Postcard from Kutna Hora: rattle dat chandelier…

10 05 2008

 

Sammy Jo’s gone snap! on our little chandelier run, sending these charmingly cosy pics from the Sedlec Ossuary (Bone Chapel) at Kutna Hora (a short drive east of Prague.)

 

    Gawd, imagine the dusting…

                          

                              

                                     

 

Ginger reckons she’s going to redecorate her room. Over our dead body we said – which perhaps wasn’t the most judicious response…





Newtown’s taste of the wild…

9 05 2008

 

Far South Coast artists Joy Georgeson and Bill Insch (above) have just staged a successful two-man invasion of Sydney’s inner-urbs. Southern Oscillations opened last Friday night in Newtown – which Joy reports was a very far cry from the beauty and tranquillity of her beloved coastal bush!! Trés cool looking show…

 

             

                                          





Mental health initiative: get bloggin’…that’s our advice.

8 05 2008

To the uninitiated, blogging apparently seems a waste of time (to quote an oft aired, though to us totally incomprehensible, sentiment). The reality is that the bloggosphere is the richest source of infinite entertainment imaginable. Informative, helpful, and more often than not (most importantly) incredibly amusing. And a godsend for those of us who can’t get our jollies anymore from the drack offerings of mainstream, hardcopy journalism.

Recently the Gang was having a spot of techno trouble with the glasscentralcanberra site and called for help on the WordPress forum page (usually we harass poor Zoe, but don’t like to be too much of a nuisance…!) and were immediately given a (patient and helpful) hand by a total stranger.

Later, out of idle curiosity, we had a look at the blogger in question’s own site – and thank christ we did! What a funny bugger. Right down our alley. Everything from dirty martinis to the latest pet fad, LoveLice (yessiree, pet crabs are in!!) We thoroughly recommend a regular dose…http://raincoaster.com/

 





The exotic other…

8 05 2008

 

While we couldn’t make it to last night’s opening of Nicola Dickson’s show at the ANU School of Art’s Foyer Gallery, we haven’t missed out entirely – Nikki’s kindly treated us to a little taste…

 

 

                               

 

..and a pre-opening peek at the install…

 

       

 

Currently a candidate for PhD in the ANU School of Art’s Postgraduate Program, Nikki’s not long returned from a two week fieldwork trip to the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. We can’t wait to see what lusciousness evolves from that…

 

Meanwhile, for the intellectually curious, we’ve dropped in the artist statement below…

‘Other’ Visions 

The term exotic carries with it connotations of foreignness, excitement and an attractive strangeness. The exotic is not an inherent quality found in particular people, objects or places rather it is a particular form of perception that originated in the European mind when confronted with the ‘other’ Pacific or Australasian person, plant, animal, or artefact. Identification of the strange or unusual exotic ‘other’ is made by comparison to things and people that are usual and familiar.  The very strangeness and unfamiliarity of the ‘other’ becomes attractive and desirable.

The cultural lure of the exotic ‘other’ was, and is, a strange, paradoxical blend of the empirical and the fantastic.  This exhibition engages with how assumptions formed concerning the ‘other’ person or artefact from elsewhere were constructed and presented to 18th and 19th century European audiences.  This predominately occurred in the context the natural history museum.  In this period there was no distinction made between specimens of plants, animals, people or their material culture; all were considered revelatory of the diversity found in nature.  Artefacts from ‘elsewhere’ were presented as a fantastic jumble of ‘curiosities’. Factual information was interpreted and inevitably perceived through European conventions and desires.

 

 

 





All roads lead to Wagga Wagga…

7 05 2008

 

It’s going to be a biggie out at Wagga Wagga this coming Friday night; Chick and Brian’s show plus an exhibition of print+glass ‘duets’, Crossfire. (The latter plays on the curatorial premise of the selective pairing of prints and glass from the Wagga Wagga Art Gallery’s significant collections of both. Nice concept, wethinks.)

The Gang’s not making it over for the gala launch – we’ve drawn adolescent puppy minding duty while Pa and Ginger live it up in Old Melbourne Town (security-trainee Lola is still way too destructively immature for extended public outings.) But we will be high-tailing it across sometime in the coming month; Megsie’s been asked to do a piece on Intrinsic Elements, and the Gang’s keen to explore both the National Glass Collection and the extended facility. (We figure we’ll be able to spend some quality time and check it all out properly, sans the distraction of the social swill and flesh mesh. Not that we don’t enjoy a good opening, lord only knows, but we do like to focus on one or t’other frankly – we’re real Jerry Fords when it comes to that. )

To our continuing shame we have to admit that we haven’t made the National Glass Collection pilgrimage to date, a circumstance we’ve long felt the need to redress. (The only time we’ve been to Wagga Wagga was for Sammy Jo’s marching out parade at Kapooka which, to our horror and enduring disappointment, clashed with the ACDC concert in the ‘Berra – total bummer.) So we’re really looking forward to the visit.

One of Jock Puautjimi’s pukumani poles (cast with Luna Ryan) has been included in the Crossfire show, and Luna, who will be in attendance, has promised to take some snaps of the culture crush on the Gang’s behalf (…if her camera isn’t playing up!) With any luck we will yet be able to cobble together a bit of a fly-on-the-wall for your general delectation…

 





The statuesque chandelier…

6 05 2008

 

In view of our sudden spate of chandelier sightings, Nigel has drawn our attention to Ai WeiWei’s fantastic Tatlin-inspired chandelier (above), pictured in last Saturday’s Good Weekend. The SMH was promoting the exhibition Ai WeiWei: Under Construction, currently showing at the Campbelltown Arts Centre – though it’s a tad misleading because the ‘chandelier’ isn’t actually in the show at all, apparently. Never mind – we’re perfectly content to gaze at the picture, and the rest of the show looks great regardless.

Scope it out at…

http://www.campbelltown.nsw.gov.au/default.asp?iNavCatID=124&iSubCatID=2627)

 

 

Ai WeiWei, as it happens, runs a pretty sweet line in chandi-sculpture; the Watermall installation (above) was a serious standout at the APT5 at the QAG (Queensland Art Gallery) in 2006/7. [I can hear the elevator music from here…n(Ed)] 

Over at ArtWranglers, meanwhile, anticipation builds apropos Canberra’s new ‘gateway monument’. [We’re quite convinced that giant wiener would do the trick, Nige…]

For those wishing to observe the countdown, keep an eye on http://artwranglers.com.au/feel-a-monument-coming-on/.





Last Friday’s opening at the Bega Valley Regional Gallery…

5 05 2008

…Canberra-coastal connect.

(above) Tanja Riese, Banksia, Middle Lagoon.

The Gang bowled along to the latest offering at the Bega Regional Gallery and walked into a reunion of sorts with a veritable pack of erstwhile comrades. The current show, 25 x 25, is a touring exhibition featuring the work of 25 artists and celebrating the 25th anniversary of Canberra’s open access print studio Megalo. The old pals weren’t physically there, but their work was – which amounted to the same thing!! 

25 x 25  (conceived and curated by Megalo’s artistic manager Paul Peisley) has been doing the rounds of the regional galleries, from Broken Hill to Grafton, since 2005 and its arrival in Bega coincides with a complementary show by several local printmakers involved in the South Coast Solar Print Project. Indeed there’s a book-end exhibition, Sun Prints, concurrently running at the Spiral Gallery in Church St (both shows opened in concert on Friday night and will be up until the end of May.)

Well worth a squizz. Happy snaps at…

http://www.flickr.com/photos/glasscentralcanberra/sets/72157604887930918/

 





Restoring our sanity…

5 05 2008

 

We’ve not posted for a couple of days, simply because it’s been the weekend and Pa’s been down. Better to spend the time with him rather than hunched over the computer, we reckon. Art biz will resume directly…

Meanwhile, living back in the country continues to be wonderful – except for the matter of the TV reception. We haven’t been able to get the ABC – shock, horror! And in order to catch our fave Grand Designs (Thursday evenings, 6pm) we’ve had to resort to trudging down the pub for our weekly hour of architectural tipple. Which has been okay, but hardly ideal. The ersatz good cheer of the poker machines and the running, derisive commentary from the mountain men [last week they fastened like terriers onto Kev’s mention of the word ‘manor’…] does tend to take the shine off it a bit. Still, we’ve soldiered on – sometimes joined by Helen, sometimes by Ginger and Steph – and it is, as they say, better than nuthin’.

But now, hurrah, Pa’s been up on the roof, faffing with the antenna…and it appears that he may have restored the reception! We’re touching wood like crazy – so far so good. Historically (geographically)  this whole area suffers from signal trouble – no mobile phone coverage, scatty TV  – and while we’re not particularly fussed about the commercial stations, we do want the ABC. Fingers crossed…

Highlights from yesterday arvo’s artfest with Aunty (ie. those things we’re glad we didn’t miss!) would have to be (a) Darwin painter Rob Brown (what a cool dude) and (b) all that guff on Art Safari about Sophie Calle’s book having deep vaginal folds!!! (Those feminist art theorists have a lot to answer for…)





‘Other Visions’: Nicola Dickson…

3 05 2008

 

Nikki Dickson has an exhibition opening this coming Wednesday at the ANU School of Art Foyer Gallery. Get along if your in the ‘Berra – it only runs for two weeks, so don’t be tardy.

She’s top of the paint pops, in our books. Gorgeous stuff.





Mayday! Mayday! It’s 30 years today (officially) …

1 05 2008

…more if you count those two years living in sin.

 

               

Yeah, yeah – pretty daggy we know, but it was 1978.

Buon anniversario, Pa (you old spunk!)

(…we’re enduring the Canberra-Coastal divide as we speak.)