Hi all. Today I am going to inundate you with many pictures of art because I just want to. There have been a few exhibitions I’ve been to recently around town and as has happened all too often, many of these exhibitions have finished but for those who can’t always get to the galleries here is a snapshot from the past couple of weeks. I’ll begin with those exhibitions that are still open. Cheers!
I’m in the market for a new piece of art. Shh don’t tell the family. My house is cluttered with art though mainly my own. So it doesn’t count really. Anyway I like the idea of having a collection of works by local artists. So on Saturday when I read in the Newcastle Herald that there was an exhibition for a charity at Newcastle Grammar School it gave me the inspiration to trek into the big smoke and take a peek. Nexus Art Show is an annual event attracting many local artists and raising money for the Nexus Paediatric and Adolescent Mental Health Unit at the John Hunter Hospital. So it’s a good cause. One that I would not hesitate to support. Unfortunately though I am still in the market for my next piece to add to my collection. But that doesn’t mean that there was not great art to be had. I particularly liked the sculptures of Braddon Snape who I have spoken about in a previous review. The $2000 odd price tag though was a little out of my reach. I could also do with a piece by the artist Linda Greedy. Her paintings are superb. One day hopefully but this weekend wasn’t my time. Lisa Pollard’s ink and gouache paintings were serene and cosy. And Jo O’Toole’s abstracts always show a self-assured technique.
One of Linda Greedy’s oil on timber paintings. I just love her way with paint and one day I’d like to add one to my collection. Just not a doggy.
The abstract painting by Jo O’Toole.
While I was out and about I took the chance to pop in to a few more galleries. I had another look at Magic Mike: Michael Zavros. Still not convinced but I could be missing some irony in there somewhere. Then on to cstudios where there was a very busy opening happening for the artists’ Peter Ermon Smith and Kay McFarlane Smith. I had a quick look but it was a tad too crowded for a decent squiz. I always enjoy looking about the smaller gallery and the shop so I spent some time in there and found some treasures.
This work by Gillie and Marc is at cstudios for $2800. Rather “funky” I think.
Then a quick stop at ASW where Shelagh Lummis has new work in her exhibition titled Wet. If you get a chance this is worth making the effort to see. Her work is beautiful and timeless. Certainly a name to remember about the Newcastle art seen. This exhibition concludes on the 14th May.
New work by Shelagh Lummis.
Helene Leane’s exhibition at Gallery 139 is a comprehensive look at the Australian Red Cedar Tree. Although I only had a quick glimpse before the gallery closed for the day it struck me as a cohesive and well executed show flowing smoothly from one work to the next. It’s funny how some exhibitions just work seamlessly. And for me this is one of them. Red Gold: The Cedar Story closes the 14th May also.
Remember to pop in to The Emporium whenever you get a chance. It’s still a haven for creatives in the Newcastle CBD.
That’s if for this weeks tour of the Newcastle art seen.
Snappy colours and a fondness for the surreal give a hint at the art on offer currently at Art Systems Wickham. But however bright and jovial this work appears there is certainly depth involved. Mandy Robinson and Edwin Rush create a dialogue that coupled with insightful titles reveals the curious soul of each artist.
Industrious application to the practice of art is evident as Robinson pursues various techniques to delve ever deeper into the imagination. Shapes repeat and echo, fine line develops into wonderful labyrinths and collage introduces bold colour. The “lumpen objects” located centrally in the art space are sculptural forms made from fabric and found objects. The source and life of these organic forms sprout from core pieces such as old jugs and mixers. It’s a bizarre yet effective concept. The pen on paper drawings mirroring the “lumpens” were a favourite.
The paintings by Rush require contemplation. Although not as prolific as Robinson his work is obvious in its profoundness. Letting a laid-back approach to paint application become dominant in his work could be his mantra as his earlier work is unknown to me. This relaxed approach is quite meditative to view. Patterns emerge behind layers of opaque paint and meaning and essence can be garnered from the random titles of each work. In fact both artists seem to have a penchant for the obscure moniker.
This exhibition is a pleasure, perhaps a tad too busy, but a real exploration of both artists’ work. There seems to be a “need to purge” approach to the pricing of the art and it’s questionable. However for the sake of each artist I hope it works.
All hail the red dot!
“As is” is currently on exhibition at Art Systems Wickham, finishing 19th October.