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

Monday, September 27, 2010

Marine Art Exhibition at the Australian National Maritime Museum

Australian National Maritime Museum 
I will be exhibiting these paintings at the
Australian Society of Marine Artists exhibition at the "Wooden Boat Festival"

WHEN: From 10 am - 4pm Saturday 16th October and Sunday 17th October 2010
WHERE: at the Australian National Maritime Museum 
EVENT: Wooden Boat Festival


These are some of the paintings which I will be exhibiting on the October 16-17 weekend with the Australian Society of Marine Artists exhibition at the "Wooden Boat Festival"

The Australian Society of Marine Artists are a group of artists and others interested in marine and maritime art : painters, lithographers and printmakers, sculptors, model-makers and historians. Every painting style from traditional to contemporary, realist to abstract is represented : ships, seascapes, maritime history and heritage.
plein air oil painting of Spirit of Tasmania sailing on Sydney Harbour by maritime artist Jane Bennett
'The 'Spirit of Tasmania' departs for the last time from Darling Harbour' 2006 oil painting on canvas 25 x 31 cm
Sold
$880
Enquiries about similar paintings:
janecooperbennett@gmail.com

This painting is of a landmark in the history of Sydney Harbour - the final departure of the 'Spirit of Tasmania 3" from the East Darling Harbour Wharves in October 2006.
The 'Spirit of Tasmania 3" , (nicknamed 'Spot' by all the wharfies) was later sold to an overseas shipping line and I have heard that she has been renamed and is in use as a ferry in the North Sea. 
The 'Spirit of Tasmania" numbers 1 and 2, are still in Australian waters, but their journeys are between Melbourne and Devonport. Occasionally they come to Garden Island, Sydney Harbour dry dock for repairs and maintenance.
The Sydney Heritage Fleet's tall ship, the 'James Craig' and Wharf 7, Pyrmont can be seen in the background.
The last journey of the 'Spirit of Tasmania 3' 

It was an atmosphere reminiscent of the last day of school. People running around taking photos and swapping addresses. Manic excitement, regret, and a strange undercurrent of foreboding about what the future may bring.

To add to the sense of occasion was a touch of glamour. Added to the usual queue of cars and bikes waiting in the sun was a line of lovingly restored vintage cars, bound for a rally in Tasmania. In one of the many paintings that I started that day, I featured a green Rover and its patient driver in the foreground. I certainly had enough time to paint them as they were sitting in the queue from 9.30am to 2.30pm when they were finally allowed to drive on board. The Mitchell Library, State Library of NSW, later acquired this canvas.

Everything that wasn't nailed down was hauled off and dragged on board. I mean 'Everything that wasn't nailed down' absolutely literally and not as a lazy cliche. I had been storing some canvases and easels in a little shed and suddenly had to leap up from my wet painting and rescue them from making an unscheduled visit to Tasmania. I nearly lost my cup of coffee which I had left perched on a concrete barrier when forklifts started to load all of the concrete onto the ship.
plein air oil painting of tall ship HMB Endeavour sailing on Sydney Harbour by maritime artist Jane Bennett
"'Endeavour ' Tall ship race -Australia Day" 
oil painting on canvas 20 x 25cm
$550
Enquiries about this painting:
janecooperbennett@gmail.com



A close up of the 'HMB Endeavour', one of the 'Tall Ships' making its way back to its mooring after the Tall Ships Parade on Australia Day 2007.
This was painted from the East Darling Harbour Wharves (now called Barangaroo) while the area was still a working port.
plein air oil painting of tug sailing on Sydney Harbour by maritime artist Jane Bennett
'The Tug 'Karoo'  2006 oil painting on canvas 28 x 36 cm
$990
Enquiries about this painting:
janecooperbennett@gmail.com

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Art exhibition : Recent Paintings of Barangaroo by Jane Bennett

From Barangaroo to Double Bay :
Paintings Now on Display at the Frances Keevil Gallery until 8th October 2010


plein air oil painting of  demolished cruise ship terminal Wharf 8 at  Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"I saw the number '8' in red... "2010  
oil painting on canvas  51 x 76cm
$4,200  
Sold
Enquiries about similar paintings
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
See my post : I saw the number '8' in red...



plein air oil painting of  demolished cruise ship terminal Wharf 8 at  Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"Out of time " oil painting on canvas 31 x 31 cm
$990
Enquiries about this painting

See my post : Barangaroo terminal -'Out of time' 


plein air oil painting of  demolished cruise ship terminal Wharf 8 at  Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"May Open without warning" 
(Inside the loading dock of the former Cruise ship Terminal at Darling Harbour 8)  
2010  oil painting on canvas 51 x 76cm

$4,200
Enquiries about this painting
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
Painted from a similar viewpoint as "May close without warning..."
plein air oil painting of  demolished cruise ship terminal Wharf 8 at  Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"MAY CLOSE WITHOUT WARNING (Inside the loading dock of the former Cruise ship Terminal at Darling Harbour 8)"
oil painting on canvas 51 x 76cm
$4,200 
Enquiries about this painting
janecooperbennett@gmail.com

plein air oil painting of 'Maersk Gateshead' at temporary cruise ship facility Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"Night, 'Pacific Jewel'  from the bridge of the Maersk Gateshead" 2010 
oil painting on canvas 61 x 91 cm
$6,600
Enquiries about this painting

plein air oil painting of 'Pacific Jewel ' at temporary cruise ship facility Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"The Pacific Jewel arrives for the first time 
at the new temporary facilities at Barangaroo" 2010 
oil painting on canvas 
36 x 46 cm
$1,800
Enquiries about this painting
janecooperbennett@gmail.com







plein air oil painting of 'Pacific Jewel ' at temporary cruise ship facility Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"The Pacific Jewel arrives for the first time 
at the new temporary facilities at Barangaroo"
Diptych Left hand canvas 2010 
oil painting on canvas 25 x 51 cm each 
Total image size 25 x 102cm

Each canvas : $1,400  Diptych : $2,800 
Enquiries about this painting

plein air oil painting of 'Pacific Jewel ' at temporary cruise ship facility Barangaroo by Artist Jane Bennett
"The Pacific Jewel arrives for the first time 
at the new temporary facilities at Barangaroo"
Diptych: Right hand canvas 2010 oil painting on canvas 25 x 51 cm each 
Total image size 25 x 102cm

Each canvas : $1,400  Diptych : $2,800
Enquiries about this painting

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Tribute to 'The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work' by Alain de Botton

Theory versus Practice
Alain de Botton, I feel as though I have been unknowingly illustrating your fine book all of my working life!
Naturally as a realist plein air painter, the chapter about the realist plein air painter spoke to me most directly. Very few art critics and even fewer philosophers have ever valued the empirical point of view, i.e. the experience of what actually happens as opposed to their pristine theory of what should happen. I could not name a single other living art critic or philosopher who has bothered to observe from close quarters what is actually involved in the creation of a work of art. The labour involved, the struggle with materials and the entire process is always taken for granted or even treated with disdain. The work of art is expected to appear as if by magic on the gallery wall, and increasingly the 'idea' or theory is given the respect formerly due to the artist's skill and the actual 'work' is carried out by nameless assistants. 
De Botton is the only writer in recent memory to bother to accompany an artist on the long journey from the idea to the completed canvas on the gallery wall. Some art critics have visited the homes or galleries of wealthy and famous art collectors, but de Botton is certainly the only one to visit the home of an ordinary person who happened to recently purchase a painting to try to understand their motives and observe their interaction with their new purchase. De Botton is also the only writer with the patience to watch an artist at work and the only one to attempt to understand what that work actually involves.This wonderful chapter is full of respect, tenderness and wryly understated humour, and I was deeply moved by it.

For more of my responses to this book see my page on this blog : 'From the Hungry Mile to Barangaroo' where I quote from his chapter on cargo ship spotters.
Enhanced by Zemanta

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Barangaroo : Red Square, the Drill Rig and a little archaeology

Barangaroo: Red Square 
Painting inside the former cruise ship terminal
plein air painting of Wharf 8 at Barangaroo by industrial heritage artist Jane Bennett
"Red Square" unfinished oil painting on canvas 31 x 61cm
Enquiries about similar paintings
A work in progress, still on the easel.
plein air painting of 'Red Square' Wharf 8 at Barangaroo by industrial heritage artist Jane Bennett
 'Red Square' oil painting on canvas 30 x 103cm
$2,000
Sold
Enquiries about similar paintings
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
This canvas is still a little unfinished, but you can get the general idea of what I'm attempting to do here. It's an interior versus exterior painting, playing with light, transparency and reflections. Unlike the other doors in the loading dock, which are solid slabs of brilliant scarlet, these are translucent fluted sheets that both reveal and conceal the view. 
The "Red square" to the left was the bright scarlet entrance to the passenger walkways allowing access to the cruise ship


Construction/De-construction 


In 20th century art history a famous quote about early abstract art was "The red square is haunting painting", about the work by Kazimir Malevich and similar Russian painters involved with "avant-garde" movements such as Constructivism and Suprematism during the 1920's. The red square has certainly haunted this building! It reminds me how quickly the 'new' and 'modern' passes into history. It is ironic how "Modernism" is now a historic term referring to the art of 50-80 years ago, and the architect of this former wharf has either deliberately or unknowingly raided its vocabulary!
De-construction of Constructivism! Art chasing its own tail.
In the background, realism intrudes into the chilly geometry with the two drill rigs of the geophysics team, Coffey and Macquarie Drilling.

The Drill Rig at South Barangaroo
plein air oil painting of drill rig at Barangaroo by industrial heritage artist Jane Bennett
"The Drill rig" 2010 oil painting on canvas 31 x 41cm 
 $1,400 
Enquiries about this painting
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
A core sample is being taken on South Barangaroo, to make sure that there are no nasty little surprises when construction starts.


Incidently, all of Barangaroo is landfill.
When I painted on the K.E.N.S. Site (the "Kent, Erskine, Napoleon and Sussex street block " which is now the new Westpac headquarters) next to Moreton's pub (known as the 'Big House' by the wharfies) I saw steps that were unearthed that once belonged to an early 19th century Fingerwharf, and must have roughly coincided with the original shoreline. They were halfway between Kent and Sussex Street - so anything west of Sussex Street is fill.



Don't forget your toothpaste!

A couple of the men from Coffey and Macquarie Drilling have worked at the same sites that I have painted at! These include the former A.G.L. Site at Mortlake, developed by Rosecorp (which is now known as 'Breakfast Point') and the Carleton United Brewery site at Chippendale, which is still underway. One wet and miserable day at the Carleton United Brewery site, I was offered some of the old bottles and jars to paint by the archaeologists, instead of struggling through the mud laden with an easel to paint the chimney in the pouring rain. A few weeks later, the archaeologists generously made their spare finds available for the construction workers to souvenir. I suppose that an old brewery site wouldn't lack bottles! I took a small selection of 19th century ceramic and glass bottles, including perfume jars, ink bottles and a big brown 'Geneva' bottle (mother's ruin or gin), but one of the men on the drill rig team had a real prize - a small ceramic jar with lacy craquelure that once contained an early 19th century version of toothpaste! When we realized that we both were proud owners of these relics, I brought my paintings of the CUB finds and the bottles to Barangaroo and he brought in his toothpaste jar for me to paint.
My Carleton United Brewery still life can be seen on my 'Urban Landscape' page on this blog.
This is their 2nd last hole before the drill rig team pack up and leave Barangaroo.