Sunday, October 31, 2010

just quickly....

... as you might know I have been so busy of late I put the 'gone fishing' sign on the door so to speak at my last post!  Well yes...the fish are jumping... but not so much that I cant pop in here tonight and leave a quick hello. I found something I saved recently...and how ever did i track this I could not say... 

... from Jules at Joyful Studio a little something to savour from Louise Bourgeois.

"Art is a guarantee of sanity. That is the most important thing I have said." 
--Louise Bourgeois

and from Ocean of mind:

"A writer - and, I believe, generally all persons - must think that whatever happens to him or her is a resource. All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art."

— Jorge Luis Borges
•  29 October 2010

wishing everyone a lovely weekend and good creating!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

what's going on here?


things are 
really, really 
round here 
for a while if I dont 
get over to 
visit at your blog 
do forgive me...
I'm not far away 
and will be back!!!

... I might not 
post anything here 
for a bit either
so... at least
you'll know why! 

see you before too long!
S x

TED Prize - Wishes big enough to change the world

JR : Winner of the 2011 TED PRIZE - the title above is TED's slogan.

This story from the TED blog today just grabbed my attention ...with good reason if you wish to read on! Click on the link above to see the excellent TED video and read more!

Reached by telephone on Wednesday morning on a bus in Shanghai, where he was headed to work on a largely unauthorized photo-pasting project to draw attention to the city’s demolition of historic neighborhoods, J R said that he had learned of the prize only two weeks ago and that he had not yet had time to think of a wish.
But he said that it would undoubtedly involve his kind of guerrilla art, which he has been creating with the help of volunteers in slums in Brazil, Cambodia and Kenya — where the outsize photographs, printed on waterproof vinyl, doubled as new roofs for ramshackle houses. “I’m kind of stunned,” he said of the prize. “I’ve never applied for an award in my life and didn’t know that somebody had nominated me for this.”
Randy Kennedy of the New York Times got an interview with JR, winner of the 2011 TED Prize, for the TimesFrom the story:

I have rather quickly posted these images and links ... I realised I'd been looking at his work here and there for a while ... this was the first time the story came together for me. You're possibly better informed about this artist that I was ...his story seemed well worth sharing ... just in case!

  • WOMEN - project. After his first visit in 2007 JR comes back in the slum of Kibera in Nairobi (Kenya). He set up 2000 vinyl square meters on the rooftops figuring the portraits of the women who are living in. He pastes also a whol train with eyes to create an anamorphosis with the faces set ont the railway slope through the slum - january 2009

  • WOMEN - project. JR comes back in Cambodia (Phnom Penh) and in India (New-Delhi and Jaïpur) for pasting actions in the streets. In Jaïpur he pastes huge white and sticky stencils to catch the dust and the colors within the context of Holi fest. Then eyes and gazes are reaveled - march 2009

  • WOMEN - Rio di Janeiro exhibition. 4 video installations in the Casa França Brasil, including the China House one unbuild the past year in the Morro da Providência. Pastings on the Arcos de Lapa, the teatro Joao Caetano and the Salla Cecilia Mireiles. Free exhibition from the april 24th to the june 21st 2009

  • WOMEN - project. JR launches the "Casa Amarela" Cultural Center in the Morro da Providência who set up with the community. A photo exhibition by the kidz is presented. - april 2009

  • ARLES, Rencontres de la Photographie - participation to the symposium the tuesday 07 july at 12.00 am. Theme : JR and the Participativ Art.

  • Text: website -

    Text here from

    JR owns the biggest art gallery in the world. He exhibits freely in the streets of the world, catching the attention of people who are 
    not the museum visitors. His work mixes Art and Act, talks about commitment, freedom, identity and limit.
    After he found a camera in the Paris subway, he did a tour of European Street Art, tracking the people who communicate messages 
    via the walls. Then, he started to work on the vertical limits, watching the people and the passage of life from the forbidden undergrounds 
    and roofs of the capital.
    In 2006, he achieved Portrait of a generation, portraits of the suburban "thugs" that he posted, in huge formats, in the bourgeois districts 
    of Paris. This illegal project became "official" when the Paris City Hall wrapped its building with JR's photos.
    In 2007, with Marco, he did Face 2 Face, the biggest illegal photo exhibition ever. JR posted huge portraits of Israelis and Palestinians 
    face to face in eight Palestinian and Israeli cities, and on the both sides of the Security fence / Separation wall. The experts said it would 
    be impossible. Still, he did it.
    In 2008, he embarked for a long international trip for "Women", a project in which he underlines the dignity of women who are often the 
    targets of conflicts. Of course, it didn't change the world, but sometimes a single laugher in an unexpected place makes you dream that 
    it could.
    JR creates "Pervasive Art" that spreads uninvited on the buildings of the slums around Paris, on the walls in the Middle-East, on the 
    broken bridges in Africa or the favelas in Brazil. People who often live with the bare minimum discover something absolutely unnecessary.
     And they don't just see it, they make it. Some elderly women become models for a day; some kids turn artists for a week. In that Art 
    scene, there is no stage to separate the actors from the spectators.
    After these local exhibitions, the images are transported to London, New York, Berlin or Amsterdam where people interpret them in the
     light of their own personal experience.
    As he remains anonymous and doesn't explain his huge full frame portraits of people making faces, JR leaves the space empty for an 
    encounter between the subject/protagonist and the passer-by/interpreter.
    This is what JR is working on. Raising questions...
    JR currently works on 2 new projects: Wrinkles of the City which questions the memory of a city and its inhabitants and Unframed, 
    which reinterprets in huge formats photos from important photographers taken from the archives of museums.


    Tuesday, October 19, 2010

    a splendid surprise...

    Today was one of those astonishingly busy days when everything seemed to be happening at once... but
    despite the seeming madness of it all boxes were ticked and it was exceptionally social at the same time. Funny that!

    The day was very bright and sunny ... warmer and dryer than of late (oh how we've been collectively cherishing the unsually cool weather for this time of year) ! Starting with toast and coffee at the fav local cafe -  this photo's been posted before  - but the good old standard vegemite sourdough toast with coffee never goes astray!

    After this it was off to the Gardens (Brisbane Botanic Gardens) at Mt Coot-tha to meet firstly with the wonderful volunteer guide Bettina who offered to share some of her prized spots in the gardens to aid the search for some particular seedpods (of course) ... she was the perfect person to have asked! That tricky camera is not behaving again... that and the intensity of light + wearing sunglasses and not reading so well in them...perhaps the photos taken could have been better but do forgive!

    Bettina with banksia pods

    Kangaroo Paws

    wattle seedpods

    We made some excellent discoveries before parting company... and off to check books back into the Botanical Library, saying hello to some familiar faces in admin and making my way along to see the guys from the Seeds for Life program. There seemed to be lots of good news today ... or at least promising ideas being discussed. The new Restaurant/cafe is opened and the gardens are filling up with people coming for lunch and a stroll around! Spring is out...all round it was buzzy!!

    And the splendid surprise you ask?

    Out of the blue...

    blogger from Montreal

     the lovely Nathalie 

    had sent ....



    all the way from Canada

    4 of her gorgeous photographs mounted on quality watercolour postcards

    in homage to the seed...

    her tribute to the Postcards from the Blogosphere Mail Art show from July!!!!

    These blissful images 
    had to be photographed 
    tonight to post here
     to tell you all about it 
    so I could then 
    write to Nathalie 
    and say

    Fabulous Nathalie ...
    clever and wonderful you! 
    Thank You!!!!

    And you may appreciate that given my tendency to camera troubles I am completely enraptured with these images...  Just stunning!!!

    Ok ...Im going to finish with some images  took yesterday at home!  By the way Nathalie...if you guys are not too busy over there in Montreal ... you'd always be welcome here!

    from the garden

    ooh.... have forgotten the name of this ... it is quite delightful dont you think!

    Now Im posting these ones of my back verandah which quite caught my eye by surprise when I walked out there around 3pm yesterday with a new painting I wanted to photograph in the light... the shadows were so strong. The 4th image - the painting - is eerily connected to the first shot below.... or is this just me!

    the back verandah

    dint you just love that light

    it was way t bright to sit out there and paint yesterday!

    my latest painting (1 mtr sq) ... hanging on the wall of the back verandah

    Think its time for someone to visit the land of nod! 

    ps more photo from Nathalie's blog ...Ok... so she's a photographer who also paints and works as a graphic designer and I saw her graphic work some months ago and was so impressed ...Graphics for Science and all kinds of interesting genres... smart cookie she is! And I suspect she can really cook...Ive seen the photos at her blog!

    Monday, October 18, 2010

    Pablo Neruda's Houses

    Saturday afternoon driving along in the car listening to Radio National the weekly program 'Poetica' came on! After a trip to the Botanic Gardens at Mt Coot-tha, a wonderful long conversation with one of the librarians, and time enjoying the sunshine and fresh greens of this location following a week of wind and rain a mellow mood had descended already when I tuned into 'Poetica' and was soon was transported away by the day's story on Pablo Neruda... long a favorite of mine.

    One of a great many publications

    It was such a pleasure to hear a favourite being read on this program and learn more on where Neruda had lived and what had some inspired some key works and developments in his life. I have included this poem below. In my previous home going back a few years now I had written the first stanza of the work  'Poesia' or 'Poetry' above the picture rail when painting deep blue/greys in this section of wall. That had curiously brought a quiet presence to the room that inspirited it somehow!

    you cant read the text but you can maybe just see it above the picture rail!


    And it was at that age ... Poetry arrived
    in search of me. I don't know, I don't know where
    it came from, from winter or a river.
    I don't know how or when,
    no they were not voices, they were not
    words, nor silence,
    but from a street I was summoned,
    from the branches of night,
    abruptly from the others,
    among violent fires
    or returning alone,
    there I was without a face
    and it touched me.

    I did not know what to say, my mouth
    had no way
    with names,
    my eyes were blind,
    and something started in my soul,
    fever or forgotten wings,
    and I made my own way,
    that fire,
    and I wrote the first faint line,
    faint, without substance, pure
    pure wisdom
    of someone who knows nothing,
    and suddenly I saw
    the heavens
    and open,
    palpitating plantations,
    shadow perforated,
    with arrows, fire and flowers,
    the winding night, the universe.

    And I, infinitesimal being,
    drunk with the great starry
    likeness, image of
    felt myself a pure part
    of the abyss,
    I wheeled with the stars,
    my heart broke loose on the wind. 

    Pablo Neruda 

    More work by Neruda can be read through this site -

    Pablo Neruda's Home
    Isla the sea

    The names
    The rafters in Pablo Neruda's studio.
    (found here)

    About Pablo Neruda

    Pablo Neruda
    Pablo Neruda during a Library of Congress
    recoding session, June 20, 1966

    Pablo Neruda (1904-1973) held diplomatic posts in Asian and European countries. After joining the Communist Party, Neruda was elected to the Chilean Senate but was forced to live in exile in Mexico for several years. Eventually he established a permanent home on Isla Negra. In 1970 he was appointed as Chile's ambassador to France; in 1971 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

    Below is the link with text to the Saturday Program. You should be able to listen to the show for the next month... after that Im not sure. You can also click to see the images of one of the houses.

    Neruda's Houses

    Producer Greg Lewis with a portrait of Pablo Neruda at Isla Negra.
    Pablo Neruda's Houses
    View the image gallery
    A feature on Neruda's eccentric homes and the poetry he wrote there.
    Neruda's Houses is written and narrated by Brisbane author Greg Lewis. Greg looks at the eccentric houses the famous poet Pablo Neruda built in his native Chile: La Chascona, La Sebastiana and Isla Negra, as well as his childhood homes, and the houses he lived in while working as a diplomat in Burma in the 1920s and Spain during the civil war. We'll also hear Neruda's poems that were written in these residences or relate closely to them.
    Greg Lewis turned his hand to literary commentary and poetry after many years as a boxing writer. He's written for The Hardy Society Journal, Australian Reader and Speedpoets. Greg married his wife in Chile last year and took time out from his honeymoon to visit Neruda's houses, and gather the material for this program.
    Neruda's poems are read in Spanish and English by Simon Palomares.
    Sound engineers: Andrea Hensing and Tom Henry
    Production: Mike Ladd
    List of poems:
    Trans Gary Soto
    From The Poetry of Pablo Neruda Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
    Trans Alastair Reid
    From Isla Negra Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
    Every Day, Matilde
    Trans William O'Daly
    From The Sea and the Bells, Copper Canyon Press
    Port, this port of Valparaiso
    Trans William O'Daly
    From The Sea and the Bells, Copper Canyon Press
    Rangoon 1927
    Trans Alastair Reid
    From Isla Negra, Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
    I'm Explaining a Few Things
    Trans Nathaniel Tarn
    From Twentieth Century Latin American Poetry,
    University of Texas Press
    The Heights of Macchu Picchu, Part 6
    Trans Nathaniel Tarn
    From Twentieth Century Latin American Poetry,
    University of Texas Press

    a book written for children about the poet

    another poem for you...  an excerpt:

    Ode to the Dictionary 






    what a marvel

    to pronounce these plosive


    and further on,


    unfilled, awaiting ambrosia or oil

    and others,

    capsicum, caption, capture,

    comparison, capricorn,


    as slippery as smooth grapes,

    words exploding in the light

    like dormant seeds waiting

    in the vaults of vocabulary,

    alive again, and giving life:

    once again the heart distills them.

    Dictionary, you are not a

    tomb, sepulcher, grave

    tumulus, mausoleum,

    but guard and keeper,

    hidden fire,

    groves of rubies,

    living eternity

    of essence,

    depository of language.

    and a last more here:

    A manifesto for writing down the bones of the world.
    “It is good, at certain hours of the day and night, to look closely at the world of objects at rest. Wheels that have crossed long, dusty distances with their mineral and vegetable burdens, sacks from the coal bins, barrels, and baskets, handles and hafts for the carpenter’s tool chest. From them flow the contacts of man with the earth, like a text for all troubled lyricists. The used surfaces of things, the wear that the hands give to things, the air, tragic at times, pathetic at others, of such things—all lend a curious attactiveness to the reality of the world that should not be underprized.

    Friday, October 15, 2010

    look closely....

    what could this be?

    mmm... curious!

    I do like reading about those with funds to do so putting it towards something both inspiring and eco-future oriented!

    designed by Make Architects

    Bolton Council in the United Kingdom may soon see the construction of its first zero-carbon underground home. Designed by Make Architects for green enthusiast and British football star Gary Neville, the one-story, nearly 8,000 sq ft structure has been designed to be beautiful and functional while keeping energy consumption to a minimum. Text and Images from INHABITAT.COM - a lively e-mag exploring Design that will save the world!


    Underground Home, Bolton Eco Home, Make Architects, Neville Eco Home, Gary Neville Green House, Gary Neville Teletubby house, Gary Neville Eco House, Zero Energy House, Zero Carbon House, Carbon Neutral House, Earth Berm House, Underground Eco House, Neville Underground green home, green building, green home
    proposed site

    Far from classification as a drab bunker, this thoughtful design not only considers its eco-impact, but keeps in tune with the tranquil and expansive meadows and hillsides which surround it. The positioning and orientation of the property was carefully thought out, building materials will be locally sourced, and traditional building methods will be used where possible. A ground source heat pump will provide the heating and photovoltaic panels and an on-site wind turbine will generate renewable energy.
    Almost all of the home will be constructed into the hillside, which, according to the design firm, “enables the surrounding moorland to seamlessly flow across the roof.” The layout takes the form of a flower, with the “petals” hosting areas to eat, relax, entertain, work and play, all around a central kitchen. When lit at night, the house will leave a distinctive, glowing floral impression on the darkened landscape. Amusingly, some have compared the structure to the famed Teletubby house, which admittedly shares some aesthetic value. However, the architects at Make contend their inspirartion arose from Skara Brae, a neolithic underground settlement in Orkney.

    text and images:

    Read more: Gary Neville's Underground Eco Home Blends Into the Earth | Inhabitat - Green Design Will Save the World 

    I have added the images below from the cited inspiration for this architecture as I had the great pleasure of visiting this site on the Orkney Islands in 1986. A few of us hired old push bikes and went on a somewhat rainy hike across hill and dale to see what was a most amazing neolithic underground settlement. I did drawings of this place and then of artifacts found here that were housed in the local museum back in the village (if my memory serves me well!).
    I found Skara Brae utterly enchanting and could not stop imagining what it would have been like to live here for a longtime afterwards. So very sculptural ... the grass and shape of the earth around the rock walled remains was quite voluptuous in appearance!
     The design above is perhaps missing some of that quality.... still interesting find this morning from Inhabitat.

    File:Orkney Skara Brae.jpg
    from Wikipedia: Skara Brae

     These images found here at an article on the Prehistoric village of Skara Brae at Phenomenica.

    Off to work now...

    Wednesday, October 13, 2010

    in the studio...

    A peek from the studio ... some quick close ups / sections from recent work...

    acrylic and ink on linen

    acrylic on linen

    working with iron oxide pigment

    iron oxide and acrylic on wood

    close up

    acrylic on canvas

    Thought it would be worth musing on some things happening in the studio ... loving the iron oxide pigment! The hours are passing as I work with materials and ideas ... shifting them around! 
    Its good to step back... get some thoughts from others perhaps!
    Its late... better go,