Snap Scene: Maton Guitar Exhibition, Powerhouse Museum, Ultimo NSW, 3rd August 2020

Maton: Australia’s Guitar is the largest retrospective of Australia’s leading guitar manufacturer. In this major survey, over 130 guitars will traverse the history of Maton, drawing on more than 70 years of music.

Explore the company’s beginning, its first models and influence on the music scene transcending through genres such as Country and Western, Folk and Classical, Rock and Roll, and Jazz.

Melbourne-born jazz musician, woodwork teacher and luthier Bill May founded Maton in 1946 and became a pioneer of Australian guitar manufacturing. Starting in a small workshop in May’s garage, Maton became a success against the odds, and has since created over 200 guitar models.

A highlight on display from the Powerhouse’s collection is The Easybeats’ guitarist Harry Vanda’s Maton guitar which he used to write the song ‘Friday on My Mind’. Also on display is Tommy Emmanuel’s first Maton, a Maton electric Mastersound MS500M and hand painted case; the first Maton guitar Bill May made; some of the rarest Australian guitars ever displayed, and instruments and amplifiers used in the heyday of Australian jazz, folk, rock and country.

You can view custom-made models for Australian music icons such as Tommy Emmanuel and Diesel, and see why the Maton guitar is the instrument of choice by local and international artists alike, including Archie Roach, Missy Higgins, Keith Urban, Tash Sultana, Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age), Garry Beers (INXS), George Harrison (The Beatles) and Keith Richards (The Rolling Stones). This stunning and thorough collection of Maton guitars, ukuleles, lap steels and amplifiers are part of the personal collection of Bankstown-based instrument collector Wadih Hanna.

It’s on now until 11 October 2020 at the Powerhouse Museum, Ultimo. The exhibition is free, but you must book tickets.

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