Friday, September 16, 2016

Gallery 47 Rylstone - Leo Cremonese

Since moving to Kandos in June this year I have been fortunate to see some amazing diverse work by mid western artist’s and it’s quite exhilarating.  So in continuing my trek through the region there is this amazing show by Leo Cremonese, a COFA graduate and a student of Charlie Sheard.  We saw Leo’s work previously in Terry Burrows ‘In Bed Together’ at Kandos Projects appearing with his lovely wife Libby Varcoe.   Although there was only one painting in that show that more so reflects the same energy as his current show it’s plain to see it’s vibrant and passionate and I’ve been a bit spoilt as I am currently working in the café ‘Coffee Concrete’ which shares the gallery space so I get to spend a bit of time with the exhibition.

My favourite piece is ‘From Death Springs Life’ oil on linen, sadly my camera didn’t do it justice but the colours really pop in this one, particularly the bright teal blue almost electric.  Maybe I noticed that colour more as my sweater on the day was matching in hue.
Eye popping colour palette like something you would see traveling through space on a Starship..  I’m seeing mostly space infractions in this show, I can so imagine space to be like these paintings!..

Second favourite is ‘Untitled’ oil on linen, 76x66cm it has the blood red chunky eye of a supernova star confronting it’s not so future self and imploding to form a black hole, but showing a glimpse of it’s former self in the bright yellow glory of futures end.

And reluctant third is ‘Untitled’ oil on linen, 122x90cm, reveals that luscious dark green which is present in some of the other works pushing darker base colours to come alive and I would like to hope, in creating new planets and or star systems.

Fleur MacDonald

3rd September – 30th September 2016

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Gallery 47 Rylstone - Gus Armstrong

Gus’s subject for this series of photographs is a wild and wonderful creative spirit in Peter Brooks.

It’s what one man can produce out of accumulated stuff and turn it into art, changing one’s whole perspective of art from stuff and making into his life surroundings.

Gus has captured Peter Brooks at his best, recreating his character into this amazing series of photographs, challenging us to view his persona and himself as his life work.

Fleur MacDonald

14th August – 29th August 2016
Gallery 47 Rylstone 47 Louee Street, Rylstone

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Kandos Projects - In Bed Together

The gallery was packed to the rafters on the night of the opening, a brilliant turn out for such a sweet little town.  Coming back from a trip to Sydney one night I glanced at the shop front of Kandos Projects and then glanced again as something caught my eye, the door sized work of Mr and Mrs Brown, ‘Zygosis Hyperacumulator: Phase 1-4, mixed media installation was glowing in the dark, so so cool!!

‘Adventures Unknown’ chalk & graphite on paper, dimensions variable by Libby Varcoe & Leo Cremonese, I found this work strikingly gorgeous, it attached itself to the softest part of my heart and I fell head over heels in love with it.  I’m a big softy and gush for realist work but don’t get me wrong it’s not the only one I gushed for in this show.  Intimate snapshots of a beautiful landscape captured perfectly in graphite and chalk, with hints of blue sneaking into the cloudscapes creating moments of rapture.  Takes up a big chunk of wallspace but needs it as they are intersperced with fragments in word to help the viewer see through the Artist’s eye.

Absolutely loved ‘Drawing Through the Picture Plane’ A, B, C & D, ink & chalk on cotton rag by Georgina Pollard & Alex Wisser where they spent the day in the Clandulla National Park and created these 4 fabulous musings of the natural environment.   I found myself transported to a place of natural quiet.

Ok, so the work ‘Untitled’ by Kat Brown, acrylic and aerosol on board was suppose to hang horizontal but you didn’t hear that from me, although I kinda like it vertical as it has a more ergonomic floral approach to it, an alien flower floating against a colourful mist.  The choice of colours help it to pop right off the canvas leaving a lasting impression in the viewers subconsious.. Which works beautifully with ‘Dancing In the Wild’ scraperboard by Na Lan, a delicate piece of creative wonder.  Next to it was a joint effort by Na Lan’s partner Reginald Buckland, ‘Cradle’ mixed media.  Another work of wonderment breaming with life as we know it!

‘He is and we are
It’s not the whole story but then it is.
Each word within it must fight its way
and once out it may not sound the same.
Formed soft or hard depending on its destination.
There is a moment when we are all joined.
We can begin or end to begin again.

 It’s a race.’

 I love this, this moment of clarity, the words from the work ‘Work Follows Form, Form Follows Work’ acrylic on canvas by Virginia Handmer & Geoffrey Payne.  It follows through to the beginning to the end, offering a chosen silence and putting up a wall to procastination.   I guess ‘Ven. Choden’ was the perfect choice to hang next to Virginia and Geoffrey’s work as it follows through to the affect of being one with the work.   It’s a wonderful painting of a young monk, his serene face offering calm and serenity to all.

Love Damian Castaldi and his enthusiaism for movement, he and Solange Kershaw make a great team.

And last but not least the wonderous shimmering beauty hanging in the window ‘Lightly’ acrylic glitter on pvc by Georgina Pollard tempting you to look upon it’s loveliness while it shimmers in the moonlight!

But before I head off there is also a mention to Terry Burrows who put this show together and if you are ever to find yourself in Rylstone while Gallery 47 is open then pop in and check out his Back Book, pretty damn awesome!

Fleur MacDonald

5th August - 28th August 2016
Kandos Projects, 18 Angus Avenue, Kandos, 2848

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre - Glenn Locklee

The work of South West Sydney artist, Glenn Locklee, observes two societal phenomema: the increasing redundancy of small business and domestic manufacturing; and the proliferation of high-rise, high –density living as house and land ownership become increasingly unattainable.

The burgeoning demand and ease of access to imported commodities has governments and businesses scrambling to claim new expanses of riverside land for development.  Such voracity has resulted in an ever-changing physical environment and a desired lifestyle of material aspiration and human disconnect.

Such issues currently threaten Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre and it’s pristine surroundings.  Locklee presents three new commissioned works that contemplate the history and architectural character of the Casula powerhouse building and it’s capacity as an arts centre to recollect and respond to local stories in the rapidly growing region of South West Sydney.

Locklee’s paintings are not overtly political, nor do they carry an agenda of protest.  They stand as silent witnesses to change; evocative peripheral images that conjure up subliminal memories and reflection of the industrial environments of South West Sydney where the artist grew up.  This is evident not just in the subjects of these works, but also the poetic architecture and process of making these works.  The sparse geometric construction and layers of tertiary colours play off against the expressionist rendering of surface and portrayal of light.  The use of aluminium as a canvas – known to be a common building material – complements the surface texture, but also reveals the very material of our being.

3rd April - 3rd July 2016

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Monday, March 21, 2016

Artsite - Sydney Printmakers Celebrating 55 years

Printmaking, like drawing, is often seen as the poor cousin to painting and sculpture.  And I have as yet to work out exactly why that is.  With all it’s wonderful techniques and the endless richness of it’s textures and wonderful ‘surprises’ in execution, printmaking has given us some eye-popping artifacts over history.  Picasso loved it, so did Miro and Warhol.

The current show at Camperdown’s Artsite – Sydney Printmakers Celebrating 55 years – makes it even harder for me to understand the poor cousin attitude.  As part of the 2016 celebrations of the Australia Print Council’s Year of Print, curator Madeleine Tuckfield-Carrano has put together sixty works by Sydney artists that span the range of printmaking, conceptually and technically.

From Neilton Clarke’s lovely surreal ‘Agikawa Spinner (33rpm)’ through Prue Crabbe’s smoke-fragile ‘Sublunary Diversions II’ to the brusque rust textures of ‘Landfall 1’ and ‘Landfall2’ by Anthea Bosenburg, the range is breath-taking.  It is all I can do to not reach out and touch these works – print has that effect: the colours and textures, although aiming for the relatively flat, have a tactile, almost erotic attraction.  Faint indentations, raised shallow welts, creases and almost imperceptible waves across the surface all draw us in subtly.

Though, flat is not all – Laura Stark’s ‘Totems’ stand as printed paper cylinder’s, tracing paper squares lean out and threaten to fly off the surface of ‘The Space Between’ by Robyn Waghorn.   Tuckfield-Carrano’s ‘Autumn Rain’ has fabric stitches across the pigment.

The range of techniques – a couple had me groping for Google – is smartly covered here as well; it is one of the joys of printmaking that it’s techniques go from roughly stamping the paper with hard woodblocks through to gluing elements across the plate as in a collograph, or the relative caressing it with other approaches, such as aquatint.

Rew Hanks’ ‘Peaches and Cream’ (relief print) has that perfect graphic hard edge while the linocut ‘Scratching for Bugs’ by Joanne Gwatkin-Williams shows a charming vaguery of line. 

Poor cousin? Bah.  These pieces are all as exquisite as you will find, speaking with maybe a quieter poetry that their oil-painted relatives, but powerful poetry nonetheless.

John Hardaker
Guest Reviewer

5th March – 27th March 2016

Friday, March 18, 2016

Ben Roberts Gallery - Jane Lennon

I’m all for a bit of recycling and even better when it’s made into Art as there is more of a guarantee that it won’t go to landfill.  The process of making your own paper requires considerable patience and in Jane’s case years to half a lifetime to create her objects and sculptures.  One day when I visited her at her home I was fortunate to view inside of her studio, I was aghast at what laid before my eyes, floor to ceiling shelves stored tightly with works all made from paper making her studio an entire work in itself!

‘Biophilia’ at Ben Roberts Gallery in Lawson, Blue Mountains plays heavily on the organic whimsical, emanating like stars in our universe but at the same time keeping our feet firmly on the ground.

Chairs, tables, mirror’s and a coffin, yes that’s right a ‘coffin’ ‘Carrying conviction-Six Feet Under’ paper and acrylic, 60x176x62centimeters of recycled paper.  A pink coffin supported with 6 dark red feet, a perfect gift for that person with everything or one that just wants something a bit different to go out in.

Even the 3 tiered food stand was made from paper but thankfully not the really yummy home made dip. Adding to the whimsy were scattered around the top of the table and on top of the coffin were a series of ‘Rodents’ and not all the same, they helped infuse the humour and seriousness of what this work was all about.

Fleur MacDonald

5th – 17th March 2016
Ben Roberts Gallery, 10 Benang Street, Lawson, Blue Mountains