Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Altona, Melbourne

These wonderful sea creatures are out of their watery element on the Altona foreshore in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. It's winter here so no one is picnicking on the sand.
I've been here for a few days so will share some more photos.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Japan- Hello kitty

Hello Kitty is everywhere in Japan & each temple will have merchandise with Kitty featured on it at their location. It's kitsch, it's brash, it's marketing, it gets me in!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Japan- cleanliness

Cleanliness is highly prized in Japan & these 2 examples of hand driers are also sculptural & extremely functional. The one on the left is dual purpose with automatic water & a drying function.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Japan- food

I always think food & shopping at sales are universal in any language. Bob wishes I wasn't so good at spotting the SALE signs! And while food can be hit & miss when overseas, the beauty
of Japanese food is that the cafes & restaurants display bowls of the dishes in their front windows, with the prices. Mostly plastic representations are used, but this window had actual dishes.
This is typical of what we ate for lunch. There is always something pickled & presentation is beautiful.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Rubbing Japan # 2

Thanks Diane, Jan, Kate & Marlene for the comments on the last post. There are many sites on Manhole Covers if you Google as Jan did.
And while my trip to Japan was in October 2008 I'll share a few of the photos I took- they fall into 3 categories- food, toilets & Kitty.
When I travel I prepare a rubbing kit- a selection of 2-3 colours of paint sticks which coordinate with my chosen fabric which was in fat quarters in this case. I also carry greaseproof paper [non waxed lunch wrap] for ironing off the excess oil & colour, masking tape & wet wipes for my hands as I don't use gloves. You can see some of these items in the photo. A sign reading "mad artist" in the country's language is optional.
And after all that rubbing, green tea is in order- the bitter taste is enhanced by the sweet which accompanies it.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rubbing Japan

With gorgeous sewer covers like these in Japan, I couldn't resist taking my oil sticks to them. The white cranes are in Himeji where the World Heritage listed White Crane Castle is.
People would often stop & tell us things, but it was all in Japanese & we don't speak the language. Only had to avoid a truck once in 1 of the locations.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Farewell New York, for now

Thanks Jan & Diane for letting me know you are still interested in my views of New York! Diane, I took actual fabric rubbings of the sewer covers in Japan last year- will dig out some photos of that.
I found inspiration around every corner in Manhattan whether it was a famous sight or not, from the elegant to the kitsch, from the glamorous to the grotty.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The ones that got away!

My last post about the American paintings reminded me I still had a few photos of New York that I'd like to share with you. I apologise in advance if you are "New Yorked out" but I find a trip away can really open one's eyes to myriad possibilities.
These are the rubbings that got away! I was amused by the "Made in India" on the sewer cover.

Monday, June 22, 2009

American Impressionism & Realism exhibition

Now I know where the American paintings from the Met in New York went while they were renovating the wing- they're here in Brisbane for the American Impressionism & Realism exhibition! On a rainy Sunday what better way to spend the day than being immersed in these beautiful images of countryside, domesticity & portraits of children & women capturing & revealing a bygone age. Artists Sargent, Hassam & Cassatt are featured strongly as well as Australian artists to reinforce the trends of the times & relate to our cultural context.
The beautifully elegant rooms displaying the paintings were crowded with art lovers or the curious speaking in hushed tones with the occasional crying baby.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

2 Exhibitions

Two concurrent exhibitions in Brisbane at the QUT Art Museum are From Here to Eternity: Contemporary Tapestries from the Victorian Tapestry Workshop & Still Life: Joachim Froese Photographs 1999-2008.
Both well worth a visit if you're in town. Detail R is from one of Froese's beautiful black & white studies of decay & mortality.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Wendy Bailye

Felt artist Wendy Bailye was demonstrating felting techniques at the Craft & Quilt Fair. It looked so simple, but I know it takes practice not to get lumpy bits! The soft silk scarves with felted flowers looked like spring gardens.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Happy frogs

These 3 happy frogs brought a smile to my face when I saw them on the Sunnybank Quilters Bring & Buy table. I hope they found a suitable home.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Nic Bridges

Nic Bridges, artist, machine quilter, designer & teacher was helping Lisa Walton on her stand Dyed & Gone to Heaven. Nic & Janine Matthews are having a joint exhibition Dyad- Life From Two Perspectives, July 1-12 in Wollongong at the Project Contemporary Artspace.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Gala Dinner # 2

The Gala Dinner is a great opportunity to make new friends & renew acquaintances. I hadn't seen Erica Spinks, R & below in blue, for a while & now her good luck with the lucky door raffle rubbed off on me & I won a Caroline Sharkey print.
Met the multi-talented Fiona Hammond, favourite colour orange, who quilts, knits & beads wearing one of her own creations which will appear in the Beading magazine soon.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Gala Dinner- Helen Godden

Helen Godden, R was the guest speaker at the Quilters Guild of NSW Gala Dinner. This is always held on the Friday night of the quilt show. I have known Helen for quite a while, perhaps as long as she has been quilting which is only 6 years! Her painting background is now seeing her translate her talents into award winning quilts. She is a very entertaining speaker & had us in stitches!

Congratulations Brenda Smith

Do you know the work of Australian quilter Brenda Smith? I caught up with Brenda at the Sydney Quilt Show & the Gala Dinner. That's us sitting together- Brenda on the R.
'Savannah' below was first in the Art Quilt Open category, while 'Dreamlines #3' below R was also recognised with a prize. The other quilt is 'Magic Carpet' in the Fantasy touring exhibition.
Brenda designed the Sydney Quilt Show layout & does a wonderful job of designing websites as you can tell from mine!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bernina 8 series

Deborah Louie is the Bernina demonstrator that you will meet at the Craft & Quilt Fairs this year. Check out her wonderful quilting if you have the chance. 'Antique Floral Keyline Number 2' was her quilt at the Sydney Quilt Show which won a fourth in the Mixed Techniques- Anything Goes category.
I was lucky enough to have a play sew on the new 8 series Bernina which has many more features designed especially for quilters. But they still don't make you a coffee!

At the Sydney Quilt Show # 4

Met Elaine Rose, L editor of Australian Patchwork & Quilting magazine & Marianne Roberts, Deputy Publisher of Express Publications at the Sydney Quilt Show. Marianne's quilt 'Panel Beater's Daughter' is in the background. We are lucky to have quality patchwork & quilting magazines for our market showcasing the talents of Australians.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Art Gallery NSW # 2

Well, it's not Paris when you see the detail of Tom Roberts "Bailed Up" 1895, a favourite of mine at the Art Gallery of NSW. However the sculptures below, complete with sleeping guard in the archway could transport you there perhaps!

Wonderful graceful lines in the Sydney Long painting.

The Art Gallery of New South Wales

It was an absolutely glorious day when my friend Marilyn & I caught the No. 441 bus at the back of the Queen Victoria Building to the
Art Gallery of NSW. It is hard to imagine a bluer sky.