Industrial Cathedral

Industrial Cathedral
"Industrial Cathedral" charcoal drawing on paper 131 x 131 cm Jane Bennett. This drawing was a finalist in the 1998 Dobell Prize for Drawing (Art Gallery of N.S.W.) ; Finalist in 1998 Blake Prize for Religious Art ; Winner of 1998 Hunter's Hill Open Art Prize

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Out of Time

Painting inside the hall of the former cruise ship terminal at Wharf 8, South Barangaroo

plein air oil painting of demolished cruise ship terminal Wharf 8 on the Hungry mile, now Barangaroo painted by maritime heritage artist Jane Bennett
"Out of time " 2010 oil painting on canvas 31 x 31 cm
Enquiries about this painting
A poignant little genre painting. Stopped clocks; a security sign; an abandoned storeroom. Industrial memento mori.
A memento mori, or "reminder of death" is a familiar motif from medieval art. Sometimes a gruesome skeleton clothed in tattered flesh holds a scroll bearing the Latin inscription, "I am what you will be. I was what you are. For every man is this so." Other paintings have more subtle ways of implying the same message - a piece of rotting fruit or an overblown rose in a Dutch 17th century still life; an hourglass or a mirror may mark the passage of time in a portrait.
Every good still life painting should have at least a whiff of mortality about it; a slight sting in the tail; a spoonful of medicine to make the sugar go down.

I found a plaque commemorating the opening of this building - 1999. Not all that long ago, but already it seems like an eon has passed.

Sydney Ports Corporation has just arrived to take possession of this sign. I found its inscription hilarious - it was about how passengers with cardiac pacemakers were not to go through the X ray machines, but had to be bodily searched by the security guards! if they didn't have heart problems to start with they would when they finished; all the excitement might prove too much! It is such an insecure security sign.

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