Why this is something you should add to your Weekend TO DO list…


It’s pretty simple really. If you go along to the Cambridge Studio Gallery in Collingwood anytime between now and June 1st, you’ll be a winner in more ways than one.

(1) You’ll get to see a brilliant art exhibition by famed painter OTTO BORON. 

(2) Your visit is very likely to help the BUILD FOUNDATION in their mission to help underprivileged children in Cambodia.

(3) You may possibly BUY a piece of art that will be a wonderful investment – and if you can’t afford one, then a raffle ticket for just $10 may end up sending a masterpiece your way.

I was asked along on Wednesday night to officially ‘open’ the ART FROM THE HEART Exhibition. Set in the light and airy Cambridge Studio Gallery, I was mighty impressed by Otto Boron’s collection. It’s easy to see why his work has been highly acclaimed over the years, winning many awards including Otto being named Victorian Artist of the Year, twice.

Cambridge Studio Gallery

Cambridge Studio Gallery

Kanyaka Ruins - $1300

Kanyaka Ruins – $1300

This exhibition is bold and expressionistic; a combination of images ranging from portraits of children in Cambodia, to derelict, deconstructed buildings abandoned in Australian rural landscapes.

I think you can see a touch of Cezanne, Picasso and even Fred Williams influences in some of these pieces and I truly believe they will make for a great investment, because they are so modestly priced.



Termite Landscape, Northern Territory - $3500

Termite Landscape, Northern Territory – $3500


Territorial Geese - $3500

Territorial Geese – $3500

Reflection - $3500

Reflection – $3500

Children of Cambodia - $4500

Children of Cambodia – $4500

Rice Carrier - $1200

Rice Carrier – $1200

Robert Lee, President of the Contemporary Art Society of Victoria spoke on the night, highlighting Otto’s achievements and explaining how Otto’s work, with its strong textures and images, presents an often-poignant view of the world.

I was delighted to meet with Otto on the night and learn we had a couple of things in common. One – we’ve both worked in TV. Otto was in fact head scenic artist at the ABC for twenty years. Two – like Otto, I also prefer working with oils when I paint. And he gave me a couple of great tips about texture too. (This will only interest any aspiring artists out there – but if you like working with a palette knife, Otto says he has a better idea. He buys firm but flexible plastic strips from Bunnings – in the paint section of the store – to get thicker strokes. I’m heading there tomorrow.)

Robert Lee, Otto Boron and me

Robert Lee, Otto Boron and me

He might be into his seventies, but this Italian-born painter (Otto migrated here in 1959) is still as productive as ever. He says his ability to paint quickly comes from the pressures of working in the TV industry. Ah ha! I get that…

Not only exceptionally talented, he’s also a generous soul. Fifty per cent of all works sold will go to the BUILD FOUNDATION, helping disadvantaged children in Cambodia.

Otto’s daughter, Tania, is part of the BUILD FOUNDATION which began five years ago. Headed by Mark O’Connell, it started out sending volunteers on trips to Cambodia and is now involved in a five-year-project, which is halfway to completion. The project involves the building of a Community Development Centre, which includes a medical centre, classrooms, vocational training building, a library and agricultural areas.

Tania Boron and Mark O'Connell from the Build Foundation

Tania Boron and Mark O’Connell from the Build Foundation

What’s really impressive is how much BUILD has been able to achieve – funding all this through its own fund-raising efforts. Congratulations guys, for doing such an outstanding job – changing the lives of so many people for the better!

And congratulations to Otto Boron and the Cambridge Studio Gallery for putting together such an inspiring exhibition.

Now, here’s the artwork you could win if you buy a raffle ticket before June 1st. So for a mere TEN DOLLARS you could win this painting, worth $1600!!! Get along to the gallery and put your hand in your packet for a worthy cause.

'Rundown Farm Shed', the painting in the raffle, worth $1600

‘Rundown Farm Shed’, the painting in the raffle, worth $1600

Cambridge Studio Gallery
52 Cambridge St
Collingwood Victoria 3066 Australia
Hours of operation:
Wednesday – Saturday
11:00am – 5:00pm
(03) 9486 0169