibilities.
Her new show at Mossgreen Gallery – Tabletop Performances and Other Balancing Acts, from 31st October – 20th November Sold Out quickly.
It attracted those who enjoy the simple pleasures of life and want to own great art, which should always inspire and excite us.
Melbourne is the town that embraces art on every level and celebrates the value of art, both monetarily and intrinsically. Mossgreen are helping to grow the social and cultural capital of Australian society. There is no doubt in my mind that the all-new Mossgreen has a great future ahead as it continues to chart a course in the heady world of art in Australia, with a great new base to do that from.
Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle 2013
12 October – 2 November, 2013
31st October – 20th November, 2013
Tuesday 15th October, 2013
Viewing & Auction Location:
926-930 High Street
Armadale, Victoria 3143
926-930 High Street,
Armadale, Victoria 3143
Departments include Chinese and Asian Art, Oceanic and Tribal Art, Australian and International art, Australian Indigenous Art, Antiques and Decorative Art, Sporting Memorabilia, Historical and General Memorabilia and Stamps, Coins and Postal History.
+61 (0) 3 9508 8888
Monday to Friday 9:00 am to 5:30 pm
Saturday Gallery 10 am to 4pm
The location is well known as Melbourne’s premier strip for art galleries and antiques