Ruth Lane-Poole – A woman of influence at Canberra Museum and Gallery

Photo of one of Ruth’s watercolours illustrating the range of her creative skills

I love the role of curators. This weekend saw the opening of an exhibition devoted to arguably Australia’s first career interior designer – Ruth Lane-Poole. The display is at CMAG because the biggest and most significant contributions she made to Canberra was to design the interiors of the two grand residences of the captial in the 1920s, Government House and the Lodge.

The curator, Margaret Betteridge has pulled together a gorgeous collection of related artefacts to tell the story of two significant buildings set in an era and intertwined with the story of a creative, courageous woman. Lane-Poole was emerging from a creative family to influence the visual elements of interior design in her generation and in many ways each decade since. Betteridge has told the complex tale effectively.

This show has lots of what I love in exhibitions. The artefacts range from a garland with fabric flowers used in Lane-Poole’s wedding through to a two metre carved timber table. The story is fascinating, the layout is easy to following and the intertwining of history with the personal lives of the participants is engaging.

The exhibition is on till Saturday 2nd October 2021

Details on website

Trees + Terry Martin, Zina Burloiu, Sue Cochrane, Malcolm Pettigrove @Bungendore Woodwork Gallery

Some artists create unique niches through their skills and creativity. The current exhibition at Bungendore Woodwork Gallery features four artists with a connection to trees – two work with trees as material and two with trees as subject

Terry Martin makes trees through carving wood in ways that utilise the grain and texture of the wood to its most creative beauty. His work also includes lots of bowls made with remarkable choices of varied coloured timbers and design.

Zina Burloiu creates functional objects out of wood. The design and artistic creativity woven into her work takes her objets to a higher plane. A simple spoon is turned into an object of striking beauty. There is a set of exquisitely crafted spinning tops some with colourful interlay.

Malcolm Pettigrove works in pen and ink. His tree based creations have been influenced by some Chinese ink drawing traditions. Like the Chinese ink traditions the drawings skate between reality and something that is an art creation. A tree with its roots out of the groundis an example.

Sue Cochrane is an artist with great sense of australian landscape and vegetation. Apparently her favourite area is the east and south Gippsland and its look is in the pictures.

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Luke Chiswell – As it goes @ Nishi Gallery

Skateboarding is a special world. Luke Chiswell turns that world into fun artworks. Skaters use boards, rails, curved timber, trucks or wheels to create a challenging fun world. Luke’s show includes unusual skate boards, trucks attached to timber and mirrors on the walls and challenging ramps due to location or composition.
This is a fun exhibition that even has fun street signposts about skateboard performance. I enjoyed this lots.










Inside the box – Aaron Garlick @ Canberra Contemporary Art Space Manuka

This is a fun exhibition. Aaron created a set of evenly shaped wooden blocks and has laid them out within some restrictions of working within a specific box space. He calculated the number of options and has laid out 45 permutations on the floor and their corresponding technical drawings on the wall around the room.
The reason I loved this so much was because of the explosion of ideas it set off in me. Some of the sets reminded me of childhood fun with blocks. I love town planning and his models evoked memories of city possibilities. I love options and this set of blocks could keep me going for years. The constraints of the box shape seem limitless until you think about what could be done outside the box.
I am tempted to buy 54 blocks and try out the possibilities.
Below is the gallery sheet and some pics of the exhibition






Crafted 14 @ Nishi Gallery New Acton

Furniture is a functional part of our lives and it also a vehicle for unending creativity and design that shapes every aspect of it. The students from the ANU School of Art Furniture Workshop have an exhibition of their work on at the Nishi Gallery at present. There are light fittings, chairs, sideboards, shelving and many other things made of timber.
People who work with wood seem interested in surfaces, construction and the variety of colour and texture available. This set is awash with rich variety available in timber in mody of the creations. I have included pics below to give a sense of the range.









Postgraduate Exhibition @ National Art School Darlinghurst

The exhibition space at the National Art School is wonderful. It is in a gorgeous sandstone ex cell block at the old Darlinghurst Gaol. It is well lit and is a great size. I went as part of the Sydney Open and was veryimpressed with the quality of the graduate art. I have attached several samples that I liked and there are a couple of websites at the bottom
Joe Wilson – Domain



Ebony Jennings – Glasshouse


Modulations – Peter Vandermark @ Canberra Contemporary Art Space Braddon

Industrial carpentry is primarily functional. Peter Vandermark has turned the materials and skills of industrial carpentry to produce visually arresting art. Some of it looks like air conditioning, tubing and lighting, There are pieces that look like architectural models and other constructions. The variety of materials and colours keeps the interest high. Below are some pics and the gallery sheet.








ANEW Boyandgirlco @ Nishi Gallery New Acton

Turning wood left overs into useful household objects is what this exhibitions is all about. Boyaandgirlco are a partnership that do interior design in houses and commercial facilities. Their style is to create wonderful useful and decorative objects four use in the house and commercial locations. I love this – it is so not IKEA. They put glass tops on some table because the finish of much of the wood they use is not table smooth but lots of the furniture is left with unfinished surfaces.
A delightful collaboration in the exhibition is with an artist going by the name “Bookie”. The artworks are created on plyboard and the colours are natural looking ans some look like they are burnt on. They are happy images and look so insync with the other creations in the space
Some links are below and some snaps.






Craig Eastern – Build @ Nancy Sever Gallery Kingston

The new exhibition at the Nancy Sever Gallery features the work of Craig Easton with the title Build. The works have a builders look about them. Timber off cuts, screws, test paint panels and a range of bits and pieces from building work. Some range from very large panels of bright lime green to a sheet of colourless perspex cut in ways that create shadows on the wall onto which it has been screwed. There is a sparsity of content to these works that I guess is deliberate.
Attached is the gallery sheet and some sample pics,











Home with wood – exhibition and sale @ Bungendore Woodworks Gallery

Often the gallery space at the Bungendore Woodworks Gallery is devoted to painting and photography of the natural world and other subjects. At present the gallery is home to a delightful set of household furniture – not ordinary furniture. These objects stretch design, wood and creativity to new lengths. Every object is a piece of master-craftsmanship. Small side tables compete for attention with beautiful standard lamps and a large dining suite and sideboard. It is all standard fare in this venue but it makes every item of furniture in my home look trivial.
Below are some pics and the flyer.