April get together

This week many of us from the group met at Primrose Park to continue rehousing our materials and equipment in the newly refurbished arts centre and to make plans for our exhibition at the official opening next week.  With this looming over us, and our exhibition committee members on hand, we were delighted with the works received and Lou, Ange and Harriet are outlining where each piece will be displayed at it’s best.

Webmaster Note: Next week I hope to bring you not only pictures of the officials and the event itself but also images of some of our works.

So where are we at with our move back into Primrose Park, and what remains to be done?

All our blenders, mini presses, storage boxes (full of all sorts of necessary bits and pieces), eucalyptus fibre and vats have a home.  The molds and deckles have their own dedicated cupboard with the larger ones being laid flat in drawers and the felts, sponge, towels, rollers and the like have been returned to their open-fronted shelving.

We are thrilled the new bath is in place with all the ‘wet’ supplies stored above and below it.  The two large presses (the white one being brand new, manufactured especially for us) are in place on their own strengthened platform and the drying racks have found a spot near the doors to the surrounding fields.  No more carrying the boards across the entire length of the centre to put our paper outside to dry!

And finally, a huge thanks to the members who put the library back together again.  A resource we couldn’t do without.

The books are back in order, along with all the admin records, catalogues of our exhibitions and so on.

So we’re just about ready to be making paper in our own studio again.

Of course, it’s highly likely that our perfect set-up will get shuffled around a bit once we get into the practicalities of using our equipment.  And there’s bound to be a bit of “Now, where did we put that . .  ?” And even “I can’t find the . . . I wonder if it’s still stored under someone’s bed?”.

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Exhibition: Library Artists’ Book Award Exhibition

Image detail: Judy Hungerford. Going, going, gone. Acquired 2017

Artist books challenge the conventional book format and are a unique art form.  They can use traditional print techniques or digital media, be recognisable in book format or appear as sculptural objects.

The Northern Beaches Library Service presents a biennial Artists’ Book Award and exhibition.  Over 50 artist books from around the world will be displayed at Manly Art Gallery & Museum.  Judges’ selections are acquired to join the Northern Beaches Library Service Artist Book Collection, the only one of its kind in NSW.

Opening event: Thursday 2 May, 6 – 8pm, Manly Art Gallery & Museum
This exhibition will be opened by the 2019 selectors: Geoff Harvey and Katherine Roberts

Exhibition dates: 2 May – 9 June 2019


Webmaster note: I am delighted to have had my book ‘Linear Containment’ selected for this exhibition.

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Dyeing from nature

By Claire Brach

Earlier this week I visited a friend who lives on a 5 acre property for a day of natural dyeing.  Having both attended a 5 day plant dyeing workshop in January we were eager to extend our knowledge, especially working with paper.

Annette very kindly soaked a variety of papers in alum and dried them before I arrived.  We decided that this negated the need for a mordant in our cooking pot.

Eucalyptus Cinerea

Cinerea branches were stripped and the leaves boiled in around 10 litres of water until a good dark orange had leached into the liquid.

We folded and sandwiched our papers with plant fibres (leaves, small seed pods, ferns, lichen, old man’s beard, and so on).  Each folded sheet was separated by a piece of old cotton cloth to stop the imprints migrating and turning into a mass of unrecognisable marks.

This system is a bit like using couching cloths when making paper from pulp.

Our piles of prepared papers, fibres and cloths were then tightly tied between wooden blocks and submerged into the boiling pot and left for 2 hours.

Here are a few of my results:

In the pieces above a resist, i.e. a cloth, was placed in between the folded pages so the left and right hand sides had different plant imprints.  Below you can see some where no resist was inserted and the same plant material printed in reverse on the opposite side.

These results are more vibrant than those obtained in the original class.  It may be that by adding mordant to the paper in advance and allowing it to dry has enhanced the colour pick-up or perhaps it’s just that the cinerea is such a strong colour it will come through anyway. Whatever the reason the prints are sharp and well-defined and we had an excellent day of experimentation.

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Primrose Park Arts & Craft Centre: Official Opening

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PPA: Venue update

We have been in our fabulous renovated venue at Primrose Park Arts Centre for a few weeks now and are gradually settling in and getting all our equipment and materials stored in their new spaces and cupboards.

The studio continues to have work done to it as we approach the official Opening Day and this week the North Sydney Council gardeners came in and planted the garden near the new door and outside the park entrance.

We are so pleased to have been able to contribute to the decision about which plants were to populate the exterior of the building.  The Council have provided kangaroo paw, bladey grass, kangaroo grass, NZ flax and some other grasses – all of which can be used to make paper.

Obviously we have to leave the plants alone through Autumn and Winter so they can establish themselves and then we’ll be able to harvest them in Spring.  How exciting is that.  It really puts meaning into the phrase ‘locally produced’!

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Hazelhurst Art On Paper Award 2019

With prizes totalling $26 000 the biennial Hazelhurst Art on Paper Award showcases outstanding art created with, on or about paper.

Artists compete for the $15 000 major award, the $5000 Young and Early Career Artist Award, the $5000 Friend’s of Hazelhurst Local Artist Award, and the $1000 People’s Choice Award.  The exhibition will present a diverse range of paper works or techniques, including drawing, printmaking, photography, sculpture, paper cuts and video.

Entries close Monday 1 July 2019.  A list of finalists whose work has been selected for the exhibition will appear on the Hazelhurst website on Friday 2 August 2019.  Finalists will be exhibited at Hazelhurst Arts Centre from 21 September to 17 November 2019.

The entry fee is $45 per artwork. There are no size restrictions for works entered into the Hazelhurst Art on Paper Award.

Click here for more information, terms and conditions and entry form.

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Exhibition: Fang Lijun – Facial Recognition

Vermilion Art

is privileged to present:

This contemporary Chinese artist, who enjoys an almost rock star status in China and internationally, currently has his first solo exhibition in Australia.

The set of striking mostly large woodblock prints on show were made between 2013 and 2018.  The grinning and grimacing bald heads, a recurring theme in his work, point to the artist’s concerns for ordinary people struggling to keep hold of an individual identity in contemporary societies, both East and West.

Vermilion Art
5/16 Hickson Road
Walsh Bay  NSW 2000

21 February – 6 April,2019
Wednesday-Saturday, 11:00am – 7:00pm

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