As a young man, gallery director W. Nevin Hurst’s interest in the arts was aroused by his grandfather who, as well as being Acting Surveyor General, took a keen interest in fine art, antiques and all things historical. Over 40 years ago, following a varied career in farming, mining, the newsprint and airline industries, Nevin began a career in the world of fine art and antiques, eventuating in opening the Masterpiece Fine Art Gallery for business in 1975.
During the late 1970s and 1980s, Masterpiece Fine Art Gallery held many exhibitions by well-known Australian artists, beginning with Desiderius Orban in 1979, followed by Judy Cassab, Eva Kubbos, Robert Dickerson and Lloyd Rees, plus many others, including local artists.
Nevin has also staged numerous solo exhibitions of his own work, initially at Hibiscus Gallery in Hobart, followed by Anima Gallery in Adelaide, Connely French Galleries in Evandale, The Terrace Gallery in Sydney and Masterpiece Fine Art Gallery in Hobart. He has also has considerable input into many scholarly publications, including books on Haughton Forrest, Arthur Streeton, Lloyd Rees, John Glover and many more.
Nevin is recognised as Tasmania’s most experienced Fine Art Valuer, with over thirty years’ experience in valuing for the government and local councils as well as many leading fine art collections. In 2006, a painting by John Olsen titled Love in the Kitchen – from the collection of Nevin and his wife Rose – brought a whopping $1.09 million, which was a world record price for a living Australian artist.