Tag Archives: Canberra

Portraiture…the “extreme sport” of art!

On a number of occasions over these past few months, at various times, it has struck me the high degree of challenge there is in portraiture, particularly in aiming to capture the likeness of an individual.  Surely portraiture is the “extreme sport” of art because of that challenge. 

A few examples which have set me thinking…  Driving in traffic up from the Spit Bridge towards Mosman, I happened to briefly glimpse to the right of me, and in the time it took me to glance back to my daughter I commented that the person in the car that had just past us looked like a friend of ours.  All I had seen was the briefest glimpse of a silhouette, I didn’t recognise the car, and sure enough my daughter confirmed that they were subsequently waving to us.  Likewise waiting with a friend at Canberra airport recently to meet another friend for a reunion, as we sat in the lounge watching the passengers disembark we happened to notice “someone’s arm pulling on a jacket” and in that one gesture we knew it was our friend.  

Then today…visiting a couple of artist friends (Rhonda Meryl-White and Masako Gordon), amongst many topics covered over lunch we were then looking at some images on the computer when a close up of one eye only was shown on the screen, I immediately identified the model.   Our power of recognition from even the smallest amount of information amazes me.  It’s actually quite daunting if you think about it too much however I also find it quite fascinating and part of the thrill of portraiture in getting that likeness.

“Affinity” Exhibition launched…

Dear friends and friends of my work

A very special thank you to all those who were able to make it along on Saturday evening for the official opening of our “Affinity” Exhibition.  Thanks also for the many well wishes sent through to me on the day.

The evening was a resounding success with over 300 guests attending on a superb Sydney evening.  Visitors came from as far away as Brisbane and Canberra, and for Sydney, even crossing two bridges to be there to support and witness a milestone evening for all 5 artists involved.

This was the first time each artist, including myself, had been able to showcase a significant body of work so a major event for us all.  It was also wonderful that our first major exhibition was being held at Artfocus Gallery, having all met through painting or being associated with the gallery and studio.  My special thanks to Lyn Hammond and Anne Bourne (owners of the gallery) and the team including Carly and Rick at AFG, for their wonderful support and encouragement.  I could think of no other place I would rather launch.  Unlike most gallery owners, Lyn and Anne are both professional artists as well and know intimately what it means to an artist to put themselves out there, and what it involves to create a body of work for such an exhibition. 

All artists sold works on the night and I was absolutely delighted to discover a colleague of mine had purchased a number of my pieces.  It is such a heartwarming experience to connect with another through your art.  For me personally, where it is possible, to know and meet who is buying my work means a lot to me.   Pictured with me in front of his new triptych is Ian Wamijo, my lovely new collector.  I am not sure who is happier, and maybe that is it, the feeling is mutual and that is the very special connection.  I hope always to feel this way when one of my paintings goes to another, and that they should feel similarly about my work.  I am delighted to have a couple of other collectors interested in the series of “Trunks” so commissions have been mentioned.  “Morning in the Saddle” is being considered for a corporate reception area so that is very exciting.  (See Landscapes – Traditional).

All in all, it was a great night and one that I will remember for many years to come.  However the day itself was not without some qualms and if you would like to read about that, please visit my website and “Artist Diary” for an insight into this artist and her journey with the lead up.

The exhibition runs until Thursday, 26 November, so if you do get a chance to pop into the Gallery and have a look, then call in and see Lyn and Anne.  Artfocus Gallery and Studio is at 1 Powells Road, Brookvale and opening hours are Mon-Fri 10am – 4pm and Sat 10am – 2 pm.

It is very exciting to be “officially” launched and stay tuned for the next update!  Also, feel free to visit my artist diary from time to time to check out what projects are underway and my journey with them.

Again, many thanks for your support.

Best wishes, Marion

Born at 6.00 pm! Exhibition opened.

Last night was the official opening of my first major exhibition and a great success.  Along with four other emerging female artists and friends, it was wonderful to finally be launched.  With over 300 guests, family and friends, collectors and friends of the gallery, the evening was perfect with Sydney turning on one of its balmy Summer evenings.  While we each had entered exhibitions before, this was the first exhibition that any of us had ever organised and the first opportunity to showcase a significant body of our work.

To see so many people come along to celebrate this milestone for all of us and with sales happening, commissions being discussed, it was very exciting. 

The day itself was another story though…  After a morning spent at the gallery finalising the preparations for the evening’s opening, it was home for some quiet time and gathering of self in preparation.  Yet for me, this was no quiet time.  I needed to prepare a speech to open the evening and I was unable to relax.  I felt like I was being squeezed and  I got a real sense of being birthed.  A train of events had been set in place for some time now and the moment was nearing, quickly.   I was in the birthing canal, the contractions had started and come what may at 6.00 pm I was going to arrive.  There was no turning back, try as I might,  and I was coming feet first! 

And my saving grace, to paint.  Domestics were not “doing it for me” and yet I knew that if I just got out my paints and painted for a while, it would make the difference.  And so that is exactly what I did.  It was so easy for me to get caught up in all the hype of the lead up and the ‘what ifs’ that go through your mind, however I knew that if I just sat down and painted it would transform my being.  And it did.  I had recently commenced painting a portrait of a beautiful friend, with a gentle soul and so it was wonderful to sit “with her” and to paint her hair.   That portrait will always have a special place in my heart, for it was like sitting with a silent friend as a witness and presence in my moment of truth.

And while I sat there painting two of my closest friends arrived from Canberra.  They had driven to Sydney especially for the evening to offer their support and witness my “birth”.  It was then time to get ready,  so transforming from behind my black painter’s apron to my little black dress, it was off to what turned out be a wonderful evening and memorable event in my life.  It was also special to have my husband and daughter helping on the evening and giving their support to this moment for me.