Scraping back: the underexposed talent of JST

Castlemaine's Sue Turner with some of John S. Turner's scraperboard images, part of the new retrospective exhibition of his work opening weekends in December at Newstead Arts Hub. Photo: Eve Lamb

Newstead’s Old Railway Station Arts Hub is preparing to host a retrospective exhibition featuring works by the talented botanist and artist John S. Turner.
The arguably under-appreciated works of the late JST – as he signed off – will be on public exhibition every weekend in December from 10am to 4pm.
Castlemaine’s Sue and Peter Turner grew up knowing their father liked to relax by creating art.
But John Stewart Turner never called himself an artist – and only really exhibited once in his life.
Instead he was professor of the School Botany at the University of Melbourne and there he led the life of a successful academic until retiring at 65, later moving to Castlemaine with his wife, Kaye.
Throughout his life, the fact that JST had a significant creative talent was really only shared with others by virtue of the personal cards he bestowed at Christmas time, and the menu card artwork that graced annual dinners of his beloved walking group – Melbourne’s Wallaby Club.
“My brother and I grew up with this man who was a total academic but for relaxation he would do these amazing black and white images,” said Sue.
The significant ability JST had for depicting light, shade and reflection with rhythmic elegance was used to celebrate places he had been and loved, from Yandoit and Port Fairy to Paris. Read more in today’s Mail…

Eve Lamb
Journalist and photographer Eve Lamb has a Bachelor of Arts (Journalism) degree from Deakin University and a Master of Arts (Professional Writing) from Deakin University. She has worked for many regional newspapers including the Hamilton Spectator and the Warrnambool Standard, and has also worked for metro daily, The Hobart Mercury, and The Sunday Tasmanian. Eve has also contributed to various magazines including Australian Cyclist.