Monday, November 9, 2015

Could've been a lady

I'm feeling pretty loved up after my exhibition opening 'On a clear day you can see forever' at Gertrude Contemporary on Friday night. Lots of friends new and old turned up, and I felt really pleased with the exhibition as a whole and the individual works I produced. I made a couple of sales, which is always a bonus, and celebrated with metallic gold bottles of champagne I'd bought in anticipation. The exhibition is up until December 19, and Gertrude Contemporary is open Tuesday-Saturday. My exhibition is upstairs in Studio 12, but I also have some work downstairs in the annual Studio Artists exhibition. Thank you to everyone who has had a look at the exhibition and those who intend to, it means a lot to me!

In between last minute preparations and install over the past couple of weeks, I've been working, spending my money made from working on clothes, hanging out with my boyfriend and his friends some of whom have fast become mine too, hanging out with my friends and continuing to enjoy my existence as a 24 year old. I was invited to the premiere of The Dressmaker a few weeks ago, and went there via the red carpet dressed up in a black tie appropriate ensemble. It was fun, but super foreign and very focussed on a dull sort of facade. It made me reassess every event similar I've seen pictures of, they're never as glamorous or fabulous as you may think, well, that was what I took from it anyway. Anyway, it was a super experience and I'm not adverse to doing it again, that's for sure.

My book was featured on Rookie Magazine recently where you can check out some pictures from the inside And, my latest November Bad Girl Painter interview went up, too In other news, I curated the Still Life section for Desktop Magazine (pictured below) and wrote this piece for the Daily Review:

Today (Monday) I went to my studio for the first time since very late on Friday night (post-opening my friends and I hung out there) and I cleaned up all the empty bottles of booze, took out the trash, wiped surfaces and blu-tacked some new things up on my walls. It's time now pretty much, to start working towards my next exhibition in March, and I feel good in a sense like I've got a bit of momentum up with my painting practice. It's almost a year since I moved into my studio at Gertrude Contemporary, and while I'm excited I still have another year left of my residency, I'm sad at the same time that a year is gone, already. I'm half way though one of the many rites of passages a Melbourne artist must go through, and am hoping next year doesn't go half as quickly as this one.

It's almost my 25th birthday which depending on how you look at it could be pretty monumental. After a conversation on Friday night about how I'm "over the hill" in a world obsessed with youth I realised that I don't actually believe that. What I love about still being (relatively) young is that one can never see that energy and effervescence you have in such abundance ever drying up, I guess until it does, or maybe it really never does. 25 is still a baby in relative terms, depending on how long you intend to live I suppose. I think I've made the most of my first 25 years. I don't have a single thing I wouldn't done differently, except maybe tried to fit more in. Here's what I've managed to do over the past few weeks... in no particular order.

At the Dressmaker Premiere 

Desktop Magazine Still life section


The aftermath

New friend

A sunset over a Sunday BBQ 

At Tarrawarra Museum of Art 
The aftermath 
At Tarrawarra Museum of Art

Oh, and here are a couple of photos Daine my gallerist took at the opening:

My work downstairs
Everyone in the gallery upstairs where my solo exhibition is

I want to reach in this photo and fix whatever is going on with my fringe. Otherwise it's cute :)

Sunday, October 11, 2015

All the things that we do for fun

It's no secret that I've been lazy with updating this blog. I was wondering why that is, when even in some of my busier periods I've managed to relatively keep up. I realised just now, with a bit of thinking, that it's because I'm very content and happy. And, busy being content and happy. I have fun on my weekends, and most of my weeknights. I spend less time on the computer. That doesn't mean I have to be hauled up and sad to update this blog, it just means I have to consciously insert time to write here when I get distracted with the great things in life. Gonna make more of an effort to do that I guess, but at the same time I'm so happy that I'm happy and am going to keep enjoying that.

I'm working towards an exhibition I have in November at Gertrude Contemporary. Funnily enough earlier on in the year I was so stressed that I wouldn't have enough time with my book coming out to do the work for this show that I started really early and now it's all completely under control. It's odd for me to have enough time not to rush things, but it's been brilliant. The title of the exhibition is On a clear day you can see forever, because it's true.

I'm making paintings and fabric prints for the show, and my work will be upstairs in the Studio 12 gallery space. Downstairs will be the studio artists exhibition, in which I will also be exhibiting some paintings and works on fabric. I'm really excited to show my new work and especially excited to show at Gertrude Contemporary for the first time after having a studio there for, well, almost this whole year now.

The aforementioned fun things I've been occupying my spare time with are vast and varied so it's hard to pinpoint single events to describe in my usual detail. When you have a partner, you get invited to double the things you used to because your friendship circle is now theirs too and vice versa. My boyfriend has a really remarkable group of friends, and I've been so lucky to tag along to countless dinner parties, parties, events, etc. I've enjoyed broadening my horizons socially because my circles were pretty solidly stemming from art backgrounds and it's nice sometimes to experience a little outside of that (not too far outside that though, don't worry).

People keep asking me: "How's your book going?" so I want to include that answer here too, incase you were wondering. I guess my answer is that I don't really know how it's going, to be honest. I'm so pleased with how the launch went, and with how the book has been received by those close to me, but otherwise all I know is that it is "out there" and maybe in the hands of people I don't know and I feel quite uninvolved with that or something. I don't have any sales figures to gauge the larger scheme of things which I guess is what people are edging at when they ask how my book is going. To sum up, I guess, I think it's going really well from where I sit! But I don't know how it's going on a larger scale. Hopefully flying off the shelves I guess ;)

I started a new column at Rookie Magazine called Bad Girl Painters. I will interview a young artist monthly and the interview will then go up on the site. The name is supposed to be a play on Bad Boy Painters who are the worst, and are people like Pablo Picasso and Damien Hirst. I don't want the name to be exclusive to just painters or just girls, either. The first interview I did was with Ale Salmán and you can read it here:

Other ventures include this article I wrote on my philosophies on collecting for Dumbo Feather. It is titled More is More and you can read it here:

* * *

It has been unseasonably warm in Melbourne, and I am enjoying it immensely. It's only mid-Spring and my winter coats are well and truly packed away, I've near forgotten what it is like to wear stockings. While I know that this early onslaught of summer is bad in a sense that it is going to be a dry summer - not much rain - which subsequently means it's not good for both my Mum and Dad's plant-based businesses, and that bushfires will again be a big threat where I live, not to mention that it is pretty evident of global warming... I can't help but revel in the sunshine and blossom. It's making me feel so light.

The best example of this weather being the best ever was when we had a long weekend a week or two ago now. While initially I was so reluctant to acknowledge this newly instated public holiday in aid of a football match, my boss insisted I take the Friday off. I spent the day in my studio, sleeveless dress and sandals, painting and basking in the sunshine through my windows. I knocked off early, bought a couple of beers and went round to my boyfriend's house where he presented me with a bunch of flowers. We sat out the back in the sunshine talking and drinking and watching his cat catch mice with precision hunting techniques.

I posted a picture the other day on Instagram that was just a little collage I put together and I captioned it with one of my favourite Madonna lyrics from Like A Virgin: "I made it through the wilderness, somehow I made it through-o-o" and it is with that sentiment that I'm feeling about a lot of things at the moment.

Here is an assortment of pictures that I hope are in some kind of order that makes sense.

I made it through the wilderness
Odd pears socks and daggy Clarks sandals that I love
Blossom on my way to work
Me on my way to work
Blossom at brunch 
Pink ping pong at brunch
Small painting 
Desk details
Modelling my cute new bag by Rachel Burke
Painting for fun 
Birthday times
New Verner dress (It was still cold on this day!)

Birthday table by me!

I went to the Royal Melbourne show with Mum

Studio views
I bought this painting by friend and artist Annabelle Kingston. I love it 

No makeup and lazing around the studio on my day off

New Gorman top!
What my desk really looks like
New Romance was Born denim dress of my dreams!
Friend and artist Tai Snaith painted my portrait :) Here it is at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery
The Secret Garden at ACCA on Saturday 
Magic Sunday morning windowsill today
And lastly, the entirety of the rainbow out my window this afternoon