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Archive for the ‘My Photos’ Category

Whenever I visit the White Rabbit Gallery in Chippendale, I’m reminded of what a privilege it is to be able to view this astonishing collection of contemporary Chinese art. The gallery is owned and funded by Judith Nielson, the exhibitions are curated by David Williams, and entry continues to be completely free.

The Dark Matters is currently on display, showcasing select pieces with a primary focus on black, white and grey tones, with only the occasional splash of colour. Williams has curated a cohesive, brilliantly presented exhibition, with artworks perfectly complemented by their surroundings.

As always, we began on the top floor.

Yang Mushi’s Grinding is a collection of over a thousand hand-hewn, black lacquered wooden blocks. The polished aluminium base makes it difficult to distinguish where each piece ends and its reflection begins…

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Contemporary Chinese art is often full of angst and pain, so it was a joy to view husband and wife Kung Wen-Yi and Ko Yu-Cheng’s Water Drops, a Buddhist-inspired work which “celebrate(s) rain as an analogy for creative imagination”…

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One of my favourite works of the exhibition was hidden away behind the elevators!

Chen Chun-Hao’s Twelve Animals – Rabbit, Monkey, Chicken are “drawings” made with headless nails, hammered in from the back. At first glance, they appear clever, but on closer inspection, they’re actually genius…

The details of the animals  – hair, fur, feathers, mouths, eyes and ears – are all carefully “drawn” by the shadows cast by the nails…

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Chang Nai-Wen’s AIP-PF is a series of three marble sculptures, each enlarging and enhancing the details of the previous one, adding extra “pixels” (detail) with each step, much as a 3D digital printer would do…

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I think art succeeds when it elicits a true emotional response in the viewer. Wen-Ying Huang’s Searching II is an intriguing and haunting work, created on a computerised loom which enabled the artist to “hide” a second image woven with reflective thread, and revealed only when illuminated by flashlight. In its unlit form, it’s deceptively drap and grey.

When I shone a torch over the fabric, I felt shaken and teary – the glowing scene of armed soldiers and someone cowering in fear made me feel as if I’d exposed them with my light. Powerful stuff indeed, at least for me.

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This is just a tiny snippet of The Dark Matters exhibition at the White Rabbit Gallery. Because of the focus on black, it’s difficult to capture many of the pieces in photos, so it’s definitely worth a visit in person!

White Rabbit Gallery
30 Balfour Street
Chippendale NSW 2008

Open 10am to 5pm, Wed-Sun.
The Dark Matters exhibition runs until 30 July 2017

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Cash Palace Emporium in Leichhardt is closing down, and everything is 50% off the marked price. If you’re a lover of ethnic and vintage textiles, I highly recommend that you race over there as fast as you can. The small store is packed full of treasures, carefully selected by legendary owner, Elaine Townshend.

You might recall that I bought my kantha quilt coat there last year. It’s made from a vintage Indian quilt, which in turn had been handstitched from reclaimed saree fabric. It’s the ultimate in upcycling and I wore it constantly last winter…

There is a wide selection of clothing and semi-precious jewellery on offer…

One-off carpet bags, each constructed from hand quilted fabric…

I bought a vintage 1920’s formal kimono in stunning condition and turned it into a jacket and shawl…

In the back room there are fabrics, cushion covers, bedspreads, quilts, wall-hangings, shawls and more. I may have lost my head a little over these Japanese prints…

I’ve been sewing furoshiki cloths…

…and practising tying them. It’s an indulgent but joyous way to use up scrap vintage kimono silk…

I’ve had a run on juggling balls, so I’ve been sewing squillions more. I adore my friends – they’re always enthusiastic about anything I throw at them (no pun intended)…

Here’s my own personal set – fat origami cherubs made with scrap salvaged from a vintage child’s silk kimono…

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Cash Palace will be open for another eight weeks, so if you’re in the area, do pop in and go treasure hunting. It’s a true family affair – Elaine’s son Luke and daughter Fleur are running the shop while she’s in India, and her granddaughters are often there helping out as well. Say hi for me if you pop in, I’ve been haunting the place!

Cash Palace Emporium
139 Catherine St
Leichhardt NSW
(02) 9569 5977

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One of the things they tell you in a guided meditation is that each breath is unique and if you pay attention, you can learn to notice it. I haven’t quite got there yet.

What I have noticed on my morning walks is that the water in the Iron Cove Bay looks different on every single day. The colours change, the movement of the tides vary, the reflections shift from one moment to the next.

Big Boy and I watch the light bouncing off the waves and marvel at how different it is compared to the previous day, week and month. The very texture of the water can appear to change noticeably over the course of our walk; sometimes the sun will pass over and produce a magical effect that will last mere minutes.

Today (and all the photos in this post are from this morning), the drizzly skies produced light blues and greys…

…and magical sky mirrors…

…and perfect rainbows, both in the clouds and the water…

…and amazing glass-like silver tones…

After more than six months of walking this route, it continues to bring me enormous joy and a blessed sense of calm. It’s the perfect exercise, because it never feels like a chore.

And as I watch people jogging past us, plugged into their headphones, I have to fight the urge to stop them and say “Don’t miss this! It will never look exactly the same again!” ♥

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Daily Walk Photos

I’m up to day 220 of daily walks and, according to my iPhone, I’ve taken over two million steps since August last year. Thankfully, on most weekday mornings, Big Boy still walks with me.

Here are some recent pics from our early mornings on the Inner West Greenway and the Iron Cove Bay Run. We’re blessed to have such lovely public spaces within minutes of home!

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Our route takes us under several bridges, and I’m always intrigued by the play of light on the water. Last week, the City West Link overpass created amazing stripey reflections. I walk under this bridge almost every day…

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If you look carefully, you can pick the two shades of reflected light – white and gold…

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In the morning, the sun is gentle and shaded, but in the afternoon, it glitters like diamonds on the water…

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It has rained every day in Sydney for weeks, which has made walking tricky (I’ve had to resort to the treadmill on a couple of occasions). But all the extra water has created lush, fairytale trees…

..and glowing green lichens…

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Overcast skies produce mangificent watercolour hues…

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Pete said I needed to disclose that the photo below wasn’t taken in a woodland setting – it’s a gutter in Surry Hills during a rain shower (I cropped out the cigarette butts)…

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Captured on a rare sunny day a few weeks ago, these aluminium boats are known locally as tinnies. To my eyes, they make the photo quintessentially Australian…

The best coffee on our route is made by Sammy at the UTS Rowers Club…

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We’ve become avid cloud watchers, but we’re still rubbish at identifying them…

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I now understand why artists paint the sea in blues and greys, because this is exactly how it looked this morning…

Finally, my wonderful son, reflected in one of the many mirror puddles left by the recent deluge…

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Wishing you all happy days! ♥

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Food and Wine

bollie

We’ve had some amazing wines lately.

I’ve been opening carefully cellared bottles to share with my sons, both of whom love the older vintages. Ever since the boys were little, I’ve put bottles aside in the hope that we could drink them together one day. So this is, quite literally, a dream come true…

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Anita, Alison, Jenny, Helen and I are new-old friends.

We reconnected at our 40 year class reunion in May and have eagerly sought out opportunities to spend time together since. We met up at Central Park last week, ate yum cha at Din Tai Fung and then spent an hour charging around Daiso like the crazy old women we are.

After buying everything from fillable tea bags to battery-powered erasers to microfibre polishing slippers (and face massagers and detox foot pads, each item costing just $2.80)…

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…we dropped into the Koi Dessert Bar for cake and coffee…

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Apart from being delicious, this funky new cafe offers some of the prettiest treats Sydney has ever seen…

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My brilliant friend, the Spice Girl, took me to this little Taiwanese restaurant in Chatswood. It specialises in street food…

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The menu made me laugh out loud…not sure stewed pork trotters need to be labelled as a “non veganism meal”…

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Speaking of the trotters though, they were ridiculously good…

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I took Pete back to try these steamed pork belly buns (3 for $10) and he loved them…

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I’ve had trouble all year sourcing chestnut flour, so I was pretty excited to find it at a deli in Five Dock last week. I bought the last two bags they had and made up a batch of my favourite brownies (plus a tinned peach cake for my mum)…

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These are the most expensive brownies I make, and every time I put a batch together, I feel incredibly grateful that we can afford such luxuries. Each tray uses 750g (!!) of Callebaut Belgian chocolate, and that’s before the imported chestnut flour, butter and eggs. They’re decadent, rich and wickedly delicious. We make a point of sharing them around…

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The sun is shining in Sydney today and life is grand.

I hope you’re all eating and drinking and making merry too!

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