Friday, December 10, 2010

Myrtle St Studio... visit while you have a chance!

I'm just back from a lovely visit to Jay Dee Dearness at Myrtle St Studio,  The Grange  - where the most delightful show - Penny Black Project - is happening right now. You have just this Saturday, December 11th  to see the show. It's such a wonderful venue and Jay Dee is a delightful host. See below where I have taken text from Jay Dee's notes all about this show for you to read about the people behind the project. Visit

I love postage stamps so if you do too... see what these artists have come up with. I bought a zine which has all the artists represented in the show... great work all!

Jay Dee Dearness

E J Zyla - from her blog Real Pale Red

up close

E J Zyla is one of the artists featured in this current show - visit  for some unknown reason the link mechanism isn't working... (you'll have to copy and paste...sorry!)

 This project was initiated by Joanna Coltman (of ‘Little’ fame) last year in August as a prompt for time-poor creative souls to increase their artistic output in a small but gradual way…  In her own words, ‘Start small by joining the PENNY BLACK PROJECT. Six projects, six weeks apart. Create a postage stamp for art.’
And so, a set of 6 projects was born!  Each based around a different kind of postage stamp with the following parameters for the artistic work - the denomination (what the stamp was worth), a feature colour and the stamp size/dimensions.  A little info on each of the six stamps was also supplied for some historical background with the results to be compiled into a zine once the project was finalised.
Well, the zine is literally hot off the press and we are now counting down to next Saturday (the 4th of December) when they will go on sale to the public!  The original artwork provided by eight of the artists for the zine will be displayed in an accompanying exhibition with the zine launch (some of which is also for sale!) and I advise getting in early if you are interested in purchasing (they make excellent well-priced Xmas gifts).
As we lead up to the exhibition opening, I’ll be providing a little more information on each of the artists so please keep an eye on the blog in the next couple of days if you would like to know more!

Vanessa Berry and Simon Yates

Vanessa Berry and Simon Yates are quite well-known in art circles – Vanessa is a prolific zinester and Simons’ work has graced many an exhibition space in Sydney (and elsewhere)…  Keeping it short and sweet, here are some links which will further your education on the two:
Vanessa Berry on ZineWiki, at Vanessa Berry World, in the MCA Sydney and in conversation.
Simon Yates with some current work, at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art and something from the Adelaide Festival.

Michelle from

See more of Michelle's work here at her website

Joy Serwylo

Joy Serwylo

Joy Serwylo

Joy Serwylo

Georgi Lewis

Manuela Dobelin

and to finish off....

The Mauritius Blue is one of the rarest postage stamps in the world. Issued in September 1847 the deep blue two pence stamp along with an orange-red one penny stamp, were the first stamps of the British Empire to be produced outside of Great Britain, Five hundred of each value were printing from a single plate. The stamps are highly prized by collectors because of their rarity, their early dates and their primitive character. An invitation to a ball hosted by the Governor of Mauritius's' wife that bears both the orange-red one penny and the deep blue two pence stamps was sold at a 1993 auction for 5,750,000 Swiss francs (about $4,000,000).
- from the penny black project blog feb 20th 2010.

Penny Black

The Penny Black went on sale in England on 1 May 1840 and is widely recognised as the world’s first postage stamp. The Penny Black revolutionised the postal service by having postage paid by the sender rather than the recipient on delivery. Over 68 million Penny Black stamps were issued. The stamp depicts a portrait of Queen Victoria on a background of finely engraved engine turnings. The two upper corners contain star like designs and the lower corners contain letters designating the position of the stamp on the printed sheet. Sheets consisted of 240 stamps in 12 columns and 20 rows. AA designated the first stamp on the top left, TL for the last stamp on the bottom right. Stamps were printed on unperforated sheets and were then cut from the sheet by hand. The Penny Black was in use for only little over a year as the red cancellation stamp was hard to see over the black ink and stamps were being cleaned and re-used.


Lisa said...

Great post! thanks for sharing this. Love the story behind Penny Black and the idea of starting small. Inspiring.

Sophie Munns said...

Thanks Lisa,
it was great doing this post after I'd seen the show because I was able to appreciate the depth of work behind these small works... it was a really interesting project and delightfully carried out!
thanks for popping in!

Printed Material said...

What an absolutely magic idea! I love the idea of this project. I'm going back to look at all the links again in detail. I might add a note about this on my next blog post if I may and link back to your post. Would that be OK? You have an unerring knack of producing fab posts.There is no way I could get from the UK to Aus to see this but you've brought it to me! Thank you. Lesley

Sophie Munns said...

It is a lovely idea Lesley!
Go ahead and link to it... the whole concept is worth people reading about and the end result was just great!
Very glad you enjoyed it,
thanks for warm comments....

dosfishes said...

Marvelous work, especially the 3-D versions, wow. Thanks for sharing. xox Corrine

nathalie et cetera said...

Hi Sophie. Great post indeed, lovely images!
I have something for you on my blog today... if you have time.

Sophie Munns said...

Hi Corinne,
Lovely to have you pop in... glad you enjoyed these works!

Hi Nathalie,
Good to hear from you...
I just looked a the the challenge... will be making up some answers - she says laughingly!

Jay Dee said...

Hi Sophie! Thanks so much for your lovely words on the Project and MSS - really appreciated!! And nice to see so many people enjoying it online too :) xxoo Jay Dee

Sophie Munns said...

Hi Jay Dee,
I was so engrossed after posting on this...its really pulled me in... and Im glad I have my little zine in my studio to appreciate.
You get better and I shall have to add more of your doing here for people in the new year!
So great to see you the other day...and the wonderful Myrtle St Studio!
merry Xmas!
S xoxo