Monday, December 31, 2018

Goodbye 2018

There are several #bestnine apps designed for Instagram wherein your most popular nine posts for the year are gathered together and displayed in grid form. I decided to give it a try, and, as this is the last day of the year, thought I’d share the results here.

My nine for 2018 were not chosen by a robot, however, but by me. Whether these are actually my best nine is subjective, but they’re fairly indicative of where the work is right now and where it’s potentially heading from here. 

Enjoy the final hours of 2018, everyone. I have a feeling that 2019 is going to be a fantastic year!

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Prelude and Lookout

Prelude, acrylic on linen 40.5 x 30.5 cm (progress view). Photo credit: Tim Gresham

Prelude, pictured above, is part of a growing body of work, collectively titled Back Story. This and Lookout, also featured in this post, were started back in April, and were the first and second paintings undertaken for the new series. In this year's avalanche of activities, however, I never got around to posting them here, and have barely managed to squeeze them in now, just as 2018 is nearing its end.

Prelude was also the basis for the eponymous linocut I created for IMPRESSIONS 2018, the Australian Print Workshop's biennial fundraiser, and Lookout appears on my 2018 Christmas card.

The painting component of Back Story was placed on hold when I undertook a term as Artist-in Residence at Melbourne Athenaeum Library as part of Melbourne Rare Book Week in July. During the residency I worked on several projects, including a suite of linocuts inspired by the women in Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein, and continued to develop them after the residency had ended. These too are part of Back Story.

Now that carving of the linocuts is near completion, my energies are predominantly concentrated on the paintings that are the backbone of Back Story. A series of 20 is initially planned, each measuring 40.5 x 30.5 cm. These will be the forerunners of larger works.

Directly below are selected progress views of Prelude. (Note the transition from warm to cool greys).

Directly below: Lookout, followed by earlier developmental views.

Lookout, acrylic on linen 40.5 x 30.5 cm (progress view). Photo credit: Tim Gresham

Saturday, December 29, 2018


Guide (work in progress), acrylic on linen 40.5 x 30.5 cm. Photo credit: Tim Gresham

A recent work, near completion, followed by a series of progress views.

In the background (above centre) is Sybil, another work in this ongoing series. For a closer look at Sybil, go HERE.

Monday, December 24, 2018

Compliments of the Season

On the night before Christmas, all is calm, all is bright. Not a creature is stirring, not even in my studio.

Entering into the Yuletide spirit, Alice has decided not to fell the Christmas tree after all.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and nothing but the best for the coming year.   

Thursday, December 20, 2018

DRAWING STRENGTH - final weeks

Pictured top: pages from a recent sketchbook with ideas for future works mapped out. The centre drawing is the basis for one of the paintings I’m working on at present.

Meanwhile, the sketchbook is currently part of DRAWING STRENGTH, a visionary show curated by Jo Lane that celebrates the art of drawing in its myriad shapes and forms.

Now in its final weeks, DRAWING STRENGTH can be seen at the Barn Gallery, Montsalvat until January 6, 2019. Afterwards, a stroll around Montsalvat’s magnificent grounds is also highly recommended, especially if you’re seeking respite from the Silly Season that’s currently upon us.

Sunday, December 16, 2018


Sybil, acrylic on linen, 40.5 x 30.5 cm (work in progress). Photo credit: Tim Gresham 

With so much happening in recent weeks, I've been somewhat remiss about posting updates from my own studio.

Pictured top is Sybil, one of several works currently in development for an expansive project with the umbrella title Back Story.

The initial studies for Back Story were created in 2017, many of them during a residency at The Art Vault. The subsequent intrusion of other projects, however, made it virtually impossible to develop the imagery with any real consistency. The series, which will comprise paintings, prints, drawings and artist books, is now well and truly underway and will be my primary focus for the foreseeable future.

The following photos, snapped in my Ballarat studio, show Sybil in key stages of its development.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Some recent events

The Goldfields Printmakers end of year meeting in Kittelty's at the Art Gallery of Ballarat.
Left: GP Treasurer, Anne Langdon, centre: James Pasakos; far right: Loris Button. 

On Saturday, 1 December, the Goldfields Printmakers held their final meeting for 2018 over an early pre-Christmas brunch at Kittelty's, the Art Gallery of Ballarat's splendid cafe.

After our meeting, the Goldfields Printmakers visited the Arts Academy, where we viewed
  Encounter, our portfolio of prints exhibited in the Open Folio section of IMPACT 10  

In recent weeks, GP founder James Pasakos and GP member Loris Button returned from IMPACT 10, the international print conference in Santander, Spain. Our group exhibited in the Open Folio section and some members, including James and Loris, also held major shows. Other members, including myself, participated in group exhibitions - in my case, Thinking of Place ll.

The meeting was a timely opportunity to share the news of the acquisition of my artist book Leaves of Absence by the National Gallery of Australia. The first archival pigment prints I ever made were for Not Born Digital, the Goldfields Printmakers project created for IMPACT 9 in Hangzhou, China in 2015. They sowed the seeds for a completely new direction in my work that over the following two years culminated in Leaves of Absence and, more recently, the archival pigment print Bell Jar, 2018. (See following image).

Future Goldfields Printmakers shows will be announced in the New Year, once venues and dates have been confirmed.

At Tacit Galleries with my archival pigment print, Bell Jar, inspired by Sylvia Plath's semi-
autobiographical novel, The Bell Jar. Photo credit: Shane Jones.

Blarney Books and Art's tenth annual Biblio Art Prize exhibition recently travelled from its home in Port Fairy to Tacit Galleries in Collingwood, where it continues until Sunday, 16 December. Two of my works, Bell Jar, an archival pigment print, and Progeny, a unique artist book, are finalists in this year's Biblio.

The photos directly above and below were taken at Tacit Galleries on opening night, Wednesday 5 December.

An installation view of my one-of-a-kind artist book Progeny, currently at Tacit Galleries as part of Biblio Art Prize 2018.
Progeny, which was highly commended, takes Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein as its point of departure.

In other recent news, on Friday, December 7, Shane Jones and I attended the Australian Print Workshop Artist's Party, thrown by the APW as a thank you to all the artists who donated print editions to IMPRESSIONS 2018, its biennial fundraising exhibition.

As in previous years, we were treated to some memorable musical interludes. Guitar duo Graeme Drendel and Rick Amor were a marvellous 'warm-up' act to the fabulous Press Gang, comprising Jazmina Cininas, Julie Forrester, Simon White, Martin King, Adrian Kellett and Graeme Drendel. Printmaking luminaries, all of them, and damned fine musicians too.

L-R: APW Director Anne Virgo, Rick Amor, Martin King and Graeme Drendel

The legendary Press Gang, from L-R: Jazmina Cininas, Simon White, Julie Forrester, Adrian Kellett, Martin King
 and Graeme Drendel

As if this weren't enough, there were also prizes. I never win door prizes, raffles and suchlike, so couldn't have been more surprised when my name was one of those drawn from a hat. I won a linocut 'hamper' that included a lino block of the exact size I'm using for a current project, a tube of Charbonnel (my favourite ink), a baren and a fine set of linocut tools. Coincidentally, Shane won an identical prize. We're both feeling rather chuffed.

Directly below are just some of the many prints on view in IMPRESSIONS 2018. My linocut, Prelude, is on the bottom row, centre.

For further details of IMPRESSIONS 2018, including a complete list of participating artists, go HERE.

The show continues to 16 February, 2019. To check the APW's hours over the Christmas break, go HERE.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018


Shane Jones and I each have an artwork and sketchbook in the group show DRAWING STRENGTH in the Barn Gallery at Montsalvat Arts Centre. We’re delighted with curator Jo Lane’s placement of our drawings, in a charming alcove flanking an oversized fireplace. Despite being part of the main gallery, the area feels quite self-contained, as if we are in our very own room. My concertina format sketchbook sits in front of the fireplace. Shane’s book, opened in the view below to sketches of our cat Alice, is grouped with other sketchbooks at the opposite end of the gallery.

DRAWING STRENGTH runs from November 17, 2018 - January 6, 2019.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018


Prelude (2018, linocut with chine-collé, 20 x 15 cm, edition: 20, printed by Simon White) is my contribution to IMPRESSIONS 2018, the Australian Print Workshop’s biennial fundraising exhibition.

It’s a great show, arguably their best yet, and an absolute must for lovers of print.

IMPRESSIONS 2018 artists include: Greg Alexander, Penny Algar, Rick Amor, Brook Andrew, Stephen Armstrong, Rosalind Atkins, Susan Baran, Elizabeth Barnett, Alexis Beckett, Martin Bell, Kathy Boyle, Matthew Broughton, Peter Brown, Rob Brown, Peter Burgess, Kate Butler, Violeta Capovska, Lauren Carter, Raymond Carter, Jon Cattapan, Civil, Peter D Cole, Dianne Colk, Fabiana Comas, Timothy Cook, Warren Cooke, Brendan Cooper, Marisa Corral, Vicki Couzens, Beth Croce, Suzanne Danaher, Aleks Danko, Yvonne Day, Ex De Medici, David De Roach, Chris De Rosa, Clive Dickson, Louise Donovan, Graeme Drendel, Lesley Duxbury, Peter Ellis, Farimah Eshraghi, Kasia Fabijanska, Michael Fitzgerald, Angela Foley, Julie Forrester, Graham Fransella, Alex Game, Zoe Geyer, Shaun Gladwell, Janet Goldman, Kate Gorringe-Smith, Kaye Green, Andrew Gunnell, Gracia Haby &, Louise Jennison, Fred Hagstrom, Liam Haley, Richard Harding, Vicki Harman, Greg Harrison, Anton Hasell, Katherine Hattam, Jarmila Hava, Carolyn Hawkins, Euan Heng, Judy Holding, Alex Hotchin, Kate Hudson, Kyoko Imazu, Chris Ingham, Callum Jackson, Robyn Jackson, Georgia Janetzki, Shane Jones, Gina Kalabishis, Andrew Keall, Roslyn Kean, William Kelly, Hyun-Ju Kim, Luke Duncan King, Martin King, Jenny Kitchener, Barbie Kjar, Deborah Klein, Hertha Kluge-Pott, Helen Kocis-Edwards, Damon Kowarsky, Tim Lane, Jo Lankester, Georgia Laughton, Christine Lawry, Libby Letcher, Bruno Leti, Kevin Lincoln, Sorcha Mackenzie, Nina Magee, Margaret Manchee, Harley Manifold, Marion Manifold, Jennifer Marshall, Marie Mason, Terry Matassoni, George Matoulas, Malini Maunsell, Tommy May, Annalise Mayer, Janice McBride, David McCall, Stephen McCarthy, John McClumpha, Sarah McConnell, Danni McGrath, Laith McGregor, Paula McLoughlin, Justin McShane, Robert Mihajlovski, Lewis Miller, Louise Minahan, Allan Mitelman, Simon Moore, Hannah Murray, Janice Murray, Tom Nicholson, Liz Norris, Chris O’doherty, (Aka Reg Mombassa), Peter O’doherty, Emmet O’dwyer, Glenda Orr, Allison Orton, Laura Osborne, Jan Palethorpe, Margaret Parker, Larry Parkinson, Jon Paton, Patricia Piccinini, Kate Piekutowski, Brian Pieper, Catherine Pilgrim, Jaime Powell, Jutta Pryor, Stephanie Rampton, Julia Reed, Michael Rigg, Lisa Roet, Jennifer Rogers, Georgina Ross, Caroline Rothwell, Kate Ryan, Gwen Scott, Marianne Sebetti, Jan Senbergs, Simon Sherrin, Julia Silvester, Andrew Sinclair, Melissa Smith, Jennifer Smyth, Anne Spudvilas, Ruth Stanton, Anne Starling, Lisa Stebbing, Mervyn Street, Deb Tate, Deb Taylor, Andrew Taylor, Georgia Thorpe, Gera Tonge, Wayne Viney, Anne Virgo, Susan Wald, Deborah Walker, Thornton Walker, Lee Ward, Judy Watson, Louise Weaver, Peter Wegner, Sophie Westerman, Simon White, John Wolseley, Amanda Woodmansey, Chiara Zeta, and Kate Zizys.

Australian Print Workshop Gallery
210 Gertrude Street,
Fitzroy, Vic.

Gallery hours: 10 - 5 Tuesday to Saturday

The exhibition runs to 16 February 2019

Monday, November 19, 2018

Acquisition by National Gallery of Australia

Leaves of Absence, 2017, unbound artist book
31 archival pigment prints in Solander box
32.5 (H) x 25.5 (W) x 4 cm (D) edition: 10 plus one artist proof

In the midst of an exceptionally hectic period, I've received some marvellous news. My artist book LEAVES OF ABSENCE has been acquired for the permanent collection of the National Gallery of Australia.

For additional information and page views, visit Moth Woman Press HERE.

Page view from Leaves of Absence

Wednesday, November 14, 2018


Red Comb #2 (2007) based on a detail from my painting 8 Women (2005) wool and cotton, 15 x 16 cm
Woven by Cheryl Thornton 

A PASSION FOR TAPESTRY, which opened last night at the Australian Tapestry Workshop, comprises 18 small tapestries from the private collection of Tuppy Cole, all of them acquired from the ATW. The exhibition includes Red Comb #1, woven by Rebecca Moulton (fourth image below). For a clearer view of Red Comb #1 sans reflections, go HERE.

Revisiting Red Comb #2, woven by Cheryl Thornton

An unexpected surprise was the accompanying exhibition of tapestries from the workshop’s collection, including Red Comb #2, woven by ATW master weaver Cheryl Thornton (pictured top). I was thrilled to see this little gem again. I admire Cheryl’s work enormously and it’s well represented in both shows.

L-R: Cheryl Thornton and I outside the Australian Tapestry Workshop in 2007

Pictured with Red Comb #1, woven by Rebecca Moulton

The red comb tapestries were commissioned by the ATW in 2007 and are based on individual panels from my multi-panelled painting 8 Women (2005). In the intervening years, life has come to imitate art. My own locks are now the same shade as the intricately woven hair in both tapestries.

As the following photos will hopefully attest, a visit to the Australian Tapestry Workshop is highly recommended.

Opening address by Antonia Syme, Director of the Australian Tapestry Workshop. On the right (holding the bouquet of
flowers) is tapestry collector Tuppy Cole

Centre, left: ATW Director Antonia Syme, centre. Far right: ATW weaver Chris Cochius with Shane Jones

Photo credit for Red Comb #2: Viki Petherbridge. The photos of me (taken on an angle to avoid reflections) are by Shane Jones.

The exhibitions continue to 1 February, 2019.

Australian Tapestry Workshop
262 - 266 Park Street,
South Melbourne VIC 3205

Gallery hours: Tuesday - Friday, 10am - 5pm

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Moth Women land at The Lost Ones Contemporary Art Gallery

It's just occurred to me that I'm involved in no less than four group shows opening this week. (The others are at the Australian Tapestry Workshop, Montasalvat Arts Centre and the Australian Print Workshop).

I'm particularly excited to be part of Buy Art: Buy Local, opening on Thursday night, 15 November, at the Lost Ones Contemporary Art Gallery in Ballarat. I have eleven works in the show, all of them featuring the masked moth women that have been a huge part of my personal mythology for several years, inspiring fairy tales, prints, paintings, drawings, zines and artist books.

The hand-painted miniature plaster masks pictured above have seldom been exhibited. I couldn't be more delighted that their return appearance is in this superb gallery, and in such fine company. For me, the icing on the cake is to be regarded as a local artist in this town I've come to call home.

A selection of linocuts, including these, are also part of the show:

Birthana cleis Moth Mask, 2009, hand coloured linocut, 15 x 15 cm, ed. 30

Scoliocma bioclora Moth Mask, 2009, hand coloured linocut, 15 x 15 cm, ed. 30

Agathia pisina Moth Mask, 2009, hand coloured linocut, 15 x 15 cm, ed. 30

Thalaina macfarlandi Moth Mask, 2009, hand coloured linocut, 15 x 15 cm, ed. 30

The following is from the gallery's latest newsletter:

Buy Art : Buy Local is a celebration of the energies, efforts and activities of practising artists in the Ballarat region. 
A curated group of artists have been invited to show their works, with a focus on pieces that can be purchased, gifted or collected. 

The Lost Ones Contemporary Art Gallery firmly believes in the importance of financial reward for the production of quality artwork. Without creative thinking, or art production, we are lost as a society. Without valuing the energies and efforts that creative people place into their artworks, we devalue ourselves.
We welcome the chance to celebrate the talents and skills of Ballarat’s fine artists, and we also welcome the opportunity for others to invest, share and give art to others. Art is not an elite sport. 
Artists participating in the Buy Art : Buy Local exhibition include: Kim Anderson , Tiffany Titshall, Deborah Klein, Deb Weston, Kate Wise, Jon Paley, Tas Wansbrough, Pauline O’Shannessy-Dowling, Alec Robinson, Claire Blake and Lisa Anderson

Photo credit for all images: Tim Gresham.

Buy Art: Buy Local
The Lost Ones Contemporary Art Gallery
14 Camp Street
Ballarat Central 3350

Join us for a celebratory drink on Opening Night, Thursday, 15 November, from 6 - 8 pm

The exhibition runs from 14 November - 23 December