This highly creative show in Melbourne is on view until January 31, 2016 and is sure to have the whole city talking.
At the preview fashion models dressed in surreal, experimental garments were unveiled alongside Barry Humphries ‘siamese’ shoes.
A taxidermy cat has its front leg raised, a weird salute, drawing attention to himself and the artist who gave it new life.
Surreal is a term we have all tossed off carelessly when endeavouring to put words to paper to describe something we often don’t understand or comprehend.
Curators have taken a thought-provoking approach, highlighting the ongoing vitality and power of Surrealist thought, which had its period of Genesis prior to World War I.
A collaborative effort between various departments of the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), the show highlights the influence of Surrealism on popular culture through the mediums of visual, performance, film and fashion as art.
It certainly reveals the breadth and depth of human ingenuity and expression in works that while strange are continually fascinating.
All art remains subjective; open to interpretation and how it affects human emotions. The structured hierarchical society of the nineteenth century had imposed straitjackets on art through its restricting values.
The style now known as Surrealism emerged during the 1920’s following World War I at Paris, followed by England, America and the rest of Europe.
Surrealism had an aim to resolve dream and reality began by calling on the unconscious to express itself through unnerving images, illogical scenes and strange creatures emerging from everyday objects.
Gender roles were also part of the original challenge. An exploration of woman in society meant that her lips, torso and reproduction areas inspired works that can still be confronting or playful.
A high bed on a plinth with a ladder to the top for instance, could be viewed as a stairway to heavenly dreams, to erotic adventures or indeed, a stairway to where your worst nightmares come true.
Times have changed and as bizarre as it may seem, its appeal in its most challenging images while limited, certainly has its champions. It could be likened to freedom of speech, without the words.
Like all art forms it has a central core with racial elements ranging left and right and Surrealism is entirely dependent on how you would like to view it.
From the Dali-esque dreamscapes of Australian artist James Gleeson to hauntingly beautiful photographs by iconic photographer Max Dupain, the NGV show Lurid Beauty at NGV Australia Fed Square presents more than 230 works traversing painting, drawing, collage, sculpture, fashion, film and photography.
Tony Ellwood, Director, NGV, said, ‘It is inconceivable to imagine a world without Surrealism. The rich legacy of the movement is pervasive not only in contemporary art, but also film, theatre and even advertising, showing its continued influence upon modern society’.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616) English dramatist and poet, born at Stratford-on-Avon is considered in the western world, the greatest playwright who ever lived. He certainly is the most controversial.
The bard from England’s Stratford on Avon, helped to shape not only England’s sense of national identity, but also that of the English-speaking world as he became the greatest dramatist of all time.
Everything about him including his portraits, are a puzzlement and part of the bigger mystery surrounding the poet, dramatist actor and his identity.
Since Shakespeare took the London world by storm with his plays, his sonnets, words of wisdom Shakespeare and his life’s journey, has been subjected to scrutiny on a monumental scale throughout the western world.
Who was he really? Speculation continues to be rife, despite many theories abounding.
The Royal Collection Trust program of exhibitions in 2016 at Windsor Castle will feature Shakespeare in the Library, presented by Queen Elizabeth II, whose ancestor Queen Elizabeth 1 enjoyed the bard’s sense of humour and drama. It will mark the 400 year anniversary since he died.
The Flower portrait of William Shakespeare is an image widely recognised as being of the literary hero.
It seems to have been inspired by the engraving portrait of the bard that appeared on the title page of the First Folio of Shakespeare’s works produced posthumously.
Named for Sir Desmond Flower who donated it to the Shakespeare Museum in 1911, it is a work proven to have been painted in the 19th century not 1609 as marked, by its unknown painter.
It was acquired sometime around 1840 from a widow who sold it to a member of the Flower Family as authentic. They gave it to the Royal Shakespeare Company.
The image was drawn and engraved by Martin Droeshout in 1623 with the portrait from it painted somewhere between 1810 – 1840. (1810 – 15 seems likelier to me, leading up to his 200th anniversary).
William Shakespeare (1564-1616) said ‘we know what we are, but know not what we may become’ as he wrote about history, wrote about romance and tragedy. His ‘comedic’ plays featured morally dubious plots, certainly by the standards of our day.
Perhaps we will never know the truth of it all. What we do know is that whoever the man was behind the mask his words are evidence enough for scholars to declare that he was a true genius.
Muse of fire that would ascend
The brightest heaven of invention;
A kingdom for a stage
Who can believe it’s that time again, and the Spring Racing Carnival has just started here in Australia.
I know it’s only early October, but a girl needs to get organized for the trifecta of race meets.
Derby Day, Oaks Day and the big one, Melbourne Cup Day, all held at Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, will be upon us in less than a months time.
So I thought it was time to pull together some key looks for the most fashionable days.
There are rules for the races, and I for one quite like to keep a little tradition in our world.
Then we have The Cup, where anything goes.
Adelaide has always been renowned for innovative arts projects and the inaugural Adelaide Guitar Chamber Music Festival 6-8 November 2015 will be a feast of music, wine and food courtesy of the generous sponsorship of the University of Adelaide’s Elder Conservatorium of Music and Kay Brother’s Winery at McLaren Vale.
Music making is a personal business, and festival artistic director and guitarist Oliver Fartach-Naini will provide some exciting options for afficienados, passionate performers and listeners of classical guitar. He noted that ‘for me the interaction and collaboration with others has always been the most exciting part of music making’. The guitar is a romantic instrument, providing often blissful experiences of harmony that have helped revitalize public interest in the instrument itself in recent times, and the music written for it. Download the Guitar Chamber Music Festival Brochure
Spanning four centuries of development, the variety of classical guitars available today offer different sound aesthetics, allowing for different aspects of repertoire to shine. And like the music itself, just the assortment is a deeply personal and passionate interest for many.
There will be hidden gems, virtuosic tangos, music workshops and masterclasses as well as world premiere’s of compositions by composers Alfred Uhl and Stephen Wittington. The director playing with colleagues Keith Crellin (viola) and Peter Handsworth (clarinet) will open the Festival. The second evening will offer a program of repertoire favourites, including duos by Paganini, Pujol and Piazzola with internationally acclaimed violinist Sung-Ju Lee and guitarist Lee Song-Ou from South Korea (pictured) playing up a storm.
The Grigoryan Brothers, Slava and Leonard will feature in an exciting finale recital held in Kay Brother’s winery at McLaren Vale, shades of the venue where I first heard Slava play at Mudgee in NSW many moons ago. The sound of string instruments in a room full of wine vats is always mesmerizing. Chamber music with guitar is often overlooked, and so this should prove a welcome celebration for all as it comes back into fashion in the hands of so many wonderful players. Adelaide Guitar Chamber Music Festival | 6-8 November 2015 | BOOK NOW
Lurid Beauty at NGV Australia may not be everyone’s ‘cup of tea’ but will provide a centre of focus for a healthy creative exchange about what art is, or is not
The bard from England's Stratford on Avon William Shakespeare helped shape England’s sense of national identity as he became the greatest dramatist of all time
Shakespeare in the Royal Library, starting 13 February 2016, is an exhibition at Windsor Castle examining aspects of the playwright and his influence on royalty
Adelaide Guitar Chamber Music Festival 6-8 November 2015 a feast for the senses is led by artistic director Oliver Fartach-Nain featuring the Grigoryan Brothers
Bravo ACO director and violinist Richard Tognetti chose a trio of master works by Austrian composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to celebrate 25-years as leader