And then there was Melbs…

We’re trying to tidy the last of 2012 up before we launch into the new year. Melbs was wunnerful, as usual (on account of being furiously short and sweet) but pretty full on. And mainly, of course, it was the full Sicilian-o-rama, given that it was Nonna’s 102 birthday.

She’d had the formal 100th at the Ramacca Club, and then the 101st at Flinders, and so this year they decided to mix it up a bit and go village (as in have it in the garage like the good old days.) So how many Sicilians can you squeeze into a garage? 60 – we kid you not!!




It was a hoot. Even the pasta arrived in time-honoured village style…


bringing in the pasta

bringing in the pasta


And the odometer’s been turned over – Nonna’s back to only having to blow out two candles…


cake time


It was lovely. And incredible to see Carmella in such good nick; she’s quite amazing.


Sammy Jo, Nonna, Ginger and Sammy


Anyhoo, when we weren’t being Nonna-centric we did a dash around the old haunts, as you do…


drinkies with Chloe


Lunch at Young & Jackson’s now has the added attraction of police performance art; watching the coppers nab people for jay walking as they stream out of Flinders Street Station. Unbelievable. Three of them netting unsuspecting peeps at every light change, at around $75 a pop. They made an absolute killing in the time that we were there.


jay walking


It was very entertaining in a fascinatingly horrible sort of way.




Dear oh dear.

The only art that we caught was incidental and convenient, like the Blender Lane Studios (across the road from Granny’s)…


James Bonnici

James Bonnici at Blender Lane studios

James Bonnici's space at Blender

James Bonnici’s space at Blender


…and American artist Patrick Dougherty’s Stickwork at Fed Square (cos it was on our way to see Ian Mowbray’s new work at the Ian Potter)…




And that (the latter) was our dedicated cultural highlight for the trip; catching up with Ian and swinging through Containment: 2012 Cicely and Colin Rigg Contemporary Design Award (stunning show, on until late July 2013.) Ian’s continuing the Souvenirs of my family series begun for Tour de Force: in case of Emergency break glass. He’s made another ten for Containment (and has his sights set on 60 all up!!)  Too good.


Ian and Jacquie


Oh yes, and we took lots of snaps of macaroons for Dira (cos she’s into them at the moment, big time)…


for Dira

for Dira 2

crowning glory


And then it was all over in the blink of an eye. Sammy Jo flew back out on the Friday arvo, boo hoo, and we moseyed home for a restful change-over week at the BVRG (yes, we are being ironic…)

Happy days here.

Tour de Force: last stop…



The week before Xmas Megsie went to Darwin to give floortalks at the opening of Tour de Force: in case of emergency break glass at the Museum and Gallery of the Northern Territory. What a sad/happy trip it was, this being the finale of a project that started gestation in early 2008 (and initial chat even earlier.)

The peeps at MAGNT used the occasion to bring out their own collection of glass, which though not extensive is still pretty representational. This complementary exhibition, Handle With Care, laid a nicely weighted contextual intro to Tour de Force itself (even the juxtapositioning of titles fitted the philosophic bill.)


gallery 2


Loads of thanks to Exhibition Manager Nat for all her hard work and commitment and to all the staff at MAGNT who made the visit so easy and enjoyable. What a gorgeous outlook the gallery has for sunset openings – perfeck.

Loved Darwin (no hotter than Burma) – think we might have to go back.


laksa brekky at the Parap Market

laksa brekky at the Parap Market

g&t at the yacht club at sunset

g&t at the yacht club at sunset (oops, forgot to take The Poo)


Megsie’s tourist snappies here.

Picking up where we left off…

A continued conversation with proppaNOW

In July 2012 the BVRG showed proppaNOW, the artist-activist collective from Brisvegas, whose work we at the Hideout admire greatly. Of course during the time it took between original contact and the subsequent (successful) grant application to bring them down, the group had moved on somewhat from the work Megsie had in mind for the exhibition. Given the progressive nature of contemporary art practice, this is as one would expect –  especially from practices with strong socio-political leanings. And so by this year proppaNOW was running with The Black See, a no-holds barred look at racism in sport; aka systemic racism, period.

Anyhoo, realising that Bega just wasn’t ready for it, Megsie asked them with much regret to come up with something less ‘confronting’. Utterly shameful, we know – but proppaNOW were very gracious about it all and proposed existence resistence instead.

That underlying issue of censorship (albeit self-imposed) hasn’t sat at all well with Megsie (who is no shrinking violet as we know) and so she’s made the following piece, On reflection, in homage to the cause…


On reflection On reflection II

Megan Bottari, 'On reflection; in conversation with proppaNOW', found language

Megan Bottari, On reflection, found language


Word has it that proppaNOW will be exhibiting at Old Parliament House during Canberra’s centenary celebrations  next year. Omigod – soooo the perfect venue.

Bring it on.

ANU Patron’s Day/Grad Show 2012…

We’ll be careening all over the paddock for the next few posts – so you’ll have to ignore the absence of chronological order. December just got away from us in the end, too much happening, no time for the poor old bloggo, so we’ll do our best to make abbreviated amends.


Martin James, 'Notable quotables by Tony Abbot'

Martin James, ‘Notable quotables by Tony Abbott’


The Gang zig-zagged backwards and forwards to Canberra in the last week of November for the ANU School of Art EASS Patron’s Day (on the Wednesday) and the opening of the Grad Show 2012 (on the Friday.) Added excitement for the latter was that (1) Ginger was graduating (in Gold&Silver) and (2) Sammy Jo was flying in from Burma for the occasion (well, that and Nonna’s 102nd birthday the following week.)

Serious excitement mounted apace.

Anyhoo, have decided to roll both days pictorially into one – and it’s more about the peeps than the work itself. Though we did get one or two snaps before we launched into the serious business of assessing the 2012 form. As ever there was plenty to like…


Timothy Phillips, painting workshop

Timothy Phillips, painting workshop

Adele Rae Cameron, Gum Tree Tartan

Adele Rae Cameron, Gum Tree Tartan


The BVRG’s EASS recipient this year is painting graduate Erica Wrigley, whose zoological militalia was pretty hard to resist (sorry, stuffed up the pics – we’ll bring more fulsome coverage in the new year.) Erica will have an exhibition at the BVRG in Sept/Oct 2014 (alongside a complementary artist from shire.) We must say that – and by no means does this diminish Erica’s selection – Haeli Van Veen was seriously in the running again. Just fabulous, really – but as last year’s recipient, she’ll be showing (with eX de Medici) at the BVRG in Sept/Oct 2013…


Haeli with one of her critters

Haeli with one of her critters


Ginger and Maxie are both through to Honours, so we anticipate another year of creative agony/ecstasy.

Meanwhile it was, as ever, a very exciting conclusion to the graduand year, and not the least because it allows us some quality face time with the folks in the good-ole fank…mug shots here.

Maureen on fire…

Last Monday (on our way back from Darwin) we swung by Glass Art Gallery in Glebe for a brunch date with Maureen, who we’re pleased to report is firmly back in the saddle apropos her own studio practice and hot to trot on all manner of forward planning.  Fabulous.




And boy, is she making a splash…




Actually, we’d been meaning to catch up with her ever since Klausie came back from Sydney and told us how marvellous her new work was. And it’s wonderful to see her in full creative flow again after so many years spent dedicated to the support and promotion of others.




Plenty of serious wow factor, that’s for sure.

Maureen Cahill, 'Still thinking outside the square' - which pretty much sums it all up, eh.

Maureen Cahill, ‘Still thinking outside the square’ – which pretty much sums it all up, eh.


What a treat of a visit it turned out to be, we were almost exhausted by the breadth of her vision – which is just what one expects from Maureen, so all is well in the world we reckon!!

[Actually she’s a great inspiration and had us hankering for a bit of studio/workshop action ourselves…n(Ed)]

While we were there we naturally had a poke around the gallery and caught up with lots of serious eye candy…


Scott Chaseling at Glass Art Gallery, Glebe

Scott Chaseling at Glass Art Gallery, Glebe

Tevita Havea at Glass Art Gallery, Glebe

Tevita Havea at Glass Art Gallery, Glebe




What a wonderfully stimulating interlude it proved to be. Thanks Maureen – it did our spirit so much good.

Watch this space, it’s going to be an exciting ride.

Bega Art Prize 2012…

The gala opening was last week so you’ve missed the opportunity to press the flesh – but the show itself is up until the end of January, so plenty of time to catch it.


Bega Art Prize 2012 front

Bega Art Prize 2012 back


And the winner was a tie!! Shynyam Smith’s tapestry White Peppermints on the Murrah…


Shunyam Smith, Three Peppermints on the Murrah, tapestry


…and Chris Denton’s intaglio print The Philosopher’s Box #3…


Chris Denton, The Philosopher's Box # 3


Beautiful works both. Professor David Williams had the unenviable task of judging this year’s event (the categories being Printmedia and Contemporary Craft and Design) but, as one would anticipate, he pulled it off with his customary grace.


official party with Shuny's piece


The official party (above) Mayor Bill Taylor, Shunyam Smith, Chris Denton and Professor David Williams with Shuny’s piece. And again, below, with Chris’s piece […we run an equal opp policy here, folks. n(Ed)]


Mayor, Chris Denton, Shunyam Smith and Professor David Williams

Bill, David and Anne

Bill, David and Anne



Tony and Chris

Tony and Chris

announcement time

BAP gallery

Bega Art Prize 2012


A thoroughly enjoyable night was had by all, despite the utter confusion of holding the opening on a Thursday night(!)