David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.


31 July 2014

Judging a cover by its cover : continued


Stop the presses, everyone! Gerald's on the radio.

What a pleasure it was this morning to listen to Gerald Murnane's every thoughtful word.

Last month we posted some review links (here) when his latest book A Million Windows was published. We also made mention at that time about the book's covers. Covers, plural. So it was of interest to hear Gerald comment about the cover at the start of this morning's interview.

.  .  .  .

Michael Cathcart : Some music there by Brian Eno, which seems a nice way to set the scene for our  next discussion. 

The reviewers think the world of the Australian writer Gerald Murnane. One calls him a genius, a writer widely considered to be the next Australian winner of the Nobel.  Peter Craven, who is one of our best literary critics, says 'No living Australian writer has higher claims to permanence  or a richer sense of distinction'. And a bloke called Blair Mahoney, who's a reviewer on Goodreads, just says that 'Gerald Murnane's a treasure'.

He's 75. He's here with his eleventh book. It's called A Million Windows, which comes from a line by the American writer Henry James : 'The house of fiction has in short not one window, but a million'.

Well, it's a strange and dreamlike book about a writer who is constantly reflecting on the act of story telling even as he tells us a story. 

Gerald, good morning. Welcome to the show.

Gerald Murnane : Thank you, Michael.

Michael Cathcart : Nice to have you here. Congratulations. It's a lovely book. It's actually a lovely book to handle. Did you feel that when it arrived? It just had this lovely weight to it.

Gerald Murnane : Everybody praises the cover. I had a different cover in mind, but that doesn't matter.

Michael Cathcart : Publishers are like that. They say, mate... the cover is our call, I know.

to listen to the full interview click here
'Books and Arts Daily', ABC.RN
31 July 2014



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29 July 2014

DEPOT


      
Dear Sir/Madam

Thank you for submitting an expression of interest for the Melbourne Art Trams project.

The selection panel has met and unfortunately your expression of interest was not selected to become a tram artwork.  We received over 100 expressions of interest including a significant number of very high quality submissions which made the selection panel’s task all the more difficult.

The eight successful artists will be announced in the next week and the first of the Melbourne Art Trams will roll out in early October.  Keep an eye on our website for further updates: melbournefestival.com.au/trams

Kind regards
Melbourne Art Trams

melbournefestival.com.au
10-26 October 2014

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TRA_M / TAR_M design

by Theatre of the Actors of Regard_Melbourne

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27 July 2014

Le Tour de France


Some of us like to think about things. 
Qu'est-ce que c'est un vélo?

Thinks : Must the front wheel always win, in relation to the rear? What colour is the maillot jaune, the yellow jersey, really? Is it not an anachronism that a Republic honours the King of the Mountains? Is the brain a binary cycler-ist? And it's rider?
       

 c.1920 - artist unknown  
     
Some of us simply like to go along for the ride.

collection : FIAPCE                         click image to enlarge
      
Today on the Champs-Élysées and tonight here on late night winter TV another great Tour de France will conclude. Winner of the mailllot jaune for 2014 is likely to be Vincenzo Nibali of Italy. Vive le Tour!
      

Louis Malle, 1962                Theatre of the Actors of Regard

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25 July 2014

(advertisement)


        
        
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23 July 2014

Justice is blind

          

      
Teen thugs plead their case:
                
"Sure we run into walls and crash through windows.
        
And yeah we do break our noses and we do bust our heads.
      
But hey it's not our fault.
              
We just can't see where we're going like this?!"

               

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22 July 2014

Generation LIKE

         

Theatre of the Actors of Regard  
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Post Script : 23 July 2014
It must be a zeitgeist thing. Doodled "Lets all merge the fan base!" on Monday evening, posted it here on Tuesday morning, then today in the Wednesday 'Age' we read :
Utopian Slumps founder Melissa Loughnan to join Anna Schwartz Gallery (article here)
              


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18 July 2014

AU VERNISSAGE CE SOIR


UNDRESSED : 
350 Years of Underwear in Fashion :
Bendigo Art Gallery until 26 October
      
POURQUOI ON VA EN VERNISSAGE
  
L'arrivée à la galerie des femmes à la mode de Bendigo :   
          
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4HxOkJ81KQM/U8Zpz1iq1OI/AAAAAAAALJY/1Sz4fAJlUvM/s1600/Postcard_Albert-Guillaume_POURQUOI-ON-VA-EN-VERNISSAGE_800.gif
               click on image for full illustration by Albert Guillaume
POUR EXHIBER UNE TOILETTE SENSATIONNELLE.
                 
Un|dressed for Regardism : Bridget Bardot wearing lingerie designed by Robert French in the 1960s.
  
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17 July 2014

THE AXE MAN COMETH


This morning we watched in disgust as The Senate finally passed the Abbott Government's AXE THE TAX legislation.

A few days ago, Bill Shorten made one of his better speeches, we reckon. You can read it HERE on page 31 of Hansard.

The extract below is the conclusion of the Minister for the Environment, Greg Hunt's advocacy, followed by Bill Shorten.

... Ultimately, repealing the carbon tax will reduce the cost of living, make jobs more secure and improve the competitive position of our country. It will be replaced with a system which actually reduces emissions. Let us be absolutely clear: the Australian people have already voted on this carbon tax repeal bill. They are now waiting for members and senators to honour their commitments to abolish the tax and get the budget back into surplus. As the Prime Minister has said previously to the House: these bills are the government's bill to reduce the Australian people's bills—and so the government and I commend these bills to the parliament.

Mr SHORTEN (Maribyrnong—Leader of the Opposition) (12:51): I rise to speak on the Clean Energy Legislation (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2014 and related bills. In late 2009, this nation was on the verge of making a decision about which we could have been collectively proud. We could have made this parliament a place of inspiration, with a national response to climate change, supported by both government and opposition. It was a policy of both government and opposition that built upon the previous government's decision—a government not of our party—but consistent with the best practice in the world Indeed, this week is the seventh anniversary of Prime Minister Howard announcing his support for an emissions trading scheme...


Gauge the seriousness of concern here by the uncommon language of the conclusion, addressed to the future and to history :

... Today, the parliament has a choice: we can enter the history books as the generation that ignored the perils of climate change; we can be marked down as the generation that surrendered to the selfish, shouting clamour of vested interests; or we can guarantee that Australia does its fair share to deal with this global problem. This parliament can vote for an emissions trading scheme that puts Australia in step with the rest of the world. Today, I give Australians this promise: Labor will always fight for serious, credible climate change policy. We will never surrender to this Prime Minister's bullying denialism and his government's extremism. 

Sadly, we have run out of time to deal with climate change. The decisions made by us, the elected representatives of the people, over these final six years of this critical decade for climate action will have an irrevocable impact on the quality of life for future generations. We all have choices in history, and some are more than important than others. Today, we can embrace the extreme risk of doing nothing, and when, in the future, it is proved wrong, the costs will not be measured by a rye laugh of those opposite, an embarrassed smile or a belated and sincere expression of regret. No apology will suffice. It will be forever remembered as your greatest voting folly. There is no mistake greater. There is no blunder more serious. It is inexplicable. It is unjustifiable, not because we were responsible but because we did not accept our responsibility in this parliament. 

If we embrace the risk of doing something, then we shall take our place in the progressive world supported by a society that saw this issue as political but above politics. This parliament has choices. Each of us here knows that the political process can be exciting and exhilarating. We all know that it can be cruel and exacting. On this side of the House, we know that on the other side of the House and in the other house in this place there are people of character and commitment no less convinced than we are of the severity of the problem. But, for Labor, we will reach for the higher ground, always and constantly. In the blink of an eye of Earth's history, we have seen climate change that is staggering and frightening. In the blink of an eye that responds, let there be no tears for humanity.

AXE THE AXE : We turn in this moment of frustration to a what-goes-around-comes-around drawing made by a local primary school student ten years ago. 


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Post Script : 
After four days of deliberation, The Age publishes this Editiorial:
    
     
To read it click here
    
      
      

16 July 2014

Every gallery in Melbourne, twice

   
This notice was posted on facebook a few days ago at GERTRUDE CONTEMPORARY :

Gertrude studio artist Ross Coulter will be shooting his photographic series "Audience" tomorrow (Tuesday July 15) at Gertrude Contemporary. Based on 70s art documentation photographs, Ross intends on photographing every gallery in Melbourne and would like to extend an invitation to all to participate in the shoot at Gertrude.

What's required? You will form part of an audience by standing around the empty gallery, in which there is no art, imagining watching a performance that doesn't exist while he takes photographs of the group.

How long does it take? 1/2 hour.

Where? 200 Gertrude st, Fitzroy.

When? 1:30pm, tomorrow, Tuesday, July 15

If you have any other questions, feel free to call the gallery.



   photo by Ross Coulter  
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....................................................................................................

Yes Sasha, it was the last act at Conical

Post Script : We roughly recall that in the mid-1970s the artist John Davis (1936-1999) placed an artwork of his at the door of 'every' gallery in Melbourne and made a photo of each such placement. As usual there's nothing about any of this documented online. (Whither History of Art in Australia? Archive, archive archive!)

We'd like to see those photos. Perhaps as a double exhibition with Ross Coulter's "Audition" series?
       
John Davis c.1992 Photo by Penelope Davis

A further post script : 
Seeking more information about that action and those photos, we contacted Ken Scarlett, author of ‘The Sculpture of John Davis: Places and Locations’, published by Hyland House in 1988.

Ken writes : 
"On page 85 there are four BW photos of John’s cylinder placed outside the entrances to the four galleries. The caption reads as follows:

John Davis: The Artist’s Dream (1974) Fourteen ceramic cylinders placed outside fourteen galleries and one bronze cylinder outside National Gallery of Victoria. Fifteen Black and white photographs taken by John Davis.

The four illustrations were of NGV, Realities Gallery (when in Ross Street) Pinacotheca and Sweeney Reed Galleries.

I don’t know if John ever exhibited the photographs and I don’t know of any online images."

Seriously interesting! Lest we forget.

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15 July 2014

Helen Johnson - Failing Up: On Painting and Discursive Stupidity | Psssssssssssssssssssst : John de Silentio



     
This seems a very appropriate moment to recall the artlife of John de Silentio aka John Barbour (1954-2011). 

First, some images of John's 1988 exhibition at 200 Gertrude Street, staged at the same venue as tonight's lecture by Helen Johnson. This will be the ninth in the Contemporary Art Lecture Series presented by Gertrude Contemporary & Discipline.



    
And here's his study for 'The Look of Love',
plus a few others gifted moments from his life of  
Failing Up: On Painting and Discursive Stupidity.







Oh no! Not anot-her :

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14 July 2014

Are we there yet?

         

            
Q : Which frame are we now?

           
A : That one. 
      
  
Q: And which one now?


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Q: And which one now?


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Q: And which one now?


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Q: And which one now?


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13 July 2014

We Are ] Temporarily Exhibited for Removal (

   
Just in from Mitch of Chicken Dinners at The Met, NY :



Beyond Mitch as he makes this photo... beyond the woman with the blue top and dangling earing... beyond the woman with headphones and camera... a wall with a pair of dangling wires and a sign that states Temporarily Removed for Exhibition.

Q : Conceptual Art? 
A : Conceptual Regard!

Years ago your correspondent made special note of this succinct wisdom from the great Lama Zopa :  
The future of every collection is its dispersion.

Hence, this later study for a temporary collection of letters and words and wall panels with a label and passing parade :
       

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12 July 2014

Distracted

       

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08 July 2014

Unimaginable Great South Land

            
LOGOS : The Speaking into Being of the World : 
speech, reportage, information, debate, journalism
      
LOGOS/HA HA : present imperfect

JOURNALISM IS NOT A CRIME : Last month in Egypt, the Australian journalist Peter Greste and his two Al Jazeera colleagues Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed were jailed for 7-10 years for their journalism.  

      
(Keep on) Rockin' in the Free World
We are deeply concerned that this verdict is part of a broader attempt to muzzle the press freedom that upholds democracies around the world.
Julie Bishop, Australia's Foreign Minister
SMH, 23 June 2014
LOGOS Ships Sink Lips : Meanwhile, two boats with several hundred Sri Lankan asylum seekers, mostly Tamil, are reported to have left Southern India bound for Australia. All media questions to Scott Morrison, the Australian Government's Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, are absorbed by him into the Sovereign Silence. 
        
                 
LOGOS LOUDIMUS : The response has been loud.

Michelle Grattan in The Conversation
What is offensive about this government is not that it is pursuing tough policies, but that it is trashing accountability and is so lacking in empathy.
     
The boats did need to be stopped; the budget does require fixing.
           
But an empathetic government would bring some humanity to the first and greater sensitivity to the second, while a less arrogant administration would show more respect all round.
          
The week-long refusal of Scott Morrison and Tony Abbott to give information (or confirmation) about asylum seekers reportedly being transferred at sea - with perfunctory process - and sent on their way to Sri Lanka shows extraordinary disdain for the public’s right to know.
          
It reeks of the masters-of-the-universe mentality.

- full article (here)

Malcolm Fraser on twitter

Malcolm Fraser @MalcolmFraser12 · Jul 3 Handing AS [Asylum Seekers] back to SL [Sri Lankan] navy at sea redolent off handing Jews to Nazis in 1930s
                  
"The case of the disappearing boats" (AGE)
Last night I saw upon the sea,
A little boat that wasn't there,
It wasn't there again today,
Oh, how I wish it would go away

      
-  with apologies to Hughes Mearns
All week, Scott Morrison had been wishing away the little boat from India. The Immigration Minister steadfastly refused to acknowledge its existence or that of its human cargo, 153 Tamil asylum seekers; or that of another boat carrying 50 Tamils, which had come from Sri Lanka. By week's end, it seemed Morrison's wish had come true.

In a high-stakes, high seas operation – which Morrison never confirmed, preferring to call it speculation – Australia set out to deliver these boat people back into the hands of Sri Lanka, the regime they had fled, a country the United Nations suspects of systematic abductions, torture, rape, extrajudicial killings and the "disappearing" of its citizens. Now Australia had "disappeared" their boats. It was as if their odyssey had never happened.


SMH/AGE : Rick Feneley, Jason Koutsoukis, Sarah Whyte
full article here
          
Fran Kelly to Senator Abetz
In an interview with ABC's Insiders program, host Fran Kelly put to Senator Abetz that the transfer of 200 Tamil asylum seekers into the custody of the Sri Lankan Navy was a matter of public interest, and that the government’s lack of transparency aroused concern. She then asked "since when does our government disappear people?"

“We don’t disappear people,” Mr Abetz replied. “What I think every Australian will know and understand is that our professional people in the Australian Navy, in the Australian Border Protection force, treat everybody with due care and respect and according to international obligations.”

SMH : Ben Doherty (here)

LOGOS NULLIUS : Let's muzzle the ABC

Turnbull says he was not consulted on ABC board appointees    

The appointment of conservative columnist Janet Albrechtsen and former deputy Liberal leader Neil Brown to the panel overseeing ABC and SBS board appointments this week sparked fears the government was preparing to stack the board with partisan appointments.

On Friday Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull distanced himself from the appointments of Dr Albrechtsen and Mr Brown as he acknowledge concerns of political influence, but said the nomination panel for ABC and SBS boards is appointed by Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet boss Ian Watt.

''You have to assume that Dr Watt chose Neil Brown and Janet Albrechtsen in his own discretion,'' Mr Turnbull told ABC radio.

''I was not consulted nor was it the intention of the legislation that the Minister for Communications should be consulted on the membership of the panel.'' 

SMH : James Massola, Matthew Knott  ( here )

HA HA HOORAY : Last week, as those boats were setting out for Australia, it was announced that Hieu Van Le would be the next Governor of South Australia.
South Australia's Lieutenant Governor and University of Adelaide graduate Hieu Van Le came to Australia in 1977 as a Vietnamese refugee. His remarkable journey to Australia is the stuff of legend and his achievements within Australia almost as extraordinary.

If there was a defining moment which said to the world that Hieu Van Le would be a leader, it came in a small wooden fishing boat crammed with more than 50 seasick people three days out to sea from Vietnam in 1977.

Read Robyn Mills' full account of The Remarkable Journey here
           

 

Tony Abbott says Australia 

benefited from foreign 

investment because it was

'unsettled' before the 

British

Date

When explaining why foreign investment was so important for a country like Australia, Mr Abbott said the country would be unimaginable without it.

“As a general principle we support foreign investment. Always have and always will,” he said.

“Our country is unimaginable without foreign investment."

            
“I guess our country owes its existence to a form of foreign investment by the British government in the then unsettled or, um, scarcely settled, Great South Land,” he said.

        

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