Saturday, June 29, 2013

When life gives you Clemens...

Hey pal, on Monday night I went to the Discipline lecture series at Gertrude Contemporary Gallery to see a talk by the Australian writer Justin Clemens.

The talk was packed, if you arrived 15 minutes before it started you probably wouldn't have gotten in. I got there 25 minutes early and just managed to squeeze in up the back.
As you can see in the above image, it was really dark where I was standing, and Clemens head was blocked by a TV, but even still, during the talk I made this drawing.

Clemens talked about the current state of art criticism and the varying degrees of censorship within contemporary art. 

Before the talk it felt like I was the only one there who didn't know who Justin Clemens is, but it didn't take long before he'd won me over. 

It wasn't just that Clemens is clearly a smart guy and that I'm really interested in what he was talking about, but also he spoke in a passionate and direct way that you don't always hear in public lectures.

After the talk I mustered up the courage to show Clemens the drawing. He was really great, and when I asked if he'd maybe sign it for me he said he'd be happy to.
Clemens was amazingly generous with me, and wrote "Dear Kenny Pittock With adoration Justin Clemens". It was pretty awesome.
After the talk I went out for dinner with two friends as a kind of goodbye thing for a friend who's moving overseas. 

The dinner is irrelevant to the Justin Clemens lecture but I really wanted to mention it because I never go out for dinner. We went to a Japanese place, and for dessert I had green tea flavoured ice-cream and Nutella dumplings. 

The same way I didn't really know about Justin Clemens before that night, I also didn't know that either of these foods existed. They were so yummy.

I didn't think to take a photo of my dessert but here's a quick painting I just did of what it looked like, (I made the spoon out of clay).
Justin Clemens seems like he can potentially be pretty brutal with his art criticism, and it's entirely possible that one day he may write something about my art that'll get me really upset, but I think the guy's brilliant and at least I'll always have this drawing.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Political Artist

As of an hour ago Julia Gillard is no longer the Australian Prime Minister.

Everybody has a much more informed opinion than I do, so I just watch the TV, listen closely, and make lousy drawings.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

My train fetish

Heya bluey, how're yooey?

About a week ago I submitted my honors degree 3000 word essay. In the essay I analysed the strategy behind England born Scottish artist Martin Creed's website.

(Speaking of websites, don't forget that I've got one!)

One of Creed's most famous works is titled Work No. 79, it's a piece he did in 1993 where he thumbed a ball of blu-tack onto the gallery wall,
and so obviously when it came to submitting my essay I decided to stick the thing together using blu-tack instead of staples.
Ha, it was definitely worth it, although I'm sure I'll lose some marks for being so tacky.

Anyway, my essay's done and I feel really good about it, and what that means is I didn't have to be studying on the train ride into the city this morning. and so I was a little excited to do some train drawing.

The first man I started to draw got off the train after only one stop.
So this is the finished drawing.
(paint marker on 225gsm paper, 21 x 29cm)

The second drawing, this time of a woman, lasted a lot longer.

As I was getting off the train I showed the drawing to the woman, she was nice about it. 

Here's the video I made. 
And here's the finished drawing. 
(paint marker on 225gsm paper, 21 x 29cm)

After I got off the train I got onto a tram full of year seven high school girls going on an excursion. I sat opposite a young girl whose Mum was one of the supervisors on the trip. 

The daughters Mum was talking to another Mum who was also there to supervise the excursion. The daughters Mum was explaining to the other Mum that because her daughter is vision impaired she doesn't have to pay for public transport.

"But I do have a normal myki card as well" protested the daughter. "Well you shouldn't have a normal myki because then you have to pay money" said the mother. "But I want to have a normal myki card!" said the daughter, "But you're not normal and we can't afford it" snapped the mother.

It was heartbreaking.

The daughter turned around and it was only then I saw her face, one eye was completely fine and the other was blind. It was glassy and cloudy, and looked a lot like my poor old dog Pugs' eye when he started losing his vision.

Going blind is easily one of my biggest fears, and the three minute tram ride really shook me up, so much so that I decided to go to the National Gallery of Victoria to see the Monet exhibition. Poor Monet. Like Pugs and the girl on the train, Monet too had struggled with his sight. 

I went by myself as I couldn’t find anybody around the studios willing to pay to see the show. It cost 25 dollars, and so because of that I arrived at the National Gallery 25 minutes before it opened. 

Here's a photo of the other people already there waiting to see the show.
I loved the exhibition. It was so much better than I expected. Ha, spoiler alert; Monet is a great artist.

It’s funny to think how Monet and all the other impressionists were so inspired by the fleeting blurs they saw from looking out of train windows, and here’s me, 100 years later, much more interested with what’s going on inside the train.

The woman I drew was reading a book called Fetish by Canada born Australian author Tara Moss. I hadn't heard of it, but I googled it, and it turns out it's Tara Moss' first novel, and also a bestseller.

Here's a photo of Tara Moss with her book.
And to think, right now you could be reading something written by somebody that looks like that, but instead you're reading this, written by me. So I just want to take a moment to say thank you, I really appreciate it. 

Hope to see you soon. Love, Kenny.
PS. On Sunday I de-installed the Kenneth Biennale at both TCB Gallery and Margaret Lawrence Gallery, so Rearview Gallery is now the only part of the Biennale still running. It's open every day until this Saturday afternoon.

I'm sitting Rearview Gallery from 12-6 on Wednesday June 26, (tomorrow), so if you're in the area I'd love for you to come see the show. Please visit me, look how lonely I am.
Thanks again for reading, hopefully see you tomorrow!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Keep your Eye on West Space

Hey, so ok, guess what, I'm gonna be on a game show tomorrow night!

It goes from 7pm until 7.30pm.

It's happening at West Space gallery, but it's no problem if you're not in the area, you'll still be able to watch it live as it's streaming on the web at 

Here's a video of the Channel G logo.
Channel G is basically an event where an exhibition space has been turned into a live online television station. There's a lot of cool shows going on, I'm especially excited to watch Oscar Perry's Artworld Poker Tournament.

For a full listing of what's on and when, click here to read "the TV Guide".

The game show I'm on is called The Eye. Here's an image of The Eye itself.
Channel G is being run by Sean Peoples.

If you've seen the Chris Hill I talked about in the last blog post then you would've seen Sean's work as well. 

Sean's piece in Margaret Lawrence Gallery is titled Fizzer. It's a box of expired green Fizzers with a painted plastic skull in it.
, Fizzer is on the floor, just around the corner from the Chris Hill.

There isn't really anymore I can say. That's all I know about the show really, I'm just a contestant.

In other news, last night I was helping my Dad in the backyard and when I lifted something a bit too carelessly I tore a ligament in my wrist.

It hurts so much. Even just typing this is killing me. 

Here's a photo that was just taken of me and Sean, with my arm all bandaged up like a kid dressed as a Mummy.
Hopefully my injury doesn't stop me from winning the game show.

On the plus side, I have been wanting to buy a pair of fingerless gloves for ages, and now I'll only have to buy one for my left hand.

As a contestant I was asked to pick one topic I'd like to specialise in. 

I haven't been told what anybody else picked.

I picked Eminem.

What would you've picked?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Hill the world, make it a better place

Hey hill billy, how the hill are ya?

I thought I might take a minute to try and explain a little about the work I put together that's in the current exhibition at the Margaret Lawrence Gallery. 
Ok, this is pretty confusing but I'll try my best to talk you through it.

Basically my friend, whose name is Chris Hill, curated the show on at the Margaret Lawrence Gallery, under the title Third/Fourth: Artist Facilitated Biennale.

I was really excited to have been asked if I'd like to put a work in the show. 

As Amy and I were organising the Kenneth Biennale at the same time, I asked Chris if my work in his Biennale could be constructing a small Pavilion for the Kenneth Biennale.

As a little nod to Chris Hill, who was very great to say yes, for the Kenneth Biennale Pavilion I decided to build a Hill, and ask seven different artists named Chris, if they'd like to put a work on it. 

And so my work within Chris Hill's show, is a Chris Hill.

If I didn't explain that clearly enough let me know, but if you're still with me, here's some photos of the hill.
The seven artists on the hill areChris Clarke, Chris Sciuto, Christine Pittock, Christina Hayes, Chris O'Brien, Chris Hill, and Christo Crocker

I'll give you a quick tour of each of the works.

This is by Chris Clarke, it's a very small LG fridge and is titled Life's Good

The brand of fridge and title references Chris Hill's full name; Chris LG Hill.
An image of fake food on a fake fridge, Life's Good is pretty great.

It's made of steel, a digital print and a magnetic strip.
This is Burning Ying Yang, by Chris Sciuto.

It's acrylic on material on a mirror. Here's me reflecting in it.

This is a charcoal pencil drawing by Christine Pittock, or as I call her, Mum.

It's 42 x 29.7cm. My Mum's a nurse, as far as I know this is the only drawing she's drawn while I've been alive. She drew it while we were sitting on the couch together, I think in 2001.
I got it out of the bin and kept it all these years. It was pretty awesome to be able to put my Mum into a show at Margaret Lawrence Gallery.
This next work is a collaboration between Christina Hayes and Chris O'Brien.
The two figures in the work are both the artists.

I had a lot of fun installing this work, it's so much fun to play with.
It's titled The Chicken Coup.
This is No problems, by Chris Hill.  
During the opening Chris put a real tulip in with the fakes.

The mug was sourced from the Margaret Lawrence Gallery kitchen.
This is by Christo Crocker. It's titled Christo's. As in, Chris toes. 
It's made of plasticine. Toe puns aside, it's a really beautiful work.
The toes are in a position where they almost look like they're poking out, with the rest of a body hiding under the hill.
Speaking of what's under the hill though, it's actually made up of bags of crisps.

Crisp Hill.

I explained it in this painting, hung behind the hill.

Here I am at Aldi buying a hills worth of crisps, (and also sampling the grapes).
Ok cool, I think that's enough for now. If you're in Melbourne, after reading this you should go and actually visit the Chris Hill. 

I wish it could be Chris-mas all year long, but sadly the show finishes this Saturday afternoon. Margaret Lawrence is open every day from now until then, 12-5pm.

It's kind of a funny, humble little pun of a hill, but there's some really great work on it and I think this is a piece that could grow, get more Chris' and then be shown again one day, so if you're name is Chris and you'd like to be a part of a future Chris Hill, please contact me!

Thanks heaps for reading, see you soon.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Mastering breakfast

Hey good cookin', this morning I went out for breakfast with my pals Alex and Nelson.

It's no Master piece but here's something I drew while we waited for the Chef.
(Paint marker on 225gsm paper. 7.5 x 10.5cm).

Nel was convinced the Master on the left looks like Kim Jong-un. It's all in the eye brow.

Master Chef is on channel ten at 7.30 tonight, I don't watch it, but maybe you do. Ha, anyway, I'll write more later, I just thought I'd say hi. 

Hope you're Sunday morning has been easy.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Crocodile rock!

Hey sharp tooth, how're ya?

I'll try and make this snappy, but I couldn't resist taking a quick break from writing my thesis to quickly fill you in on some news I'm really excited about.

One of my best buds and favourite musicians, Nelson Walkomhas his first full length album coming out really soon, and if that isn't exciting enough, I'm very proud to say that I was very privileged to have been asked to do the album art.

(I wrote "album art" instead of "cover art" because not only did I get to do the cover, but I also did inside the cover, as well the back of the CD, the actual CD itself, and even the bit underneath the CD!)

The album, put out under the name Grayling, is titled Crocodiles and Other People, and I've been listening to it on repeat, non stop, for the last three weeks. I love it so much. Nelson is really, really good.

Although I can't show you the album art just yet, I can show you this sneak peak image which features
 a detail of my painting that appears on the cover. 
Actually, here's one more little sneak peak, featuring another detail from the cover, as well as incorporating one of my all time favourite things in the world; using a pairs of eyes to function as a double o.
Also, not only did I get to design the CD, but amazingly, a song that I wrote the lyrics for is actually featuring on it!

You might remember the song, I've mentioned it on this blog before, but so basically on March 18, 2011, I watched the channel ten six o'clock news, and then I wrote a poem about it.

Here's the song.
The track on the album has been re-recorded and is a bit more up tempo than this version, at first I liked the old one a lot better but this new one is definitely growing on me. It's fun to compare the two.

But so yeah, a song I wrote will be available, (on iTunes and everything), on an actual produced and mastered album, presented amongst a handful of really incredible songs by a musician I love, and I got to design the album cover. How cool is that?! 

I'll keep you posted on the progress of Crocodiles and Other People, but in the meantime I really just wanted to mention that it's coming soon.

But anyway, yeah, to finish off this blog post here's a photo of Nels and I taken out the front after one of his gigs. 
We were doing our best to look like super cool rockstar icons so naturally we got our hands on a couple of cigarettes.
Thanks heaps for reading. See you later, alligator!

(If you're reading this relatively close to when I've put this up, I'll be sitting The Kenneth Biennale at TCB Gallery from 12-6 tomorrow, Thursday, June 13, so if you're in the area please drop in and say hi!)

Monday, June 10, 2013

It's been gnarly

Hey thanks so much to everyone that made it to any of the Kenneth Biennale openings last week. I hope you liked the work and had a great time :)
That's all I wanted to say really.

I'll write heaps more about it about it really, really soon but for now I'm busy trying to multitask between writing a thesis and helping my Dad build a carport. 

The show's are all still on for a couple of weeks, please come say hi if you get the chance. 

But yeah, thank you again :)