Monday, 9 November 2015

My show at Boom: "Cheap Pop"

Hello!  A couple of friends who were not able to make it to the opening of my show "Cheap Pop" (at Boom Gallery, 11 Rutland Street, Newtown) have asked if I could catalogue the work on my blog.  I also thought that it would be a good way to redress the fact that I am blogging less and less lately (damn that incredibly convenient and highly addictive Instagram.....!).  Above: Berliner Pho, a loving dedication to a fantastic soup that I ate a few months ago in Berlin, which seemed more tailored to the German palette than the Vietnamese.  A bit like those "Steak and Fried Rice" signs one used to see in front of Chinese restaurants here?  I love that sort of cross cultural adaptation.

Above: Geelong Player.  I wanted a really varied little family of wooden figures, and decided that it would be fun to revisit my footballers, as I still love them.

 Above: Kebab.
Above: Life.  A cross section of a worm (not in nature's colours, though) wearing a hoodie from Urban Outfitters.  I thought it would be an appropriate combination.
 Above: Marlboro Man, 2015. I always love documenting local pop cultural phenomena.  The boys in Melbourne are trading beards for moustaches and are still into the 'Normcore' look.  I decided to take his vest and shirt straight out of Seinfeld.  The cap is one that I observed a young Melbourne man wearing.
 Above: Olive as Kim Kardashian.  This one is dedicated to Gin, Chelsea and the young ladies at Trophy Wife.  SOLD.

Above: Tony.  This wasn't actually meant to be our former PM Tony Abbott, but after he was toppled recently, I decided that I would name my little man after him, mostly out of an unexpected pity.

 Above: No.1 Ideas Woman.  A double sided self portrait.
Above: Dalmatian Clock Hand.  (A functioning clock, part of a series of wooden 'severed arm' clocks that I have been making sporadically since 2010.) When I was in Croatia in August, I visited the Ethnographic Museum in Split for the first time.  This work is dedicated to the fantastic textiles there.  I hope to make more work early next year inspired by the museum and the brilliant book on fishing that I bought there.
 Above: Egg Woman! (I decided at the last minute to add sauce.)
 Above: Save Earth It's The Only Planet With Pizza.  SOLD.
Above: Split 1979, another work inspired by my visit to The Ethnographic Museum in Split.  
(My family spent the summer of 1979 in the former Yugoslavia, when to our delight the Mediterranean Games were held in Split, hence the souvenir beach towel, above.)
 Above: St Kilda Player.
The 'windows' series: scenes that I have witnessed while walking past windows in my neighbourhood, or rather, my memory of them.  Above and below:  Simpson Street, 6pm and Rotherwood Street, 5pm.  The scene above was one that I witnessed regularly, until recently.  Surrounded by piles of books, I had the feeling that this old couple needed to glean as much information as possible before their lives ended.  Now there's an unplugged fridge blocking the view, and last week that chintz couch was on the footpath.
Below: in contrast, a scene that I glimpsed for a moment.  Dressed in black in a modernist white room, I imagined that these were extended family members who had just returned from a funeral, and were playing out their usual roles, only with unusual exaggeration.

 Above and below: Attitude Sofa and Pain is Just a Skin You Can Shed.   Billboards that I have observed in my suburb.  I am endlessly fascinated by the ways in which masculinity is created and depicted.  The AFL footballer below is to me a fairly comical and extreme example; but I liked the contrast of the conceited man on his expensive couch above with the tiny worker setting his enormous image up.

(When I took the photo that I used as a reference for the painting, I noticed afterwards that the other workmen -- who should have been hoisting UP the poster -- were actually waving at me and making childish gestures with their hands.  Men!)
All of work shown here is acrylic on plywood.  The figures vary from approximately 25 - 70 cm in height.  The paintings are all 50 x 40 cm.
There are a few pieces which I have not shown here.  I am having some technical difficulty with Blogger today, and thought that I had better finish this post before all of the work I put into it disappears!  For the full catalogue, have a look at Boom's site.
No, this wouldn't happen on Instagram.  But then, the failing of Instagram is that it is much more difficult to tell a detailed story like this one.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

The last couple of weeks

Hello!  Recently I had the great pleasure of working on a book cover for Text Publishing: Iris and the Tiger by Leanne Hall.  The little portraits shown here are just a few of those which will be featured on the front and back covers.  I also worked on black and white chapter heading illustrations, which were lovely to do, too.  The book will be released in January, but can be pre-ordered here.
 HOORAY!  Calendar girl for November!  My illustration for the Frankie magazine calendar, 2015, above.
Above: Another wooden figure for my exhibition at Boom Gallery, Newtown (Geelong) starting this Friday November 5.  Egg Woman!
Painted bats for Modern Times, above and in progress, below.  Thanks again go to Miss Pen for being so thoughtful and finding these for me in Tasmania!)

Dark coloured backgrounds are so effective but such a pain in the butt to paint!  You always need at least two coats, sometimes three.

My wooden volcano on TV!!!!  Richard Corser and Sarah Snook in The Beautiful Lie, ABC1.  The couple stares into their sleeping child's room, their lives about to change forever....  (Boom!)
 Above: a very LARGE pile of dinosaurs for Modern Times.....
And more work for Boom Gallery, above and below: No.1 Ideas Woman (a double sided self portrait) and Berliner Pho, a dedication to a strange and wonderful bowl of the stuff that I had in Berlin: a Vietnamese-German hybrid.  I LIVE for that sort of cross cultural food.

Above: an illustration for Jean-Paul Gagnon, a political philosopher specialising in democratic theory, who has been writing about democratic social structures in the animal and plant kingdom.  This illustration will be on The Conversation soon.

Friday, 16 October 2015

The last couple of weeks....

Hello!  I have been busy working on a lovely illustration project that I can't show you yet, and preparing for my show at Boom Gallery which starts on November 5.  I will have a big strange family of wooden figures, and five conventionally rectangular shaped paintings in the show.  Above: a wooden figure in progress.

Details of two conventionally shaped paintings that I have been working on for the show.  Above: Attitude Sofa, based on a billboard that I saw recently going up on the corner of Bridge and Punt Roads in Richmond.  Below: Rotherwood Street, 5pm, part of a series based on scenes I have witnessed while peering through windows in my neighbourhood.

Above: Meet Sidney Nolan in the window of my favourite bookshop, Readings, in Carlton!!!  YAY!!!!  It's next to the Alice Oehr illustrated The Little Book of Australia's Big Things, which makes it even better.
Above: this month's artwork for Gardening Australia magazine, minus a little seed-strewing figure, which I painted separately but now cannot find......

Monday, 5 October 2015

The last couple of weeks.....

Above: Looking through some old sketches/ templates, trying to work myself out.....

 Above: Working on a painting for my show at Boom Gallery in Geelong next month!
 Above: It was very remiss of me not to mention earlier that I am taking part in a beautiful plant themed group exhibition at Long Division Gallery, Schoolhouse Studios, Collingwood.  A detail of my painting Smoke shown here.
 Above and below: more work in progress for Boom next month.

Above: Trying to decide whether to sell or keep this giant version of my Blue Apple Man, which I made as part of my Craft Victoria window last year.  He is 130 cm tall.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Strike - further to previous post

Rather remiss of me not to include the actual portrait characters created for Strike (see post below).  These were painted using acrylic on wood, and are A4 size.  The finished size at the bowling centre is rather larger!


Yes!  Mural sized versions of my illustrations at Strike Highpoint (Melbourne). La la la la la karaoke.....

A dangerous handsome welcome to the toilets.
Highly detailed, fun, pretty wallpaper ... with sting.
My favourite of all six of the characters, and the prettiest of toilet welcomes.
I am very proud of the illustrations that I have painted for Strike Highpoint.  Clever designer Terence Bergagna and Casa Forte Group.  Good on you, Strike, for taking a big risk and doing something different with your decor.  It was a pleasure to work with you all.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

The last few weeks....

Above: Illustration for Gardening Australia magazine, September.
Above:  Illustration for brand new food magazine Bread Wine and Thou.
 Above: a wintery painted bat that is in my Etsy shop.
Above and below: details from a couple of paintings that I am working on for a show at Boom Gallery in November.

 Above: a detail from an illustration which will appear on The Conversation soon.
Above: and -- last but not least! -- I have received a copy of the Sidney Nolan book that I illustrated earlier this year!  Very exciting.  I am so impressed by the quality of the colour reproductions: they are SO true to the colours in my paintings.  The book will be available in October.