Monday, February 11, 2013

Keep me posted

Hey pal, great to see you! Hope you're well, it's been a pretty crazy week.

Here's a painting I did in late 2012. It's acrylic on board, 29.5cm x 21.5cm. 
The painting was part of a little series I did called Clingy Ex-boyfriend

I entered the painting into the 2013 Linden Postcard Prize held at Linden Gallery and last Saturday I found out that it won. Amazing!

When they announced the award and I went up the front to accept it, artist Fergus Binns was already up there for having just won an award himself. I was stoked to meet him and get the chance to tell him I really like his paintings.

Not long after that we both had to sign a form, my Dad was with me and taking lots of photos on his phone. He was taking photos the way Dads do best; two hands on the phone, arms extended, and not knowing how to put it on silent so it was constantly making that cha-kink noise. 

It was pretty embarrassing having this going on with Fergus Binns next to me. I tried to make a joke to him, "So how come your Dad's not here taking photos?". "Pardon?" he said. I hadn't realised that he was on the phone. This only made me feel even more embarrassed. Hopefully Fergus was on the phone to his Dad.
Here's another photo my Dad took, while all the prize winners were having their photos taken.

The man in the blue shirt is Martin Foley, the State Labour member for the Albert Park district. Martin was an upbeat and friendly guy, he's in the photo because he sponsored one of the awards.

About an hour after that photo was taken he took a photo of my painting, (below), and put it on twitter.
Along with the picture Martin Foley tweeted;
"Slime balls misery guts : winner of 2013 #lindenpostcard prize. Proving that art really is a subjective field"

Ha, tough critic. 

I liked it a lot, pretty funny, I retweeted it.

But so ok, here's my statement about the work;

I guess Clingy Ex-boyfriend, like most of my work, is meant to be both funny and serious. At the time I painted it I figured there were basically two types of people; there’s slime balls and there’s misery guts. Every morning you wake up as one or the other. I’m usually misery guts, although I should probably work on that as I’m pretty sure being a slime ball is the better option. 

On Wednesday, February 6 they printed my painting, as well as some of my statement, on page 13 of The Age newspaper. So cool.

What an Age we live in.
The little article was placed next to a great big article about the funny and controversial Indigenous artist Richard Bell.
The Richard Bell article talks about his upcoming exhibition at MUMA, (Monash University Museum of Art). Yesterday I went to the opening of the show.

Richard Bell, along with the brilliant Aboriginal writer, actor and activist Gary Foley, gave an informal and incredibly articulate artist talk. The two bantered back and fourth like a comedy duo while remaining passionate and insightful. The talk took place within a Bell installation designed to replicate the original Aboriginal Embassy, and most of the artist talk explained the genuinely inspiring story of the Embassy's history.

(In year twelve english class we studied the lyrics to Paul Kellys hit single From Little Things Big Things Grow, so I'd already learnt a lot of what they were saying from that.)

Throughout the talk Richard Bell had two white, blonde haired models behind him. A guy and a girl. The guy opened everyones beers with his teeth.
After the talk I showed Richard that we'd had newspaper articles printed next to each other. Ha, I figured there was no way he wouldn't be impressed by that.

And so here I am next to Richard Bell, in print and in real life.
After this I unzipped my backpack. On the way to the Richard Bell artist talk I'd bought a "Paint your own boomerang" from a souvenir store, with the hope that he might sign it. 
I was a bit nervous about asking him, I didn't want to offend him, but when I showed him the boomerang he laughed real loudly, and said "Wow!!"

He then wrote 'Wow!!' on the boomerang, and signed and dated it.
When I asked if we could have a photo with it he called over for his cronies to join us.  When they came over I told Richard, "Well I guess if I have to pick which side to go on then I'll stand next to her", as I swapped sides with him to stand beside the woman, "Bloody oath you will!" he growled and wrestled me back to where I was standing, next to the guy.
To make this moment even more ridiculous, at this point the great artist Gareth Samson crept into the background, doing his angry old man face and frowning over Richards shoulder.



It was a pretty surreal situation, my only regret is that I didn't think to take my top off and show the guy with the six pack how much better my body is than his.

As a last little fun fact to finish this blog post off, Slime Balls and Misery Guts is actually a painting I did on the back of another painting that I was less happy with, called Please don't hang up on me.

I've used the green paintbrush tool on Paint to remove my phone number, but so if you ever get a chance to see Slime balls and Misery Guts here's the painting you'll find on the back of it.
Again it's acrylic on board, and obviously again it's 29.5cm x 21.5cm. I had this painting floating around my studio for a couple of days until eventually I ran out of boards to paint on and decided that I didn't like it enough to not paint on the back of it. 

Ha, a painting of a noose with the words "HANG IN THERE", I was certainly being a misery guts that day.

Ok, I think that's pretty much everything. I guess the last thing I want to say in regards to the Linden thing is that I'm really proud and thrilled for my painting to have even been noticed in such an elaborate show full of so much great work, let alone to have won the thing is just incredible.

I'd really like to thank the people at Linden and of course the three judges, but also, you know, I wanna thank you as well, one of the few readers of this blog, so thanks, I really appreciate it. 

Anyway, maybe I'm being a misery guts here but as things seem to be going weirdly ok for me at the moment it feels pretty unavoidable that it's all about to come crashing downhill really fast. The old 'what goes up, must come down' is a scary little thought, in the meantime though I'm off to go buy $5000 worth of gold plated jet ski's and Richard Bell bikini models.

6 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your winning postcard! I like it - and the complex responses it evokes.

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  2. Hey Tina, thanks a lot for the kind words, really happy to hear you like it.

    ReplyDelete
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