make your visit to Southern Highlands more rewarding, visit the Berrima district Museum.
see what our visitor's are saying about us on Trip advisor
what's going on at the Story Centre?
A Butcher, A Baker, A Bunch of Makers
A BUTCHER The Maugers Meats Story
John and Mat Mauger
Maugers Meats is an artisanal butcher with skills handed down three generations. John and Mat Mauger grow their grass fed beef and lamb on their family farm in Robertson and still serve customers the traditional way in butchers’ shops in Burrawang Village and Moss Vale. Mat advises on best cuts just as his grandfather Jo did nearly 50 years earlier. Now John and Matt proudly teach others about farm life and where food comes from on their Paddock to Plate Tours.
Dougal Muffet, Baker; Stephen Santucci Hd Chef; Phil Lavers, Owner/Farmer
Dougal Muffet gets up at 2.30am to start baking and is joined by a bunch of likeminded artisans who care about organic fresh grown produce and sharing food that is lovingly made by hand. The collective of artisans was started by Phil Lavers who turned his back on banking to start his sustainable farm and kitchen in the Highlands in 2006. Organic produce is grown fresh at the 140 acre farm in Wildes Meadow while Dougal and head chef Stephen share their magic at Moonacres Kitchen in Robertson. They even make the butter. Phil’s 12 years of hard work paid off when Moonacres won the Delicious award in 2018 for best produce in Australia.
Sculptor David Ball grew up in the bush and is still inspired by nature every day in his Southern Highlands studio. He painstakingly creates his monumental steel sculptures by hand and is passionately driven in his desire to ‘make’. David wants his work to command and relate to space in the round offering different experiences from all angles - structure and poetry in one. David’s work is in high demand following his Sculpture by the Sea at Bondi win in 2017. His masterful storytelling in steel has a growing army of loyal followers.
Sturt is Australia’s oldest craft centre and was established by visionary Winifred West in Mittagong in 1941. Winifred understood the link between hand and mind, and believed in the value of creativity, community and collaboration. Sturt is now a centre of excellence for the promotion and teaching of Australian contemporary craft and design attracting over 50,000 visitors a year to the Highlands.
Brooke grew up in the Highlands and embraced basketry techniques at an early age. She turned those skills, combined with a love for the outdoors, into contemporary expressions of that art form and now works from her studio at The SHAC in Robertson. Passionate about sustainability, her pieces are primarily constructed from found objects. Brooke collaborates with her husband Colin on larger projects and her work can be found everywhere from private homes to The Harbord Diggers Club and Canterbury RSL.
Originally from Western Australia, Tania has been making highly collectable ceramics for solo and group exhibitions in Australia and overseas in her Mittagong studio for the last decade. She studied design, then ceramics at the National Art School before doing a Masters of Fine Art In Drawing. Tania finds joy in the meditative nature of the process and her work brings together her interest in drawing and ceramics. Tania now teaches others about the beauty of clay at the National Art School and is currently making work for Cadence, a new exhibition coming to Sturt in Mittagong in August.
Leslie Fritz (14.3.11-11.12.06) was a pioneer of winemaking in the Southern Highlands and one of the first to see the potential of the region for making fine cool climate wine. Leslie was a winemaker in Transylvania before arriving in Australia in 1962 and establishing Hypercom that became one of the largest tech companies in Australia’s history. He set up Eling Forest Winery and Vineyards in Sutton Forest in 1987 planting many varieties of Hungarian grapes and crushing10 tonnes of fruit annually. Leslie’s revolutionary wine making techniques and vision put the Southern Highlands on the modern wine making map.
A FARMER Matt Kawalski Southern Highlands Farm Management
Matt moved from his farm in Crookwell to the Southern Highlands where he now manages multiple farms and helps clients make their land bountiful. The Southern Highlands is blessed with rich, fertile soil and high rainfall yet much of our farmland is unproductive. Matt and his team of contractors give advice about cropping, maintenance of weeds, care of livestock and help farmers utilise their treasured farmland.
Southern Highlands Farm Management is a proud sponsor of A Butcher, A Baker, A Bunch of Makers.
A TEXTILE ARTIST Natalie Miller
Natalie Miller is an internationally recognised textile artist known for her high impact woven artworks. After a career in design, architecture and textiles she now spends her time between the lush rolling hills of Kangaloon and Asia where she does textile retreats and workshops. Natalie enjoys the peaceful meditative process of using her hands in weaving and is teaching others about the joy of using their hands and mindfully creating something unique and beautiful.
Trevor fell in love with leather growing up around horses and saddle makers in the Byron Bay hinterland. Now in the Highands he sources the highest quality leathers he can find tanned the slow, traditional way with natural barks from dwindling tanneries all over the world. Trevor painstakingly hand cuts and stitches leather he hopes will last lifetimes with beautiful old tools gathered from his travels. Leathersmiths are becoming rare and as an artisan maker he enjoys the process of making and honing his skills in his Berrima workshop amidst the rich smell of leather.
Award winning painter James King works from his home studio in Mittagong and exhibits in Australia and Europe. An undercurrent of unease unites his subjects, many of them resurrected from discarded photographs from the mid twentieth century. James aims to celebrate forgotten life, forming a narrative with the subject while he’s painting them, sometimes on old books. James was first inspired in 2012 by Berrima District Museum’s World War One photographs of the German internees on Berrima River and he’s generously created this new series especially for this exhibition. James is represented by Becker Minty in Potts Point.
Heidi is a curious, experimental artist whose love of metal grew out of a practical need for repairs, farm work and gates. Heidi’s background in fashion design, fine arts and ceramics have all led to her joyful organic signature style. Heidi’s work often has an intimate connection with the natural environment and many of her projects explore questions of sustainability, recycling and renewable energy. Her garden gates and large steel sculptures made in her garden studio in Bowral adorn many Highlands gardens including National Trust’s Retford Park, Mona Farm Braidwood and Canberra Grammar School.
Originally from Melbourne, Ashley discovered his love of photography in his teens. At Prahran College of Arts he studied under such icons of Australian photography as Athol Shmith, Paul Cox and John Cato. During a 40 year career in commercial photography including awards such as Australian Photographer of the Year, Ashley moved to the Highlands where his focus turned to nature and the beauty of the landscape. Ashley has generously spent hundreds of hours capturing the beauty of his beloved Highlands and its talented residents for this exhibition.