Being a major exhibitor at the 1990 Adelaide Festival of Arts was a triumph for Melbourne sculptor Robert Matheson.
The festival, which began in 1960, is a biannual world-famous event. Art in all its forms - dance, drama, music and other media - is exhibited by professionals from around the globe.Matheson, elders quorum president in the Sunbury Branch of the Adelaide Australia Deer Park Stake, has spent many years pursuing his love of art.
He began as an opal cutter when he left school at age 15. Although not feeling fulfilled in his search for an art medium, that job provided him with the necessary funds to serve as a full-time missionary in the Guatemala El Salvador Mission from 1971-73.
On returning from his mission, he began painting in oils. He followed this medium for some 15 years, but still was not happy with his artistic endeavors. Somewhere during those years, he began to experiment with the possibility of sculpting and discovered this was what he had been looking for.
Today his intricate sculptures of Australian animals in native settings have achieved national and international acclaim.
He has done commissioned work for collectors in Europe, Britain and the United States. He has had his work exhibited in numerous galleries and festivals in Victoria, Australia. Galleries in Sydney, Canberra and Mount Eliza have all been hosts to Matheson's works of arts.
During the Adelaide Festival of Arts, this elders quorum president's work was displayed, coincidentally, in the Elder Fine Art Gallery.