Tuesday, September 28, 2010


My Penpal sent me the above Madonna single with a lovely letter. It is so great to get mail, I just love coming home to a letter or parcel from Ebay or something. I think in a world where everything is instant it is refreshing to have to wait for something, to go through a realistic process of transferring things that are tangible and real. It is incredibly satisfying.

I also came across the 'Girl's Own Book' at my local Op Shop. Definitely one of the nicest things I've found in a while. It's from 1959 and has an inscription on the inside cover "To Pam, with love for Christmas 1959 From Aunty Marjorie and Uncle Sam" I just love junk like that. I reckon I would have been disappointed if I got that book if I was 12 or something in 1959 though. I think it's super cool now but if I was trying to be cool back then I don't think it would have been cool, you know.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Viva Las Vegas

I'm going to a 1950's party on the weekend and I had it in my head that I must do a pin-up hair style. So instead of writing my Art History presentation that is due next Tuesday, I practiced doing my hair. I learnt how to do the fringe roll and other things from videos on YouTube made by cool girls who are really good at doing hair.

So I was thinking about how great it was that YouTube could show me how to do things like that. Then I got more distracted by watching clips of 50s girl bands among other things like Elvis and Buddy Holly. I was thinking about how YouTube is kind of like time travel. You can access any period of time in almost the entire 20th century right up until this second. It's kind of this weird means of connecting past time and places with the present. I love it! As do most humans with internet access which was, when I last checked, about 1,407,724,920 people.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Peter Pan Syndrome

Because it is the school holidays at the moment and the Royal Melbourne Show is on, there are a lot of little children with their Grandparents catching the train. I like this, actually, even though usually little kids really irritate me.

So the people who end up sitting across from me are little girls with their Nanna or something, I guess because I don't look like a stoned 15 year old boy holding a NERF gun and I have red hair. People trust people with red hair. Anyway so yesterday these two little girls sat across from me wearing like High School Musical T-Shirts and they were totally silent like staring at me the whole journey. I just like how kids can stare at whatever the hell they want and it's okay because they're kids. I found it really funny.

I kind of smile at them when they're staring at me and then they get all shy. They reminded me a lot of me when I was little. Anyway so I got up to get off and the Nanna is like telling them to move so I can get out and is like "Say bye to the nice lady" And they kind of smile or whatever and then I realized that when little kids see you as a lady, you've really grown up or something.

Kids at the Cafe' I work at call me 'the lady' too. It's so scary. I don't want to be a lady. I just want to read Babysitters Club books forever.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Working hard for the money

I have a week off Uni so I've picked up some extra shifts at work, which is what I will be doing most days this week. On the days I am not working, I will be working on my Art history presentation which is the Tuesday I get back.

So far, no topics in our reader have really stood out to me. Lately though, I have been really interested in the idea of 'heaven' and 'paradise' and how people subconsciously attempt to construct these realms in real life. Totally an ambiguous and challenging thing to link to art but I'll probably find some weak way to do it. I figure it's better than regurgitating the same old shit we hear every week about, I don't know, how our lecturer's clutch in his car is broken or how he lost his USB.

I guess I got thinking about heaven after I saw this E.T card my Aunty sent me. I just think that is such a brilliant movie and the still on the card was kind of heart wrenching or something. Makes me think about how small we are and how we're all just kind of floating trying to grab on to anything that feels safe or real. Trying to find a home, yearning to live eternally and searching for paradise.

Saturday, September 18, 2010


I made these drawings when I got home at 2.30 last night. The taxi driver decided he didn't want to drive on the dirt road where my house is so I had to walk for a while. It was so dark, and weird and, kind of nice.

My friends and I have this saying that is like "It was a good time" but it can be any kind of thing like "It was an interesting time" or a awkward time, a true time, a dry time, a warm time, a crazy time, a scary time, a fur coat time, etc, etc. The phrase was originally coined by our friend Grace and it's just totally taken off. Anyway last night was a seriously out of control time, a weird time, a bad time, and a good time. That Dickens' quote that's like "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" also came to mind when I was walking in the pitch dark up to my house.

I now know that it is possible for 'the times' to merge and become hybrid times, it can be a bad time and a good time at the same time. In these times, all one can do is listen to the Beatles, switch on the fairy lights in your room and draw until 4am, then get up, go to work and face the day.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A good read

I went to Savers this afternoon when I should have been finishing my presentation on John Lennon and Yoko Ono that is due tomorrow. I bought the above books which are really great. I admittedly have gotten sucked in to the Rebirthing one... they get 'rebirthed' in the hot tub on the front cover, seriously. 'The Mind' freaks me out. There's stuff about sensory deprivation and other things that significantly scare me.

I have been thinking a lot about people. Just regular people. I love just regular people on the train with bald patches, toothpaste stains on their collar, pimples, clumpy mascara, re-growth, cross eyes, and chipped nail polish. I just love that shit, it's real or something. If I didn't catch the train for so long each day I don't think I'd get enough time to appreciate the awkward beauty of these things. That real, unimportant stuff is kind of the most important. I know it brings me back to reality or something, reminds me that we're really here.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


I finished making my first ever Zine today! I had so much fun doing it, I really found it enjoyable. Funnily enough the thing that took me the longest to do was find a stapler big enough to staple the middle together! I went to every single office and department in the VCA until my lecturer found one for me in a 'secret' staff only photocopy room. It was very satisfying finally putting those staples in, I tell you.

So if you are interested in buying a copy, you can contact me on my email address: minnagilligan@hotmail.com
The Zine is AU$3.00 and within Australia the postage will be AU$1.50. For international rates, let me know your location and I will give you a quote via email. Payment can be made via Paypal : ) If you know me in 'real life', just come and find me in person, at Uni or something! Leave me a note if I'm not in my studio.

Tomorrow I am dropping off some copies to 'Sticky Institute', which is a Zine shop underneath Flinders Street Station. The address is Shop 10 Campbell Arcade Melbourne, more commonly known as the Degraves Street Underpass, so you can check it out there too. Anyway I'm off to start making another one because I am now addicted. So long! xox

Friday, September 10, 2010

Self indulgent post #239

There's a photobooth in the city that makes everything look like it's from another time. I really like it. It's a bit tragic that I have to do these things by myself though however I maintain the attitude that nothing is embarrassing if it is for art even though I know it's not true.

Interesting times

Incase anyone is wondering, I had a really great day today. I have begun to make my first 'Zine' and so far it has been an incredibly enjoyable experience. When I am finished, I will let you know where and how you can gain access to a copy! It will have drawings, pictures of Jan Brady, poems, stickers and a bunch of other junk.

I have also been drawing intensely, just quick and immediate ball point pen scribble drawings on perspective graph paper. For me the awkward marks I make o are therapeutic or something. If I couldn't use my hands to draw, paint or make I honestly don't know how I would release this crazy feeling I get when I need to say something or somehow express this vibe I get.

I'm going out 'clubbing' again this weekend for my other high school friends birthday. This will make for interesting times. I actually end up feeling kind of inspired after spending time in a different environment surround by 'normal' people. It's good. I sometimes just like regular shit. Anyway I got my disposable camera developed today and here are some pictures.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Mystic crystal revelation

In my photography class we had to photograph a 3D object, so I photographed a magic crystal tree! It was indeed a fun time. I am always inspired by the psychedelic colours. At the moment, I'm really into acidic colours that are kind of arresting and bordering on offensive. In my painting practice, I used to take this interest and go crazy with colour thinking like 'more is more', however, I feel like I have matured significantly in the last 12 months in relation to the subtly of my colour use.

While colour will always be an integral part of my work, I have realized it is significantly more powerful when used sparingly, against a grey or white. Not every square inch of a canvas needs to have mind blowing, jarringly contrasting colour. It loses something in mass. Colour is an incredibly powerful trick of the light that should not be used carelessly, as hard as it is to restrain oneself (especially when you're me).

It's the same with clothes and interiors too. There is definitely something in subtly. It makes for a sleeker product, letting the aesthetics breathe and stand alone. Funnily enough I say this from within the realms of halfheartedly organized clutter and a floordrobe. I'm still learning.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Oh, Yoko

For one of my classes, I had to make a photo response to the current exhibition on at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art (ACCA) 'Gestures and Procedures'. I took a few of these bad quality images on my webcam, they are immediate and unedited. Tomorrow I'm going to go to Officeworks and blow them up really big (A0) for submission on Wednesday.

I want them to be pixilated and ghostly. I was inspired by the grainy and unsettling aesthetic of many of the videos in the exhibition. To me they are similar to a video diary on a Reality TV show or to some kind of seance or exorcism. I like how they're just a bit shit.

My favourite work in the exhibition was Yoko Ono's 'Cut Piece' from 1965. You can view it online here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F2IgqYiaywU&feature=related

Sunday, September 5, 2010


I've been thinking a lot about the saying: "You only get out what you put in". It's an interesting one, and this week I really realized how important it is in the art world.

Since art is supposed to be this exchange of ideas and opinions does that mean that conversations and greetings between people are kind of like art too? Admittedly I've never been the best communicator. I'm articulate in my head but in reality I feel like I never really say what I want to say or communicate in the way I want to communicate.

This worries me, because people are innately aware of how others communicate with them. If someone remembers your name, you remember. If someone goes out of their way to smile at you then you remember. The people who don't seek out others to offer an exchange of ideas and opinions and pleasantries or whatever kind of go under the radar. It's like having a beautifully creative mind and not making anything.

So back to "You only get out what you put in". What I'm trying to say is that if you shut up and never offer anything in like a smile or a conversation with someone you can't really be bothered talking to or an amazing masterpiece, how can you expect to get something equally valuable out? Like a relationship or a friendship or whatever. My new thing is to offer more stuff 'in' instead of just taking out. Art is a circular thing and only valuable when shared between souls.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Still loving John

This is a work I did on 'The Wall' at Uni. You may notice there is NO COLOUR, very unusual. Thanks to the wonderous invention of the photocopier I was able to do this in less than an hour in between a million other things that I am doing. The exhibition 'Since We Last Spoke' that I helped set up opens tomorrow night at 6pm at Margaret Lawrence Gallery. Information can be found here: http://vcam.unimelb.edu.au/gallery