“He was my beloved partner for 26 years and I’m very sad that on this very joyous occasion he’s unable to share in this.”
The pair were announced in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List on June 11, recognised for their service to the visual arts, and to education.
“They’d given me a bit of warning and asked me if I’d like to accept it, as well as on behalf of Robin,” said Jocelyn.
“I wrote back and said I would be delighted. They wrote an official letter to say the nomination was successful and congratulations to both.
“It’s tremendous and something I don’t take lightly. Our life is dedicated to the arts and philanthropy of the arts.”
That philanthropy is something she continues.
Robin died quite suddenly in January 2017.
Jocelyn said they had a wonderful life together and Robin’s life was very much attached to Taree. “I still have a great fondness for Taree.”
Jocelyn and Robin were partners, artists and former teachers.
Robin grew up in the Manning and attended Taree Public School and Taree High School. He was a resident of Black Head and had a studio at Patonga.
His father Horrie Norling and uncle Carl Norling had a poultry farm along the Wingham Road in the years following WW11
“Robin had a wonderful career as an artist and art educator and in the year before his sudden death he had a major exhibition at the Manning Regional Art Gallery,” said Jocelyn.
Robin’s citation included his role as co-owner/director of Bakehouse Gallery between 2000-2017 and his work as an artist between 1960 and 2017.
He is a fellow of the Royal Art Society of New South Wales, and a former member of the Australian Watercolour Institute, for which he took on the role of president for three years.
He taught painting and drawing at the Meadowbank College School of Art (now the Sydney Gallery School) between 1986 and 2000, was a senior education officer at the Art Gallery of New South Wales between 1978 and 1986, and lecturer and former head of art education at Alexander Mackie Teachers College between 1970 and 1977.
He was also a part-time writer and presenter of the ‘Young World of Art’ program, ABC Radio between 1970 and 1973.
Awards and recognition includes being a recipient of the New South Wales Travelling Art Prize, New South Wales Government in 1962 and the Robert Le Gay Brereton Memorial Drawing Prize, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 1960s and Sir John Sulman Prize, 1961.
Jocelyn has been co-owner and director of Bakehouse Gallery, since 2000 and an artist since 1960.
She is a patron of the Central Coast Watercolour Society and a fellow of the Royal Art Society of New South Wales.
She has been a member of the Australian Watercolour Institute since 1983, was a committee member for eight years and treasurer between 2003 and 2006.
She was a teacher between 1966 and 1995 and former senior head teacher in art and design at Meadowbank TAFE (now the Sydney Gallery School).
Her awards and recognition includes being a recipient of the Kedumba Drawing Award, Orange Regional Gallery in 2011, the Margaret Fesq Prize for Portraiture, Royal Art Society of New South Wales in 1983, the Portia Geach Prize for Portrait Painting in 1976 and the Robert Le Gay Brereton Memorial Drawing Prize in 1957.
Her most recent exhibition at the Manning Regional Art Gallery was held during February and March 2018.