Pokolbin (Cessnock)

ADFAS Pokolbin welcomes you.

ADFAS Pokolbin provides its members a yearly program of 8 illustrated arts-related lectures presented by skilled overseas and Australian experts plus excursions and outings in a friendly and sophisticated social setting. 

ADFAS Pokolbin provides funding for Young Arts to both Cessnock East & Cessnock West Public Schools. The schools we support both have ‘special needs’ students, including those with physical disabilities and autism spectrum. Both schools are classified as being in lower socioeconomic areas of Cessnock LGA.

We provide a Visual & Performing Arts Scholarship with the goal to encourage development of all forms of Fine Art in HSC studies including Painting, Sculpture, Music, Drama, Dance and Film, providing financial assistance to students in their final year of school enabling purchases of equipment or attendance at workshops related to their art. 


All lectures are held at Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, (CPAC) cnr. Vincent St and Aberdare Rd, Cessnock.

Evening lectures start promptly at 7:00 pm, please arrive from 6:15 pm. Lectures followed by supper and Hunter Valley wines.

Annual Membership – $180.00 for all 8 lectures.
Click here to join or email: members2@adfaspokolbin.org.au 

Guests welcome:
Visitors are welcome – $35.00 per lecture.
Visiting members of other ADFAS societies and students are FREE

For all enquiries please email: members2@adfaspokolbin.org.au 
Postal Address: PO Box 386 Cessnock NSW 2325
ABN: 50 525 651 526

Committee 2023
Chair: Lucy Griffiths  Ph: 0413 216 929
Secretary: Tracey Seath
Treasurer: Catriona Custance
Membership Secretary: Dearne Cameron.  Email: members2@adfaspokolbin.org.au


Monday 6 February 2023
Magnificent Top Ten
Presented by: Susannah Fullerton
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

There is so much to love about France – magnificent Paris, wine and food, French Style and superb art, and the glorious French countryside. France has more winners of the Nobel Prize for Literature than any other nation. Susannah will introduce us to larger-than-life writers, mistresses, lovers; and novelists who changed the face of the novel and its purpose.  Susannah introduces us to intriguing characters, memorable residences, and fictional creations. A lecture not to be missed!

Enjoy the wonderful world of literature with Susannah Fullerton. She is one of Sydney’s best-known literary historian and lecturer.  Susannah brings to life the lives and works of great writers in her fascinating and unique lectures. Susannah is great demand for her knowledge and personable presentation style and is Australia’s most requested leader of literary tours throughout the world.

Monday 6th March
The Etymology of the City of London
Presented by Alan Read
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

The English language is rich in idioms, phrases and sayings which are part of everyday speech yet seldom to we consider their original meanings. This is an exploration of historical etymology, often traceable to the City of London. Even if you have a ‘rob Peter to pay Paul’ and it’s ‘raining cats and dogs’ you would be ‘barking mad’ to miss this lecture.

Born in London and has acquired astonishing knowledge of his beautiful city. Alan has extensive knowledge of the art collections and architecture of London. We will enjoy a journey of deep appreciation of art and its history in an entertaining and informative way. Alan enjoys guiding people through art insights at Tate Modern, Tate Britain and the National Gallery at the Courtauld.

Monday 8 May 2023

The beginning and the end of the Renaissance
Presented by Leslie Primo
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

Rivalry, Emulation, Competition, and patronage. Raffaello di Giovanni Santi’s (1483-1520) legend would live on long after his death in the writings of Giorgio Vasari and many others. Raphael’s legend became synonymous with the very idea of the Renaissance. Leslie presents the most precocious and influential artists of the Renaissance, the intense rivalry and jealousy from artist, including Michelangelo. Leslie will share stories behind the intense political landscape of renaissance artists

Fine Arts Lecturer, Author and Broadcaster. Known for his ability to unlock the secrets of the art world. Experience insights that help decipher art jargon and survive in any art gallery in the world.  Leslie opens the world of art to us through his understanding of how we see the world of art.

Monday 5 June 2023
A brief history of debunking and desecrating public monuments
Presented by Geoffrey Edwards
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

The toppling and vandalising of prominent statues around the world has been an all-too-frequent news item in recent times. Citing the alleged moral failure or criminal culpability of the toppled subjects, the wrath of outraged crowds has focused on the grand sculptural representation of kings, presidents, dictators, and celebrated historical identities including Christopher Columbus, Captain James Cook, assorted Confederate generals, and Cecil Rhodes. But this is hardly a modern-day phenomenon. The problematic statue takes a look at the surprisingly long tradition of trashing public art in the interests of re-writing history.

Geoffrey Edwards was the Director of the Geelong Art Gallery. Prior to this appointment, he held Senior Curatorial positions at the National Gallery of Victoria where he was in charge of the collections of International and Australian sculpture and Melbourne’s celebrated holdings of ancient, antique, and modern glass. He is also the Senior Sculpture Curatorial Advisor for Point Leo Estate Sculpture Park.

Monday 3 July 2023
The Ultimate ‘Spin Doctor’
Presented by Jacqui Ansell
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

Had Henry not died in 1612, Charles I would never have been King. Had Van Dyck not arrived at Stuart Court with the stiff body language of Jacobean portraiture may never have been enlivened by the introduction of Renaissance values, giving rise to the splendor of Baroque. Van Dyck transformed the awkward and ungainly Charles to his depiction of sumptuous satins and shimmering silks, he was hailed as a careless romantic.

 Jacqui can be heard on numerous podcasts analysing works of art collections. Jacqui is highly respected as a teacher, mentor, and writer of study material in art history. She specialises in art and dress history, court dress, historical furniture, and fashion. Jacquie was also an informal advisor on the choice of objects for the exhibition at the Royal Collection on 18th-Century Dress.

Monday 7 August 2023
Festivals in Modern Mexico
Presented by Chloe Sayer
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

The Spanish Conquest of 1521 saw priests use theatrical representation as a method of instruction. Centuries later, ceremonies still draw on the pre-Christian beliefs and practices of ancient civilisations exhibited in many of the yearly festival cycles. The Mexican Fiesta – visually splendid, flamboyant processions, masked dances and elaborate costumes. Feel like you are part of the Fiesta as Chloe gives us insights into the costly preparations, the floral creations, the music, the incense, and the exuberant firework displays.

Author, lecturer, photographer, and curator, Chloe specialises in the art and culture of Mexico. She has made an ethnographic collection featuring clothing and culture for the British Museums of Mexico, Belize, and the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. The Mexican Day of the Dead was also a source of inspiration as co-curator of the ‘Exhibition of Mankind’ for the British Museum

Monday, September 4
A Painter of Northern Lights
Presented by Kathy McLauchlan
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

Peder Severin Krøyer, the Danish artist expressed his particular love for that time – “when the sun is going down, when the moon is rising over the sea, hanging there, crystal-clear, and the water, smooth as glass, reflects its light …” the ‘blue hour’ of northern Scandinavian summer nights, when sea and sky appear to merge into a single luminous whole. This lecture explores Krøyer’s life and work in Skagen and evaluates the paintings that made him one of Europe’s most celebrated artists by the end of the 19th century.

Kathy McLauchlan is a lecturer specialising in 19th-century art history. She is currently a course Director at the Victoria & Albert Museum and also a freelance lecturer who teaches at several institutions, including the Arts Society and Art Pursuits. She is a graduate of Oxford University and the Courtauld Institute, with a Ph.D. in French 19th-Century painters in Rome. She has published catalogues and articles for the British Council and the Barbican Art Gallery.​

Monday 9 October 2023
Not just a load of old stones
Presented by Dr Gillian Hovell
Venue & Time: Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, 7pm

This extremely popular virtual tour of the ancient Mediterranean explores the distinctive civilizations. Learning how they fit together into a “big picture”. Discover how to identify special art or architecture of each culture. Find out what to expect from each culture’s sites and how to find the special personal details that thrill archaeologists. You’ll never look at ancient sites in the same way again.

The Muddy Archaelogoist is seen and heard on BBC News and radio and is an award-winning writer, lover of Latin, ancient historian, and a prehistorian. Gillian is known for her lively, engaging talks that change the way people see the world around them. Gillian shows us how our modern lives are filled with stories and influences of the past.