State of Nature

State of Nature

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Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) French political philosopher, educationist and author, drew an equation between the informality of British dress, the virtues and simplicity of country life and the liberty of the British constitution. He hoped to change the traditional attitude of French aristocrats by having them embrace a ‘State of…

Blake’s Mystical Vision

Blake’s Mystical Vision

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William Blake (1757-1827) expressed an ardent belief in the freedom of the imagination through his poetry and striking symbolic paintings. He rejected traditional composition and his ideas of perspective evoked an enigmatic otherworldliness. His poems reflect a uniquely personal mystical vision one in which imagination and reality become one. He…

Gainsborough’s Lyrical Style

Gainsborough’s Lyrical Style

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English painter Thomas Gainsborough (1727–1788) endowed history with lyric faces, knowing precisely the style of elegance his sitters required. His technique was vivid, spontaneous and his use of colour passionate. He always talked of colour in musical terms; harmonies, rhythms and so forth. His beautiful likeness of the Hon Mrs…

Change, Carbon, Crying and Many Agendas – Paying the Price

Change, Carbon, Crying and Many Agendas – Paying the Price

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Change is inevitable and in a progressive country change is constant. The truth about the Carbon Tax in Australia is out there, but will it ever be found? This is the debate we had to have.

Sherlock Holmes 2: Chasing Shadows, the Game Continues

Sherlock Holmes 2: Chasing Shadows, the Game Continues

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Robert Downey Junior in drag being chased on a train, now there is something to look forward to enjoying, let alone another adventure with the super sleuth himself, Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes in the second movie in the series directed by Guy Ritchie.

Prejudice and Pride

Prejudice and Pride

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That the first two Hanoverian Georges disliked England was neither here nor there. George 1 calmed Hanoverian fears of the English chopping off his head by saying ‘I have nothing to fear – for the king killers are all my friends’. When George II succeeded in 1727 visiting Swiss Protestant,…

Sensibility and Sense

Sensibility and Sense

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The Georgian era in England began on horseback and ended in a railway carriage. As to the countryside, where the vast majority of England’s nearly six million people lived, it was mainly vast fields, sprawling common waste, wonderful woodland with bogs and moors being very treacherous places. Much of the…

Countdown to Atlantis, Comic Con Phenomenon and, about Hope

Countdown to Atlantis, Comic Con Phenomenon and, about Hope

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The final Atlantis Space Shuttle Mission countdown is over. Atlantis has left Cape Canaveral to rendezvous in orbit with the space station above the earth for the final time. “Let’s light this fire one more time, Mike, and witness this great nation at its best,” said Christopher Ferguson, Atlantis commander, to launch director Mike Leinbach just before the lift-off of STS-135, 8 July 2011.

Bentwood Classic

Bentwood Classic

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The decorative arts magazine The Studio was devoured in the coffee house culture of Vienna’s cafes at the turn of the 20th century with English fashion, sport and food debated endlessly. The attractiveness of handicraft items issuing from Vienna was demonstrated at the World Exposition in Paris of 1900. Michael…

Fitting Form to Function

Fitting Form to Function

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Charles Edward Jeanneret changed his name to Le Corbusier. As a modernist, he was primarily concerned with the least complex method of fitting form to function. His radical plans included replacing the historic centre of Paris with eighteen gigantic skyscrapers. Thankfully in this he failed. His books published between 1923…

Contemporary Art & Design

Contemporary Art & Design

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The characteristics that define contemporary art are evident in every age: confidence in execution, structure, form and style. A dispute known as the “Quarrel of the Ancients and Moderns,” dominated the intellectual life of Europe between 1683 and 1719. The crux was whether the Moderns (those living at the time)…