Milk factory gallery @ Bowral

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We went to Sutton Forest for a family Christmas get together. Taking advantage of that location I finally was able to visit and spend an hour in the amazing Milk Factory Gallery.  Wow is it a treat to walk through. They obviously represent lots of artists and so there is a huge range of styles on the walls and on pedestals. The exhibition spaces are all timber on several levels interconnected though various staircases illuminated with lots of natural light.

Some of the artists we are familiar with through other exhibitions. but there were lots of fascinating works and artists that were new to me In talking to the store manager about it all she made me aware of their website and it is gold. It has pictures of the gallery spaces and best of all it has active links for maybe 50 artists that take you to abundant representative images.

It seems pointless with access to all the images on the website to put many here but I just had to put this one on as we visited on Christmas Eve.

Their website is below

 

 

 

http://www.milkfactorygallery.com.au

Gold and the Incas – Lost worlds of Peru @ National Gallery of Australia

I have been home for two hours and I am still not breathing normally.. My wife and I just spend 150 minutes in the truly awe inspiring current exhibition at the National Gallery of Australia Gold and the Incas – Lost worlds of Peru. The sumptuous beauty and creativity of this set of objects is hard to explain. I love the creators choice to paint the whole gallery space black, reduce the lighting to a minimum and create glass lit boxes to focus on the stunning nature of the objects.

I love history and this exhibition tracks a set of related cultures in Peru from about 1500 BCE to the arrival of the Spanish in the 1500s CE. The curators have brought together representative examples from more than a dozen cultures through the period. The objects are made of a vast array of materials from cotton and wool to gold and silver. The objects are mainly connected with death but there are lots of beautiful items of clothing and of a domestic nature.

We took a highly informative guided tour for an hour or so and learned lots of the historical context of the various objects and then spent the next hour or so drooling over more gold than I have seen in a decade. The NGA has embraced the idea of giving the paying customers a delightful 20 page A5 handout packed full of great background information and ways to extend our learning. I am now getting stuck into following up on line the amazing learning done in the gallery today.

I would encourage anyone to go to see this it is quite striking exhibition

I have included a few internet images to give ou a sense of it.

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Inca face mask

Trent Parke and the Christmas tree bucket photos @ National Gallery of Australia

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I love the Photospace gallery at the National Gallery. Right now there is a set of pictures on show titled something like Trent Parke’s Christmas bucket list photos. They are what they say they are – family type pics around people at Christmas. There are gifts, and sunburn, animals snarling and children playing, gifts and decorations. Some shots are very funny and others are alarming and macabre.I have included an image from Google images to give you a sense of the set. There is a huge number of Trent Parke’s images on line .

If you are queuing up for the Inca Gold exhibition and you can get some one to hold your place in the line it is really worth a look. This was a surprise for me in its narrowness and mundanity.. Many of the delightful shows in this space are more lofty or have a wider focus so this indicates an openness in the curators.

The NGA page for this is below and there are heaps of the images accessible through that page.

http://artsearch.nga.gov.au/Detail.cfm?IRN=245660&PICTAUS=TRUE

Messengers’ kangaroos @ Tuggerenong Arts Centre

There was a delightful exhibition on at the Tuggerenong Arts Centre recently by the arts group Messengers. The exhibition itself was delightful but a work that particularly took my interest was a set of Kangaroos and other native animals in the foyer. I have attached a set of pics t give you the sense of them but in the space in big size it was a fun piece of creative use of different materials.

 

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Sidney Nolan – Remembrances of my youth @ Canberra Museum and Gallery

On every criteria I see better craftsmanship and creativity every day on the fences in my suburb than these outings from Sidney Nolan on display at the Canberra Museum and Gallery (CMAG). The exhibition titled Sidney Nolan Remembrances of my youth is a set of say a dozen works done with spray cans on fairly large canvasses. It could be that this was it seems his experiments in the art and that some of the taggers today are highly skilled and work in a very highly developed and competitive field.
The thing I am most grateful for CMAG in putting this on s the expanded sense of Nolan’s work it gives. I walked through this surprised that he had used this medium in his career. The stylistic elements of his approach were there and the means of expressing them were different.
When I checked the CMAG website this morning this exhibition did not have a page so I have attached a few pics to give you a sense of it.DSCF6278

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Behind the lines 2013 @ Museum of Australian Democracy

Political cartooning is a delightful art form. I am a regular reader of newspapers and always try to get the cartoon. I think the beat part of the Insiders program on ABC TV is the segment when they trawl trough the cartoons. So every year I go to and usually buy the book of the annual exhibition of the best of Australian political cartoons that is held now at the Museum of Australian Democracy.
This year is excellent. 2013 was politically charged and involved. Cartoonists had lots of intense issues and people to work with and so the cartoons are rich, provocative and artistically delightful. I enjoy standing absorbing the big format cartoons out of the context of the ferment which generated them. You can see some of the cartoons on line at the site below and I have included one of my favorites below.

http://behindthelines.moadoph.gov.au/2013

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Steve Holland – Being @ Canberra Museum and Gallery

I love the glassed in gallery at CMAG that faces the square. They put some great stuff in there. Right now there is a work titled Being by Steve Holland. I love it – It is composed of curtains made up of sheets of broadsheet newspaper.that have delightful gum leaf holes cut in them. The colours of the floor to ceiling newspapers penetrated by the holes of the leaves are truly beautiful. Th floor is scatted with the cut out leaves and there are several brass brown snakes in the leaf litter. My words do not do it justice. The pics below are meant to be a taste to encourage you to go and see it

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College Express 5 @ Belconnen Arts Centre

There are some very talented students in art programs in years 11 and 12 in ACT schools. The current exhibition at the Belconnen Arts Centre features the work of students in eight private or public schools in the northern suburbs of Canberra.

I loved it. The range was wide with pottery, textiles, video, painting, sketches and other styles in the mix. A few signs indicated that some works were for sale but the gallery sheet only listed eight of the 113 works had a price on them

I have attached a few pics and blurbs from Taylor Eagleton and Hannah Lee from Burgman and Ingrid Hunter from Radford that took my interest but there were heaps of other great works.

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Small Works @ Beaver Galleries

For people who like buying art as gifts at Christmas time theists.  current show at the Beaver Galleries is a gold mine. All the galleries and a room that is not usually open are decked out with a large collection of small works from what must be over 50 different artists. There are ceramics, glass, paintings, works on paper and sculpture.  It is a diverse collection and the curators have kept it mainly focused on small works.

There was a review by Kerry Anne Cousins in the Canberra Times on Saturday December 14 2013.

The artist’s diary: Portraits by Judy Cassab @ Portrait Gallery

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The small entry gallery at the Portrait Gallery has about 10 works by Judy Cassab on display right now. It is always great to have an idea about the artists whose work you see often. I used to be a big patron of St Mark’s Theological Library and there was a painting of Burgman in the foyer. It is a Cassab in the exhibition. I had no idea who had done it. The portrait Gallery has had a pipe holding youthful picture of Sir Frank Packer on display for a long time. Those are two of the small sample on display.

The gallery sheets that are available give a great sense of an artist with a passion to excel in portraiture and her practice over many decades of production.

THe National Portrait Gallery page for the exhibition
http://www.portrait.gov.au/site/exhibition_subsite_cassab.php