Saturday 4 September 2010 – Exhibition instead

We were going to the opening of Julie McCarron-Benson’s Exhibition Solo 2010 at the Tuggeranong Arts Centre at 3 o’clock.

2nd September—20th September 2010
Monday to Friday 9-5, Sat & Sun 1-4
Tuggeranong Arts Centre Gallery

137 Reed Street, Greenway 6293 1443

I thought we could do the Tuggeranong Town Centre walk beforehand. That was before all the severe weather alerts on the radio.

I had visions of donning my waterproof poncho and persevering, until I realised that it really was severe weather – winds of 70 kph and such heavy rain that even driving was going to be a drama. Our walk was abandoned in favour of a gentle stroll round a gallery.

As I’d left plenty of time to look for parking, we arrived early and wandered into the reception area. From the window I could see a relative of my favourite Canberra public art work, Dinornis maximus. What follow are bleary shots because of the bleary day, and because I took them through a rain-streaked window using the maximum zoom on my camera.

The Angel Wings sculpture, Tuggeranong

The Angel Wings sculpture, Tuggeranong

Phil Price, Angel Wings, 2008
Wind activated kinetic sculpture, heat cured epoxy glass, carbon fibre and steel.
Lake Tuggeranong foreshore, cnr of Soward Way & Drakeford Drive
Angel Wings has been described by New Zealand sculptor, Phil Price as a celebration of being alive. “It brings together the enjoyment of being outside in the environment, movement and colour – all the simple things,” he says. The aerodynamic wings move in response to the wind. The 10 metre tall sculpture uses fully-sealed rolling bearing systems designed for longevity and environmental resilience.

artsACT public art database

More from the windows of the Tuggeranong Arts Centre:

Lake Tuggeranong with fish sculpture inset

Panorama: Lake Tuggeranong with fish sculpture inset

This path beside Lake Tuggeranong is where our walk would have started. I was taken with the fish in the tree, not realising that

  1. it was one of a pair, and
  2. it was a weathervane.

Andrew Townsend
[he was involved in the Narrabundah sculpture too]
We Are Fishes, 1997
Galvanised Steel
Cnr Reed and Cowlishaw Streets
A pair of wind vanes in the shape of fish appear to swim through the air between the Tuggeranong Arts Centre and Lake Tuggeranong. One fish is cast black patinated aluminium, the other hollow form copper sheet with green patination. The work reflects life in the adjacent lake and plays on the nautical architecture of the Arts Centre building.

artsACT public art database

For the exhibition opening, there was singing:

Tony Haley singing at the exhibition opening

Tony Haley

With steadier hands, I could have taken better pictures of Tony Haley. The one above is a composite. Have a look at his website for a better indication, including song clips and contact info. Tony featured at the American Music Quiz at the Italo-Australian Club on 4 July. (I was on Julie’s table. We came second.) He specialises in 50s music: “nothing after 1970”. I admire his easy, flexible baritone voice and his engaging stage presence.

That said, my favourite period of popular music starts just before 1970. It’s startling to find that I know all the words of all the songs Tony sings. The radio was always playing at home in the 50s, and those were the very songs it played. Songs used to stay at the top of the Hit Parade for years back then.

Julie spoke about working towards the exhibition:

Julie

Julie

It’s been a rough year for her in many ways, but she remains wry, witty and exuberant. Her paintings are, too.

I’m still miffed that I didn’t find a way of getting the four or five doors in my garage out and over to Julie’s place so she could use them for the exhibition. She’s now found a source of new doors which are light and manageable, so my doors are never going to become works of art.

Two paintings: Awe (Genesis 1:8) and Despair (River of Tears)

Awe (Genesis 1:8) and Despair (River of Tears)

We’d had a quick look at the exhibition before the opening festivities, but we went back for a longer look. These photos are just a vague idea. There are better ones on Julie’s website, and for the local reader: the exhibition still has a week to run.

Two paintings: Happiness (cavorting with Books) and Loneliness (lunch on a black sunday)

Happiness (cavorting with Books) and Loneliness (lunch on a black sunday)

I particularly enjoyed the two above. “Cavorting” was the name of Julie’s last exhibition, opened on International Women’s Day this year. I didn’t get to the opening, unfortunately, but I loved all the cavorting women, and Julie’s explanation. A group of women was having a good time in a public place and she overheard a man say disapprovingly, “Look at those women cavorting”. What an excellent response she made!

About the lunch picture: Julie told me it was all very well working in pasta, but the cats kept eating bits of it. (Julie is not a cat person, but currently finds herself in charge of three substantial foster-cats. You’d think they’d be a bit circumspect, really, except of course that they’re cats.)

Painting: Life's Good (wouldn't be dead for quids)

Life's Good (wouldn't be dead for quids)

Panorama:

Dac at the exhibition, with five paintings

Dac at the exhibition, with five paintings

The paintings are:

  1. Comfort (cave cavorting)
  2. Confusion ( IN and OUT)
  3. Hope (ever Upwards)
  4. Isolation (lost horizons)
  5. Joy (field of sunflowers)

And finally:

Triptych: Change (faces)

Triptych: Change (faces)

We set off home through the pouring rain and howling gale, but I was glad we’d gone to the exhibition. Julie’s paintings are a cheering sight, full of skill, variety and interest.

Exhibition Solo 2010

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