Visual Arts


Today is WORLD CHILDREN’S DAY and there’s been a takeover!

 UNICEF Australia’s Goodwill Ambassador, Ken Done, is helping with the celebrations for the anniversary of the Convention of the Rights of the Child by allowing a takeover of his studio.

This year the focus is on Article 12 – Respect for the views of the child, which stipulates; When adults are making decisions that affect children, children have the right to say what they think should happen and have their opinions taken into account.

For the first time Done has allowed a group of children, seven-year olds, to take over his studio and I had the opportunity to speak to him and two of his charges before their artwork goes on sale at a gala dinner this evening.   This activity is one of a range of high-profile kids ‘takeovers’ that UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Organisation, has been facilitating across the globe in the lead up to World Children’s Day. The aim is to raise the profile and voices of children in places and spaces where they may not usually be seen or heard.

Georgia’s painting.

Sini Wallace and Georgia Cummings from Plunkett Street Public School have each created one of the 40 cm x 40 cm panels which will be displayed together as one large scale artwork.

“We wanted it to work as collection” says Done.  “We were looking for consistency and cohesion, so I drew a circle, a face as a starting point.” He knew that the kids would make it their own from there.  Children paint with optimism, he explains.  Nice things: sun, flowers, water.  “We wanted to celebrate the lucky (sic) of being here. “

The famous artist has seen the other side.

Done has had a nearly 30-year relationship with UNICEF since he was asked to decorate the UNICEF Pavilion facade for Expo 88 in Brisbane.  “They asked me to be the first UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and I just said yes.”

As part of this role he has visited and worked in difficult places.  “In the camps there are children who draw images of war and other things, not because they have read a comic with it in but because they have lived it.”   While not known for his darker work, (“95 % of my work is beauty, colour, optimism”) Done expresses his passionate belief that “getting it out”, even when there a few resources and he and the children draw with a pointed stick in the dirt, is beneficial.   He references his 2012 exhibition which had images of dreams, drowning and death after a difficult period in his life.

But colours abound today as we chat in his vibrant gallery at The Rocks.  And it’s not just his iconic style that brings the light, Sini and Georgia are thoroughly enjoying themselves!

When I spoke with them I began by asking  about colour.  Georgia is a pastel girl.  “I just added lots of white” she explains.  Sini is more figurative and describes her painting as “a yellow opera house, a red flower, a purple butterfly.”  She goes on to explain that “Ken helped me mix the colours on a piece of paper.”

Sini’s Painting

Done tells me that giving the kids strong primary colours to start with was a further way of having the individual panels work as a collection.  He knows that their imagination will take them off on their own visual and imaginative journey.  As it has for him since he was their age growing up as an only child in a country town.  “If Mum asked me about a birthday party I was at, I would draw it rather than explain.”

When Done spoke about the takeover  its clear that, for him,  visual communication,  a painting , is “half a question”. So I was inspired to ask the girls the other half. What, I asked them, do you want your paintings to say to the children of the world?

Georgia responds immediately,

It’s a person on an adventure, not giving up.” 

Sini takes a little longer to get her message exactly right …

 “Don’t be afraid.”


For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit

Follow UNICEF on Twitter and Facebook

For information about Ken Done, UNICEF Australia’s Goodwill Ambassador , visit





Design exhibition exclusive to Powerhouse Museum
The Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS) will open a major contemporary design exhibition on 2 March 2018 to celebrate the 20th SYDNEY DESIGN FESTIVAL  Curated by and exclusive to the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, COMMON GOOD explores design trends in Australia and neighbouring regions and the positive design-lead responses to social, ethical and environmental challenges.
“Design practice is constantly evolving, reacting to the challenges of its time. With COMMON GOOD we examine the place of ground-breaking designers from our region in shaping solutions for our future society,” said MAAS Director and CEO, Dolla Merrillees.
MAAS is pleased to be working with a new generation of socially-engaged designers from Australia and Asia, to both display and acquire works through this exhibition.”
“The Asia-Pacific is our creative commons. This exhibition is an opportunity to broaden our lens to explore the work and practices of a new generation of designers who are boldly taking action to affect positive change and influence long-term sustainability in our region,” said exhibition curator, Keinton Butler.
COMMON GOOD  surveys contemporary design practices from Australia and the Asia-Pacific. Designers from a range of disciplines and countries are profiled, including leading international designers and architects NendoStudio SwineBijoy JainJo NagasakaKwangho Lee and WOHA, as well as globally recognised local designers Ken WongLucy McRae and Henry Wilson.
The exhibition is framed by five themes that address increasingly complex challenges including housing affordability, waste management, population pressures and technological obsessions. 
Life Cycles explores emerging sustainable design practices in a reference library of design materials, including those made from industrial and agricultural waste. Award-winning Japanese designers AMAM demonstrate how algae and agar bio-materials can be used in packaging that could ultimately replace non-biodegradable plastics. The Life Cycles resource library will be made available during and beyond the exhibition, contributing to the education of emerging designers. 
AMAM research shell waste in Ishinomak
 Return to Craft profiles contemporary designers preserving cultural heritage through collaborative projects with artisans, craftspeople and manufacturers. Crafts such as woodworking, enamelware, ceramics and weaving are being given new relevance when worked by technologically driven designers. For instance, South Korean designer Kwangho Lee is reviving the ancient practice of Ott-chil high-gloss lacquering in projects such as the New Armor stool. Such projects bring fresh attention to otherwise forgotten traditions and can contribute to the survival of centuries-old crafts.
Kwangho Lee
 Connected Experiences demonstrate the ability of technology to generate social awareness and influence personal behaviour. In an exclusive commission for MAAS called Watermelon Sugar Wellness Lab, graphic designer and visual artist Pamm Hong invites you into an immersive installation where your online behaviour is transformed into a personalized virtual organism, providing a health check on your digital engagement habits.
Community Engagement explores projects that address social integration and poverty in the face of rapid urbanisation as well as international development initiatives and fully integrated, collaborative design concepts.
Design Fictions considers the role of the designer in shaping our future. Through their speculative and critical design projects, designers are questioning and debating the possible social implications of our scientific and technological developments, through carefully staged fictional scenarios. The Rare Earthenware project by Unknown Fields is the result of an expedition to Inner Mongolia, in which toxic mud was taken from a radioactive rare earth tailings lake and used to craft a set of ceramic vessels into the shape of highly valuable and recognisable Ming dynasty porcelain vases. Each vessel is sized in relation to the amount of waste created in the production of three items of technology: a smartphone, a laptop and an electric car battery cell. Such projects shape our patterns of excessive consumption and waste into powerful statements.


Unknown Fields
Picture: Toby Smith
COMMON GOOD opens as part of the Sydney Design Festival, an annual celebration of design with over 100 events at venues across Sydney from 2 – 11 March 2018.
For more infomation about COMMON GOOD or the 2018 SYDNEY DESIGN FESTIVAL visit


A panel of more than 50 Fashion Industry leaders voted to elect this year’s winner of the Industry’s highest accolade, the Australian Fashion Laureate for outstanding achievement.

Australian designer Dion Lee was honoured with the Australian Fashion Laureate Award for 2017 at a ceremony hosted at The Cutaway, Barangaroo Reserve last Thursday evening.

At age 32, Lee becomes the youngest recipient of the award. He was also the first designer to stage a runway show at the Sydney Opera House. Now based in New York, Lee frequents the Fashion Week runways in London and New York and continues to build his brand globally. Dion Lee started his business in 2008 after graduating from Sydney’s Fashion Design Studio. He has come a long way since, developing a distinctive and sophisticated signature style balancing innovation and wearability. Continue reading 10th AUSTRALIAN FASHION LAUREATE AWARD CEREMONY @ THE CUTAWAY


This exhibition opened today, Saturday 11 November, 2017 at the Art Gallery of NSW.

The exhibition is a panorama of Dutch society during an era of wealth, power and cultural influence with outstanding works by the great Dutch masters. The art of painting flourished like never before with subjects ranging from intense portraits and dramatic seascapes to scenes of domestic life and studies of fruit and flowers.

Drawn from the Rijksmuseum of the Netherlands, this exhibition has a rare painting by Johannes Vermeer and a room dedicated to one of the greatest minds in the history of art, Rembrandt Van Rijn. Continue reading REMBRANDT AND THE DUTCH GOLDEN AGE @ ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES


Featured image – Amanda Davies’ portrait of Pat Brassington.

The  Portia Geach Memorial Award is Australia’s most prestigious art prize for portraiture by women artists.

The Award was established by the will of the late Florence Kate Geach in memory of her sister, Portia Geach. The non-acquisitive award of $30,000 is awarded by the Trustee for the entry which is of the highest artistic merit, ‘…for the best portrait painted from life of some man or woman distinguished in Art, Letters, or the Sciences by any female artist resident in Australia during the twelve months preceding the close date for entries.’

Born in 1873 in Melbourne, Portia Geach studied with John Singer Sargent and Lawrence Alma-Tadema in London and was also a lifelong activist for women’s rights. She established the Housewives Progressive Association of New South Wales, The Housewives Magazine in 1933 and the Progressive Journal two years later to promote issues such as equal pay for women and the right to hold public office.

Visitors can vote in the People’s Choice Award and the winning artist will receive $1,000. The award is given by Heather & Hilary Macorison in memory of Winifred & Harry Macorison.


Tasmanian artist Amanda Davies has won the 2017 Portia Geach Memorial Award, with her painting Portrait of Pat Brassington.

Highly Commended artists are Effie Pryer Marieke Hardy, and Clare Thackway Bend.



Featured artwork. ‘Wishing Upon Dreams’ by Katherine Wood.

The latest thrilling exhibition at Traffic Jam Galleries features the glorious work of Katherine Wood, in a series of beach scenes highlighting her magnificent use of line, texture and composition.  The works are delicately yet strongly layered and textured.

Katherine Wood is originally from South Africa but she and her family now live on the Sunshine Coast.

Wood’s work can best be described as ‘abstract imaginings’ blending the divide between traditional landscape and contemporary abstraction.

Wood loves the ocean – in her works its deceptively calm presence and the sense of space at the beach is also revealed as a place to hope and dream for the future or, alternatively, to reflect on the past. Continue reading EBB AND FLOW : A NEW EXHIBITION BY KATHERINE WOOD @  TRAFFIC JAM GALLERIES 


Images by Ben Apfelbaum

For 13 years ART AND ABOUT has been a unique month long art fest for all Sydneysiders.  Now we can enjoy exciting outdoor work in odd places all year round.

City of Sydney will be supporting art in any corner of Sydney, at any time, including major projects, intimate exchanges, and thought-provoking exhibitions in unusual spaces throughout the city.

Images by Ben Apfelbaum

Our photographer, Ben Apfelbaum’s eye was taken by the recent installation on Observatory Hill.  For THE LAST RESORT  the rotunda was transformed by celebrated French-Albanian artist Anri Sala with a wonderful installation of sculpture and sound for the 33rd Kaldor Public Art Project.

Custom-built drums to give the listener a rhythmic, live response to a contemporary interpretation of a Mozart concerto. Set against the sights and sounds of the harbor below, the musical dialogue animates the relationship between sound, place, time and history.

To shape the intricate recorded soundscape for THE LAST RESORT, Sala has re-imagined Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto in A Major, a masterpiece of the European Enlightenment. Mozart’s score is upended, as if it were a message in a bottle carried from Europe across the ocean to Australia, affected by wind and waves.

Anri Sala’s works of film, sculpture and installation create poetic analogies that reflect on life and culture from different frames of experience. Past works have traversed European contexts, from his hometown, Tirana, Albania, to Germany and France where he has spent much of his adult life. His artworks often creatively pair image with sound, and explore the choreographic potential of musical instruments and their performers.

Images by Ben Apfelbaum

The project is presented by Kaldor Public Art Projects, a non-profit organisation that has created groundbreaking art projects in public spaces since 1969. It was co-commissioned with partners Esther Schipper (Berlin) and Marian Goodman Gallery (New York and Paris).

Next in ART AND ABOUT is Nick Cave: HEARD·SYD . An exuberant, surreal and explosive live performance on November 10th and 12th.

For more about ART AND ABOUT :

For more about THE LAST RESORT:




Artist Kristen Howarth is inviting art lovers to her first exhibition entitled FEARLESS.

This exhibition is a collection of my work in various shapes, sizes in acrylics and mixed media. The artworks have evolved during my journey to break through the fears that have held her back in life.

Kristen would love people to attend her exhibition and share in her journey. She sees fear as being the one thing that stops people  stops people from attempting things.  To step into the fear and try new things is to change the course and therefore the outcome but that can mean you need to get out of your comfort zone you need to be brave. Continue reading KRISTEN HOWARTH AND BREAKING THROUGH FEAR WITH ART


Featured photo- Edmund Capon, Danelle Bergstrom and Jack Thompson at the exhibition opening.

Edmund Capon, former Director of the Art Gallery Of New South Wales, attended the official opening of artist Danelle Bergstrom’s new exhibition ‘Vaga’ at the Arthouse Gallery, Darlinghurst held last Wednesday. Other luminaries who attended included acting legend, Jack Thompson.

Bergstrom won the 2007 Packing Room Prize at the Art Gallery Of New South Wales for her portrait of Thompson.

In her new collection Danelle personifies the land as a vessel for emotion. The paintings pictoralise her recent experiences in hill’s End and her time spent at her Finland residency. The artist’s Scandinavian seascapes evoke the dark, roaring energy of the ocean. Continue reading DANELLE BERGSTROM COLLECTION : VAGA @ ARTHOUSE GALLERY


The 21st ‘Coming Of Age’ annual Sculpture By The Sea has welcomed work from 104 sculptors from 15 countries around the world. Since its inception, 1272 sculptors have exhibited on the Bondi-Tamarama coastal walk. One of the sculptors, Orest Keywan, has exhibited every year since 1998.

At the launch of this year’s Sculpture By The Sea on Thursday 19th October at Marks Park a number of awards were handed out. The Aqualan Sculpture Award worth $60,000 was won by David Ball of Bowral for his sculpture Orb.  Helen  Lempriere’s   scholarships of $30,000 were presented to Hame Fasher of Oberon, Julie Gough of Hobart and Ron Robertson-Swann of Sydney. Continue reading SCULPTURE BY THE SEA : NOW IN ITS 21ST YEAR

Vermilion Art: Under the Same Moon

At the salon reading, mixed media on canvas by Yunn Ru

UNDER THE SAME MOON is a group exhibition from Yunn Ru, Ava Wang, Charlotte Lin, Chu Fan, Lin Ling, Man Chien

It is an exhibition of selected art works that highlight six international contemporary artists from different creative backgrounds. It  showcases lively and experimental works ranging from couture garment to artisan paper. It is a celebration of the rich diversity and authenticity of works across different media, all created under the same moon.

Curated by established fashion model and self-taught artist Yunn Ru Soo, UNDER THE SAME MOON features eclectic pieces drawn from the diverse and complementary fields of fashion and design. “Assembling a collection of works from people who don’t consider fine art to be their primary occupation will definitely throw a big question out there. We want this exhibition to provoke our viewers by challenging our thoughts on how society perceives the identity of an artist.”

The exhibition covers six emerging artists who are established in their existing careers. Ava Wang, a brand manager from Taiwan, showcases inspiring calligraphy touched by the evolution of time and its influence on the style of Chinese words. Lin Ling, a Hong Kong graphic designer shares her redemption of individuality through the art of jewelry-making. Whilst Charlotte Lin, a final year fine art student from UNSW reveals her surroundings through her own personal observations on one another.

Chu Fan, Man Chien, and Yunn Ru are connected by a shared interest in fashion and the visual fusion of creativity and reality. Coming from the same country, they prove that their artistic practice is not a fad, but the pursuit of personal redemption.
Chu Fan’s fascination with the idea of seeing the world in a grain of sand reflects his view on how the beauty of nature and the universe is often found in small details, much like his profession as a make-up artist.

Yunn Ru began painting as a way of dealing with loneliness and self-exploration during her nomadic period as an international fashion/commercial model. Her works shows a wildly imaginative range in storytelling through colors. Man Chien, from an industrial design background, brings art to life by enlivening garments to combine romantic sentiments with chic design.

This exhibition will include new acrylic series by both Chu Fan and Charlotte Lin; calligraphy and ink works by Ava Wang; a vibrant series of abstract paintings by Yunn Ru Soo; jewelry works by Lin Ling and haute couture art by Man Chien.

The show will be on view from Thursday 23 Nov until Saturday 23 Dec at Vermilion Art 5/16 Hickson Rd, Walsh Bay, 2205, NSW

Opening hours: 11am – 7pm  Wednesday to Saturday.

23 Nov / 6.30pm

For more about Vermilion Art: Under the Same Moon Exhibition, visit
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Founded by Doug and Greta Moran and family in 1988 for the celebration of Australia’s Bi-Centennial, the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize, believed to be the world’s most valuable portrait prize, has been held annually ever since. This year, the Moran Arts Foundation  received more than 1,130 entries, double that of the Archibald Prize.

The Moran Prize winner who received $150,000 was Tim Storrier for a portrait Lunar Savant which was a portrait of his friend and fellow artist, McLean Edwards. Ironically this painting did not make the Archibald cut.

For the first time the judges Greta Moran, Daniel Thomas and Wendy Sharpe gave a Highly Commended Award to Dagmar Cyrulla’s self portrait entitled I am Woman.

The proceedings were chaired by Doug’s son Peter Moran and veteran media personality Richard Moorecroft.

This free exhibition showcasing all thirty finalist  is on view at Juniper Hall, 250 Oxford Street, Paddington, almost diagonally opposite to Paddington Town Hall. Opening times are Thursdays to Sundays between 10am and 4pm until 17th December.

Also free Artists Talks are being every Sunday at 2pm at Juniper Hall throughout November and December.


Pics  by Ben Apfelbaum.



Set in the heart of Double Bay, Frances Keevil Gallery demonstrates, through its selection of artists, the variety, vitality and relevance of contemporary art.

Founded by art consultant and curator Frances Keevil and film and creative industries executive Lynn Westacott, the Gallery represents both established and emerging career artists, holding regular solo and mixed artist’ exhibitions and keeping a permanent stock room on rotational display.

A special empathy for figurative works – the painterly and sculptural – underlies a gallery ethos aimed at encouraging a deeper appreciation of the arts within the community.

The current exhibition showing at the Gallery is Sue Meyer’s ‘Off The Beaten Track’ which is on display till Sunday 29th October. There is also an exhibition online of recent sculptures by artist Lolek.

Images by Ben Apfelbaum.




This is an astonishing, vibrantly alive animated feature about Vincent van Gogh. It is fictional but uses real characters and incidents documented in Van Gogh’s letters.

This film represents the first entirely oil-painted animation feature film in history and has taken almost a decade to make. As written & directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, more than 100 talented artists, mainly from Poland and Greece, hand-painted every single frame, in oils, in the unmistakable style of the film’s celebrated subject, Vincent van Gogh.

At 12 frames per second and with a running time of just over 90 minutes, that’s 65,000 frames in all.

The film lives through van Gogh’s passion and art. A lot of the film is in thrilling colour but the flashbacks are portrayed in black and white which, while clearly augmented by an animator’s brush, are also obviously based on live-action footage. Some of the sequences are almost visual poetry, full of remarkable beauty. There are also striking sequences using shadows and/or reflections.

Ninety four of his paintings are featured in a form very close to the original, and a further thirty one paintings featured either substantially or partially. The detail is amazing – for example there is a cat walking across the bottom of the screen at one point then vanishing.

Sound effects include church bells, the clip clop of horses , startled crows cawing and rising from a field, the clink of a tea cup and so on.

Ochres, golds, cornflower blues, purples and reds resonate in the style of the artist’s most famous works.

Robert Gulaczyk as Vincent van Gogh leads a cast that includes Douglas Booth as Armand Roulin, Chris O’Dowd as Postman Roulin, Helen McCrory as Dr Gachet’s housekeeper and John Sessions as Pere Tanguy, van Gogh’s supplier of art materials. Jerome Flynn as Dr Gachet and the Poldark stars Eleanor Tomlinson and Aidan Turner are also featured.

The story is set in 1891, a year after van Gogh’s death, when Postman Roulin sends his son Armand to Paris to deliver a letter to the artist’s brother Theo. Armand finds that Theo has also died and continues his journey by tracking down various people who have sat for the artist or had other contact with him.

The film then becomes a detective story unearthing and examining the various conflicting accounts given by residents of Auvers-sur-Oise, the village where he suffered his tragic end, that Armand talks to.

In the Paris scenes there are no can cans in Montemarte (although we do see the gatherings with Toulouse-Lautrec, Bernard), no cheerful prostitutes, and there no hint of the rumours that van Gogh perhaps had an affair with the daughter of his physician, Dr Gachet.

Yes,  we see Vincent delivering the parcel of his cut off ear to his favourite whore.

The film also analyses the theory that Van Gogh was perhaps murdered by René Secrétan, a local 16 year-old who enjoyed ridiculing the rather reclusive artist.

Armand’s enquiries end up centring around the still-fascinating questions of where van Gogh’s gun came from, why he shot himself in the stomach and what happened to all his painting equipment.

Van Gogh’s paintings as an expression of his tortured soul changed people’s understanding  of what art could be. This film brings the great artist’s work richly to life. Try and stay right to the end for the ‘sketchbook’ at the end with the credits, to Don Mclean’s haunting, moving Vincent. 

Running time – roughly 90 minutes no interval

LOVING VINCENT screens at selected arthouse cinemas from November 2 2017.


Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age: masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum

Experience the first major exhibition in Sydney of the great Dutch painters of the 17th century, Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age: masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum at the Art Gallery of NSW.

Drawn from the Rijksmuseum, the renowned national collection of the Netherlands, the exhibition comprises 78 exceptional works of art. Immerse yourself in intense portraits, dramatic seascapes, tranquil scenes of domestic life and careful studies of fruit and flowers.

Highlights include a rare painting by Vermeer and a room dedicated to Rembrandt – one of the greatest minds in the history of art.

The exhibition forms part of the Sydney International Art Series 2017-2018, bringing the world’s most outstanding exhibitions exclusively to the Art Gallery or NSW and MCA, every summer.

Purchase a Sydney International Art Pass to see both exhibitions and save 20%:

For more information and tickets,  visit

From November 11.

For more about Rembrandt and the Dutch Golden Age: masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum, visit
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Traffic Jam Galleries : TJG Team Selection

Something for everyone with the current most exciting Traffic Jam Galleries exhibition which has just opened – a show curated from works selected by TJG team members Bianca, Jess, Rebecca and Somerset.

Running from the 5th – 26th of October, the exhibition features new works from artists including Andrew Grassi Kelaher, Claire Kirkup, Danielle McManus, Rebecca Pierce and Nigel Sense. I will concentrate mainly on the new works.

Andrew Grassi Kelaher’s works are rather surrealist, very striking, extremely controlled manicured landscapes with clouds and precisely placed trees, sheep, rocks and winding rolling roads.

Will Maguire ‘s spiky and Hugh McLachlan’s reflective, almost melting wonderful sculptures are included as are Carol Foster and Elizabeth Green’s marvellous paintings.

J Valenzula Didi is represented by three abstract, rigidly precisely placed paintings in a triptych work entitled Urban Symphony. It felt like there  were Geoffrey Smart references involved. The use of shadow and geometric line was wonderfully employed, and there was a hint of 3 dimensions in some of the two dimensional paintings.

Ember Fairbairn’s One More Flood was full of lines, dots and misty texture.

Rebecca Peirce’s explosive, colourful, thickly painted flower paintings leaped off the wall. A large, sensitive and passionate, possibly wistful  ‘Somerset Designated Driver’ portrait‘ was new as well as the bright, colourful Low Lying Cloud Over The Glass Mountains and a couple of works from her Simple Life series revealed her extensive range of styles and subjects.

Danielle McManus is represented by her latest adorable but enigmatic work Follow the White Rabbit– a young person in a white rabbit suit in a huge field of red poppies.

Nigel Sense’s ouevre is represented by some of his striking bold flower paintings , perhaps with a Margaret Preston influence?– there is a very strong use of line and colour and outline.

Mia Oatley is represented by two swirling seascapes, and a sleek intense portrait looming diagonally across the canvas ( Forest Woman) .

Both Jenny Green’s exciting sculptures and Elizabeth Green’ s seemingly delicate yet intense works are included.

Dean Reilly’s The Professional Polymath is a striking dreamlike Surrealist portrait of a suite wearing a head of flowers.

Edgar Schilter and Julie Hutchings both have a single work featured in this group show as does Katherine Wood.

The delicate, embroidered Nature Studies of Meredith Woolnough captivate and entrance. combining science and art.

The current TJG Team Selection exhibition runs at Traffic Jam Galleries until the 26th October 2017



Featured image – Baritone Teddy Tahu Rhodes by Yvonne East.

The Salon Des Refuses was initiated by the S.H.Ervin Gallery in 1992 in response to the large number of works entered into the Archibald Prize which were not selected for display in the main exhibition.

Each year the Salon Des Refuses is invited to go behind the scenes of the judging process for the Archibald Prize for Portraiture and the Wynne Prize for Landscape Painting and figure sculpture at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. The Salon selected 54 works that did not make the main exhibition and presented these works at an alternative exhibition at the S.H. Ervin.

This year’s Salon panel comprised James Dorahy, art advisor from the Michael Reid Galleries, Elizabeth Hastings, curator and author, Kevin Connor monograph writer, and James Watters, director of the S.H. Ervin Gallery. Continue reading SALON DES REFUSES 2017 @ S.H.ERVIN GALLERY

Traffic Jam Galleries : Black and White/ Works on Paper


It is a mix of works previously seen and new works by some of the favourite artists from the gallery’s stable..I will be concentrating on the new works rather than ones I have already reviewed. The set theme for the exhibition is Black and White and/or works on paper. There is a great variation in size , some taking up almost an entire wall ( eg Miriam Innes with her New York Meandering , full of incredible detail and thrusting diagonal lines of the staircases). Continue reading Traffic Jam Galleries : Black and White/ Works on Paper


Featured image – Camp Dog 2002-03.

Lena Yarinkura was born in 1961 and works in Ankabadbirri, a small coastal town in north-east Arnhem Land.

Lena first learned the technique of string bag weaving and pandanus basketry from her mother. In the early 1990’s Lena moved away from creating purely functional domestic objects out of pandanus fibre and started making sculptural forms that represent both the physical embodiment of ancestral beings and animals observed such as camp dogs, bandicoots, spiders, bush pigs and bush mice.

This exhibition is curated by Clothilde Bullen, Curator of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander collections and exhibitions.




Featured : Senne Mestrom ‘Soft Kiss’ 2011.

Drawn entirely from the Museum’s Collection, TODAY, TOMORROW, YESTERDAY considers the impact of the past and the influence of history on artistic practice today. From contemporary interpretations of ancestral stories to the continuing effects of early to mid twentieth century ideas, each room presents a different perspective on the history of the present.

The title and exhibition reference the circular timeless wonderment of TODAY, TOMORROW, YESTERDAY celebrating the different artists deep and ongoing interest in different social, political, cultural and aesthetics histories.

The exhibition is curated by MCA Senior Curator Natasha Bullock. The exhibition runs until 31 December, 2017.




Featured image – The Pretty Face Of Domesticity 2014 (c) Jenny Watson 

Jenny Watson is a leading Australian artist whose conceptual painting practice spans more than four decades. Curated by MCA Curator Anna Davis, this survey exhibition features works from the 1970’s to the present, including examples of Watson’s early realist paintings and drawings and a number of key series of works on fabric.

Inspired by both punk and feminism, she has travelled  widely since the 1970’s and utilises textiles collected on her travels as the surface of many of her paintings, which also often include collages materials  such as images  from magazines, horse’s hair, ribbons, bows and sequins.

Many of Watson’s works feature self portraits and altar egos, a cast of long haired women, horses, rock guitarists and cats who enact life’s ongoing psychodramas.

This exhibition is on until 2nd October, 2017 at the MCA.



Project Kollective Spaces first exhibition focuses on the cultural and environmental significance of trees. The PKS artists explore the complex human-tree relationship, and celebrate the everyday beauty of trees, by using photo media, film, installation, drawing and painting.

20th September – 1st October at the Bondi Pavilion Gallery.

For more about The Sky is Falling, visit
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A very captivating exhibition has invaded the Traffic Jam Galleries reshaped space with works by Jenny Green (INTERPLAY) and Rebecca Pierce ( THE SIMPLE LIFE) .Both are bright , bold ,vivid and entrancing . what is also exciting is seeing the contrast and range of styles produced by both artists.

First , considering Jenny Green’s exhibition INTERPLAY . From her studio in Sydney’s Northern Beaches Jenny Green creates her sculpture in bronze, steel & resins. Her work is represented in private, public & corporate collections, and has won a number of awards. Green exhibits at traffic jam galleries at Neutral Bay and in group exhibitions including with the Sculptors Society.

In 2015, Jenny was appointed to the Board of the National Art School..Her work is currently shortlisted in the Northern Beaches Art Prize. As displayed here, Green’s abstract sculptures of steel can be of strong ,coloured, dynamic ‘singing ‘ lines , full of energy and ‘eating’ space .They vary considerably in size – some of them are small, while others are large and free standing ( eg INTERPLAY 1 & 2 ) and have a pebbled floor , as if invoking a Zen garden.

Green’s bronze figurative sculptures ( eg Rapport , Hey There ) are semi abstract and often have a great feeling of weight and heaviness ,yet this is combined with a sense of pulsating energy and movement .Some sit or stand on plinths the bodies in discussion or thought.

Rebecca Pierce’s exhibition is entitled THE SIMPLE LIFE.Pierce primarily works with paint, inks and fine points on canvas and paper.Pierce has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions throughout Australia and overseas. She has been a finalist in major art prizes including the Glencore Percival Portrait Prize, the Mosman Art Prize, the Heysen Art Prize, the Fishers Ghost Art Prize, the Hawkesbury Art Prize, the Hunters Hill Art Prize, the ANL Maritime Art Prize and the Willoughby Art Prize. Rebecca’s work is represented in corporate and private collections in Australia and internationally.Ths particular exhibition includes some of her trademark bright, bursting thickly textured floral arrangements ( eg Country , Red Roses Blue Vase IX , Blow That Cone Full Salute ) but also features a very different change in style ( or two ).

There are some wonderful abstract multi textured,rather large ,swirling canvases painted with many layers of mirror resin , some also including straw attached , which are full of bold dynamic colour and energy . (eg The Simple Life C Dandelion) Flow parts 1-3 is like a triptych of a giant rolling wave . Major social issues are also commented on with for example The Motion of Transition diptych of paintings.There is perhaps a sense of unsettling un predictability and we see how Pierce interprets the human face and form (there is also a self portrait included) and the reading of the natural landscape around us and how these interweave.

A very striking exhibition.

Jenny Green’s Interplay and Rebecca Pierce’s The Simple Life run at the Traffic Jam Galleries 9 – 31 August 2017




Featured image – Dr Ella Dreyfus and her artwork, ‘Ich bin Jude’. Photos by Ben Apfelbaum.

During the Darlinghurst Theatre Company’s production of Kindertransport, Sydney artist and educator  Dr Ella Dreyfus is presenting selections from her latest exhibition Walking in Wiesbaden in the new Gallery Space at the theatre.

Dr Dreyfus’ artworks bring to life the names and identities of her German Jewish ancestors in the streets they walked and lived in.

Whilst undertaking an Artist-In-Residence residency at the Kunsthaus, Wiesbaden this year, she created a series of public art installations which act as contemporary memorials to those who perished in the Holocaust as well as acknowledging the lives of her father and uncle, Richard and George Dreyfus, who left on a Kindertransport ship, the SS Orama, arriving in Melbourne in 1939, where her composer Uncle still resides. Continue reading ARTWORKS ON KINDERTRANSPORT THEME ON DISPLAY @ THE ETERNITY PLAYHOUSE

Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes : Art Gallery Of New South Wales

Featured image – Archibald Prize winner Mitch Cairns  and wife Agatha Gothe-Snape in front of his winning portrait of his wife. All images by Ben Apfelbaum.

To the delight of Sydneysiders and I suspect the Board of Trustees there was the usual post Archibald and Wynne controversy.

Distinguished veteran John Olsen opined words to the effect that the winner of the Archibald Prize was not a portrait but a decorative Matisse like painting. A Herald letter writer said that she would no longer paint in the European tradition but would paint dot paintings.

David Gonski, the Director of the Board of Trustee, announced the Prize winners at midday last Friday with a huge media contingent present.

The Archibald Prize, worth $100,000, went to Sydney artist Mitch Cairns for his portrait of his artist-wife Agatha Gothe-Snape.

The Wynne Prize, worth $50,000, went to Betty Kuntiwa Pumani for ‘Antara’, her portrait of her homeland.

The  Sulman Prize, worth $40000, went to Joan Ross, for her painting, ‘Oh history, you lied to me.’

Jun Chen was highly commended for his portrait of former gallery owner Ray Hughes.

The  Young Archies finalists are on exhibition until 22nd October with the announcement of the winner taking place on 16th September.

The Archibald, Wynne and Sulman exhibitions are on display at the Art Gallery of New South Wales until the 22nd October.

The ANZ People’s Choice Announcement will take place on Wednesday 4th October.

The Salon-des- Refuges exhibition will be on display at the SH Ervin Gallery until Sunday 15th October.