Amongst the good food, nightlife and excitement that revolves around Yarraville Village is a unique place to drink wine and get creative.
“Pinot & Picasso is Australia’s number one paint and sip experience. That basically means we’re like a fun adult art class with a boozy twist,” laughs studio manager Rubyanna Edwards.
Rubyanna started as an art host in Pinot & Picasso South Yarra, teaching classes while studying fine arts. In 2022 she moved to manage the Yarraville studio and while practising as an abstract digital and multimedia artist at the same time.
For her, it’s the laid-back vibe that makes this particular Pinot & Picasso so special. “I think our customers make our business really unique,” she says. “The locals bring our sessions alive and make the magic happen – and our job is to facilitate a really good time.”
Whether you’re hosting a hens day, birthday party, work event or just looking for a creative date night, Pinot & Picasso runs sessions to suit any budding painter. If you feel that you’re not particularly artistic, don’t worry. Most of their sessions are designed for beginners and more often than not visitors who have never before put brush to canvas.
All art supplies are provided and you just have to bring your own food and drinks. Public sessions run on weekends, with the studio open for private sessions during the week.
Their most popular class is ‘Paint Your Pet’. “It’s one of my favourite classes because it’s more intuitive, rather than a set painting. Before the class people send us pictures of their pets and we sketch an outline. From there we help everyone to bring their pets alive on canvas,” smiles Rubyanna. “It’s adorable. Because obviously people really love their pets.”
Aside from ‘Paint Your Pets’, Rubyanna’s favourite class to teach is ‘Picasso Paints Frida’. “It’s a painting of Frida Kahlo that incorporates that classic, cubist-like Picasso style that makes it a bit edgy,” she says, gesturing to the colourful portraits on display in the store. “Each person’s work comes out differently every single time. It’s amazing.”
What Rubyanna loves most about her job is being creative every day and re-introducing adults to art. “I get to work with something that I really value that’s close to my heart,” she explains.
“I just love seeing the transformation of people who enter the store saying they’ve never done any painting before or that they’re not creative…and then leaving the class so proud of what they’ve made, while having a lot of fun.”
Looking to the future, Pinot & Picasso have much in store for Yarraville. “We have just released a new set of around-the-world artworks, which I think will be a big hit as international travel is still a bit difficult post-COVID. Plus we’re really keen to host more family-friendly sessions.”
“We’re here to encourage people to explore art in a really accessible way – we want them to feel comfortable and have a fun experience making art with us. For me personally, it’s an awesome feeling to be able to get people into a creative mindset and see them be so happy and excited when they leave our studio.”