Rebecca Solnit - The Faraway Nearby

I loved this book. To the point where I had to stop reading it intermittently in order to make it last. (I can read a book very quickly, and then it is done).
I need to reread it, these notes are from a few months ago, and I want to offer it to various people I know; my Mother, my aunts, my friends, my bookclub. It also made me want to read everything she has ever written, as did 'Men Explain Things to Me' the essays I read before this (they made me want everyone to read them).

So, I will read everything I can get my hands on, beginning with 'The Encyclopedia of Trouble and Spaciousness' which I have put down for other reasons – it's harder going, all that trouble – though Solnit manages to focus on community, humanity and hope in the direst of tragedies (Katrina, Fukushima and the BP Oil Spill). Her description of her experience of the Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto is breathtaking. But here, now, from 'The Faraway Nearby'... I had trouble choosing bits to share here out of context.

The object we call a book is not the real book, but its potential, like a musical score or seed. It exists fully only in the act of being read; and its real home is inside the head of the reader, where the symphony resounds, the seed germinates. A book is a heart that only beats in the chest of another. The child I once was read constantly and hardly spoke, because she was ambivalent about the merits of communication, about the risks of being mocked or punished or exposed. The idea of being understood and encouraged, of recognising herself in another, of affirmation, had hardly occurred to her and neither had the idea that she had something to give others. 

At its best, visual art is philosophy by other means and poetry without words. Visual art asks the grandest questions, about the most essential ingredients of existence: about time, space, perception, value, creation, identity, beauty. It makes mute objects speak and it renews the elements of the world through the unexpected, or it situates the everyday in a way that asks us to wake up and notice. This kind of art raises fundamental questions about the act of making, about what it means, whom it is for, what happens in that engagement with materials and history and embodied imaginations. I arrived in the realm of visual art in my early twenties, and it was a spacious arena in which to come of age, one that opened up the terrain in which I would travel to create and converse. I was invited into the conversation, to speak and to listen and to learn. 

Who hears you? To have something to say is one thing; to have someone who hears it is another. To be heard literally is to have the vibrations of the air travel through the labyrinth of the listener's ear to the mind, but more must unfold in that darkness. You choose to hear what corresponds to your desires, needs and interests, and there are dangers in a world that corresponds too well, with curating your life into a mirror that reflects only the comfortable and familiar, and dangers in the opposite direction as well. Listen carefully. 


Kate Zambreno Heroines

I am so bad at this I know, but I have decided to just post notes from books I am reading, as there are so many, and I want to try to keep track a little. This seemed an appropriate one to start with. Also, read this.

I am beginning to realize that taking the self out of our essays is a form of repression. Taking the self out feels like obeying a gag order – pretending an objectivity where there is nothing objective about the experience of confronting and engaging with and swooning over literature. The comments on Frances Farmer is My Sister and allied blogs that have built sometimes to this glorious other text, this communion, this conversation, this casual liquidness, the superlative nature, that is generative and affirming as opposed to dismissive, that uses our own language instead of theirs. 

p 281 Kate Zambreno Heroines


Dancing Umbrellas

Rebecca Baumann and Damiano Bertoli at Heide. Dancing Umbrellas. I always mean to go to Heide more.


Darebin Art Prize

Finalists /
Samara ADAMSON-PINCZEWSKI/  Rushdi ANWAR/  Justin BALMAIN/  Damiano BERTOLI/  Kate BEYNON/  Nicole BREEDON/ Jon BUTT/ Nicholas CHILVERS and Hanna CHETWIN  /  Nadine CHRISTENSEN  /  Zoe CROGGON/  Julie DAVIES and Alex RIZKALLA/  Elyse de VALLE/  DAMP/ Ara DOLATIAN/  Leslie EASTMAN/  Phil EDWARDS/  Simon FINN/  Carly FISCHER  /  Patrick FRANCIS/  Wanda GILLESPIE/  Tim GRESHAM/  Michelle HAMER/  Katherine HATTAM/  Linda JUDGE  / Cathy LAUDENBACH/  Jordan MARANI/  Kent MORRIS/  Noriko NAKAMURA  /  Petra NICEL/  SimonPERICICH/  Elvis RICHARDSON with James HAYES/  Louise RIPPERT/  Kiron ROBINSON/  NatalieRYAN/  Bill SAMPSON  /  Rachel SCHENBERG/  Vivian Cooper SMITH  / Tai SNAITH/  Dell STEWART/  Sophia SZILAGYI/  Georgia SZMERLING/  David WADELTON/  Daisy WATKINS-HARVEY  /  Alice WORMALD

Charlotte DAY / Director, Monash University Museum of Art
Nick SELENITSCH / Artist
Claire WATSON / Curator, Bundoora Homestead Art Centre

Opening night (winner announced) Thursday 10 December / 6-8pm

With special guest speaker
Associate Professor Robert NELSON / Monash University

Darebin Art Prize / 2015
11 December / 2015 — 21 February / 2016

Bundoora Homestead Art Centre
Cnr Snake Gully Drive and Prospect Hill Drive / Bundoora
Wed-Fri / 11am-4pm | Sat-Sun / 12noon-5pm

Free Admission


Big Pop Tropical Night Market

Popcraft Studio is hosting a Tropical Night Market on Saturday 12 December between 5pm
and 9pm.
This festive market will feature 20 hand-picked makers, designers and artists and an immersive multimedia experience with site specific sculpture and video projections by Scott Morrison, Eddy Carroll, Erin & Gus and Pauline Tran.

The market will feature the work of local ceramicists, jewellers, textile designers and artisans
including: Julie B ceramics, Pegs Marlow, Rosanna Ford, Beck Jobson and Ramona
Barry, Emma Greenwood, John Brooks, Ainslie Macauly, Lucreccia and Cecilia
Quintanilla , Sunday Morning Designs, Linnet and Mary Good, Shuh Lee, Dell Stewart, Lisa
Hilli, Cat Rabbit, Grafa Garden, Stella Has Knits, Tai Snaith, Oracles, Yoshie Burns and



We had some time in Tasmania in winter. It was bright and fresh.


Fertile Ground

This is a detail from my weaving for Fertile Ground 2014. An exhibition of work by Artists in Residence at the Australian Tapestry Workshop in 2014.

Lyndall Watson, Michelle Hamer, Storm Gold, Caroline Phillips, Vicki Mason, Natasha Dusenjko, Troy Emery, Gillian Lavery, Dell Stewart, Emily Ferretti and Nikos Pantazopoulos.

Opening tomorrow, Tuesday 24 March 6- 8pm.
Exhibition runs from Wednesday 25 March to Friday 1 May and the workshop is well worth a visit, I love it there.


TV eyes

It's the end of the year. I'm sharing some videos I liked this year, for various reasons, some clever, some dumb. Happy New Year!

Murlo — Into Mist

I often hate the look of it, but 3D can be so good, mostly when it isn't trying to replicate the real world.

M.I.A. & The Partysquad - Double Bubble Trouble

I always love M.I.A. videos, and this awesome mess is directed by M.I.A. herself.

This one's a fashion film, but you know, I like it. Sparkly amazing kid from that Sia video. Contemporary dance makes sense in music videos, and fashion makes sense on film, with music. 

Flying Lotus - Kill Your Co-Workers

I love the animated gore when the bots go bad.

Liars — Mess on a Mission

I often love Liars videos too.

Major Lazer ft. Laidback Luke & Ms. Dynamite - Sweat

卡莉怪妞 -- Kira Kira Killer

I couldn't do a music video collection without a Kyary Pamyu Pamyu one. Not my favourite, but still worth watching.



Happy Christmas to all. We had a sweet time, baby knows about presents now. How delightful.