Close up of components of “Just Passing Through”, - “Gum Blossoms”, “In the Distance”, “Wattle”, and “Leaf”
I am finishing up my latest group of paintings, and am deciding whether to paint the sides black as I normally do, or a color that I have used in the painting, probably a red oxide color. This is an interesting article discussing the options.
I’m still not sure what I’m going to do!
I follow the Archibald Prize every year. This year’s winner is Artist Del Kathryn Barton, whose portrait of Hugo Weaving (who i loved in the Matrix, the Priscilla movie, and of course the Lord of the Rings to name a few) is a reflection of her style, which includes line drawing, and adds other aspects of Hugo’s character and interests.
There is a great 3 minute video clip of her acceptance of the Award, where she talks about how her discussions with Hugo changed her ideas for the content of this painting.
The Archibald is an annual competition open to Australian residents, for portraiture, preferably of a public figure. It always generates a diversity of work, often controversial, around the nature of portraiture.
Is a good portrait a realistic likeness of a person, or should it reflect their character and personality? Does a portrait need to physically resemble the person at all?
I am excited to be starting on a new series of paintings based on a trip with my friend Sue to the Cranbourne Botanical Gardens in Melbourne last year. Here are a couple of sketches I have drawn to form the basis for the design and colors of my paintings.
Here is the link to the gardens website -
We had a lovely day walking the gardens- great diversity in plants, modern sculptures, and water views. We finished the day with scones, jam and cream at their cafe! They were about to open a new section - will have to go back again this year.
I visited the MCFTA’s latest exhibition which closes April 14th, and the work that drew me most was the Video Art of Korean artist - Lee Nam Lee’s - in particular the piece where he has reproduced Van Gogh’s self portrait with bandaged ear, located in a museum, and as you watch the screen ants carry portions away from the museum and reassemble it somewhere else, presumably where more people can see it.
If you click on the title link you will find a vimeo interview of Lee-Nam Lee explaining his work. If you just want to see the piece I am talking about, start at minute 2.
This piece got me thinking that even though art is much more accessible today through on-line access to images and information, to actually see a painting, understand its texture and mood and to really feel it - you need to go to a museum or wherever it is physically located.
I started sketching again last week, some hydrangeas in a pot caught my eye. The first sketch was more realistic, then the second more abstracted.
I saw this show recently and found it to be thought provoking. It’s open until March 17th. The Bass Museum’s mission is to explore the connections between historical collections and contemporary art.
Hans-Peter Feldmann’s work challenges the pretentiousness of the art world, and in this show he does this by altering found formal, realistic portraits and over painting adjustments such as a clown’s nose or crossed eyes. The dark portraits, lit overhead looked a bit washed out in the bright contemporary space. The docent told me they looked more effective with the main lights out and lit only by the overhead picture lights, and promptly turned off the main lights to show me! ( it was a quiet day at the gallery)
Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook took a Manet to a Thai Village, and I watched an English sub-titled Video of farmers and villagers sitting in the middle of a rice paddy, looking at the work and talking about it. It was fascinating to watch them discuss the painting, trying to make sense of it in their context, trying to find things in common. At one stage they even talked about whether the painting could be of a rice field!