Overlooking the shores of Lake Macquarie, the Museum of Art and Culture (MAC), is the premier art destination for the region. We’ve visited Lake Macquarie many times and had overlooked this award-winning gallery in a stellar location until our latest trip. We had a lovely visit and found it to be a family-friendly and wheelchair accessible attraction which we put on the must-visit list for Lake Macquarie.
MUSEUM OF ART AND CULTURE – MAC – ACCESSIBLE LAKE MACQUARIE
Art isn’t always accessible to the masses. And when I say accessible, I don’t mean physically so, I refer to the content. An exhibition may be something adults will enjoy but teens or children may not. The current exhibition at Museum of Art and Culture is “Reconnected – A Recovery Story”, taps into something we’ve all experienced, isolation and emerging from the unprecedented conditions we’ve all faced thanks to the current pandemic. The MAC set about presenting this exhibition of hope and recovery and we loved it.
Local artists were invited to reflect on recovery and a positive way forward and in doing so have united the region with an exhibition showcasing the many ways people have dealt with the pandemic and the resulting isolation.
The aim of the Museum of Art & Culture exhibition is to “reconnect artists and the community directly, in the physical sense, beyond the digital and distanced world they’ve inhabited over the past months.
The art is exhibited in a large space which is easy for wheelchair users and also provides the ability to socially distance while enjoying the artworks.
I found it fascinating to read about, and see art representing, how others found isolation. It’s interesting to see how they used their time to explore their home towns, and to see how they’ve used art express those experiences.
A mix of mediums has been used, including painting, sculpture, photography, video and installation, with the exhibition looking on the more positive side of life. I found it a wonderful reminder of how we are all connected in this challenging time, even if we deal with it differently.
Most of the artworks in this show are for sale, offering the community a chance to support local artists.
MUSEUM OF ART & CULTURE WORKSHOPS
When we were invited to take part in an art workshop I was a little concerned. I did a landscape painting class in the US last year and the result ended up in my hotel bin. I think even the teacher felt my efforts were beyond her help. I was more successful doing a dot art workshop at Uluru so I thought I’d give the MAC workshop a go.
Hubby and BJ produced the best outcome but we all had fun and I highly recommend it as a school holiday activity for families looking for an accessible indoor activity.
We were tasked with drawing flowers on foam, then using paint loaded rollers we covered them in paint ready for stamping it on to paper. I’m sure there is a much more artistic way of describing the process but hopefully you get the idea.
I’ve mentioned many times BJ has never been a huge fan of art and craft, despite my encouragement, but he really enjoyed this. Aside from the drawing part of the workshop, he could participate and liked the results.
The MAC Cafe takes advantage of the museum’s location with seating overlooking beautiful Lake Macquarie. Indoor seating is available if you prefer.
BJ and AJ had toasties for lunch but that didn’t stop BJ from living up to the ‘plough’ in a ploughman’s platter. He managed to eat his lunch and make a fair dent in the platter Hubby and I were trying to share. He is passionate about his cheese and he got through more of our lunch than we intended to share!
He followed that up with a scone chaser. The cafe couldn’t have catered better to our scone-loving, cheese-munching guy. BJ gives the cafe a big thumbs up for the menu and accessibility. I also give it a vote for the views of Lake Macquarie and friendly staff.
ACCESSIBLE BATHROOM FACILITIES
A unisex stand-alone accessible bathroom facility is available within the gallery.
The Museum of Art & Culture gift shop has a range of good quality art inspired gifts and souvenirs to peruse, or in my case, buy.
An outdoor sculpture garden sits in front of the museum. Access looked to be across the grass lawn and we’d run out of time so we skipped it. Families seemed to be enjoying picnicking in the gardens while taking in the water views.
Admission to the Museum of Art & Culture is amazingly free.
Accessible parking is available close to the museum entrance. Two accessible spaces are available here. Ramp access leads to the entrance and level access is available throughout the museum.
We were hosted for the delicious lunch but we can assure you BJ’s enthusiasm and our happy tummies are a guarantee the Museum of Art & Culture’s cafe is worth a visit.