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

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Painting the International Fleet Review at Barangaroo Part 2

During the recent International Fleet Review celebrations I painted on the Barangaroo wharf, close to my Moore's Wharf studio.  On Wednesday 9th and Thursday 10th I completed 3 paintings of the USS Chosin, HMS Daring and the 2 Australian ships HMAS Parramatta and HMAS Perth. 
My previous post showed the stage by stage development of these 3 canvases.
In this post I show the completed canvases of these ships, as well as 2 canvases I painted on Friday 11th October of their departure from the vantage point of my studio at the Sydney Ports Corporation Headquarters at Moore's Wharf.
plein air oil painting by artist Jane Bennett of HMS Daring at Barangaroo during International Fleet Review
 IFR2A 'HMS Daring at Barangaroo' 2013
 oil on canvas 25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
This is the completed canvas of HMS Daring, with USS Chosin just visible in the background to the right.
plein air oil painting by artist Jane Bennett of HMAS Perth and HMAS Parramatta at Barangaroo during International Fleet Review
IFR3A 'HMAS Parramatta with HMAS Perth at Barangaroo' 2013 
 oil on canvas 25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
HMAS Parramatta (154) and HMAS Perth (157) were tied together, making it difficult to paint the pair from the Barangaroo wharf.
Thursday was blisteringly hot, especially on the bare concrete wharf, but it rained Friday morning during the departure of the first 2 ships.
As you can see from the photo, there wasn't much difference between the grey of the sea, sky or ships - they were all of a piece.
plein air oil painting by artist Jane Bennett of HMS Daring and HMAS Perth departing under the Sydney Harbour Bridge during International Fleet Review
Starting a panoramic canvas of Sydney Harbour from Moore's wharf
IFR5 'HMS Daring  + HMAS Perth departing Barangaroo-painted from Moore's Wharf' 2013 oil on canvas 25 x  153cm 
$4,500
 A few months before, I had started to paint a Sydney Harbour panorama on a stormy day. I wanted to put some ships in the centre, as it seemed a little empty, but I couldn't decide which ships to include.
The sky colour on Friday morning was so similar to this half finished canvas that I decided to use it to record the departure of the last of the ships from the International Fleet Review.

plein air oil painting by artist Jane Bennett of HMS Daring and HMAS Perth departing under the Sydney Harbour Bridge during International Fleet Review
IFR5 'HMS Daring  + HMAS Perth departing Barangaroo-painted from Moore's Wharf' 2013 oil on canvas 25 x  153cm 
$4,500
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
By a stroke of luck, HMS Daring and HMAS Perth departed so close together that I could place them both on the same panoramic canvas. It provided the perfect opportunity to combine the beauty of Sydney Harbour with a historic event.
HMAS Perth was flanked by 2 small black and red tugs, the oddly named 'Rhumb Melba' and 'Rhumb Matilda'.
In the left foreground is the Ausbarge Marine Services boat, from the Barangaroo North Headland Park, currently under construction to the west of Moore's Wharf.

plein air oil painting by artist Jane Bennett of  HMAS Parramatta departing under the Sydney Harbour Bridge during International Fleet Review
 IFR4 'HMAS Parramatta departing under the Sydney Harbour Bridge' 2013 oil on canvas 
 oil on canvas 31 x 61cm
$2,000
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
By the afternoon, the weather had cleared, so that the HMAS Parramatta left Sydney under a glorious cobalt blue sky.

To continue my naval theme, the iconic Hammerhead Crane will be demolished early in 2014, and I have just received permission from the Navy to paint it from the vantage point of Garden Island itself.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Painting the International Fleet Review at Barangaroo

HMAS Perth, HMAS Parramatta, HMS Daring & USS Chosin were berthed at Barangaroo for a few days during the recent International Fleet Review celebrations. I was given access to paint there on Wednesday 9th and Thursday 10th. The ships finally left on Friday 11th October. I painted their departure from the vantage point of my studio at the Sydney Ports Corporation Headquarters at Moore's Wharf.

These will have been the last ships to ever officially berth at Barangaroo. This 22 hectare site, previously known as the 'Hungry Mile' was a wharf for over 200 years.
It's the end of an era and I'm the only one who seems to have noticed.

Marine art - plein air oil painting of USS Chosin at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
 Starting to paint my canvas 'USS Chosin at Barangaroo' 
2013 oil on canvas 25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
I was allowed to drive my car onto the Barangaroo wharf, probably the last time I would ever be able to do so.
I started this painting at about 9am on Wednesday morning.

plein air oil painting of USS Chosin at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
Starting to paint the sea on my canvas 
'USS Chosin at Barangaroo'
2013 oil on canvas  25 x 51cm 
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com

plein air oil painting of USS Chosin at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the sea on my canvas 'USS Chosin at Barangaroo'
2013 oil on canvas  25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
A truck drove up to the gangway and a conga line of sailors passed boxes of provisions onto the ship.
I wondered why the USS Chosin didn't use its ship's cranes instead, but I was grateful to be able to put so many of the crew in the background. It's a bit difficult to see them in the photo below - you'll need a magnifying glass as each figure is only a few millimetres high!
plein air oil painting of USS Chosin at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
The completed canvas 'USS Chosin at Barangaroo'
 2013 oil on canvas  25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
I finished my painting by 11am, and moved further down the wharf to start painting the other ships.

plein air oil painting of HMS Daring at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
 Starting my painting of HMS Daring on Barangaroo wharf
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com

plein air oil painting of HMS Daring at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
My painting of 'HMS Daring on Barangaroo wharf' 2013
oil on canvas 25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
HMS Daring has a very odd motif on its crest - an outstretched hand suspended over a red-hot cauldron. Not so much "daring" as "foolhardy" or at least "bi-polar". It apparently derives from a legendary hero of Ancient Rome who had a major difference of opinion with his emperor and wanted to make a point in a rather drastic fashion.
One of the officers gave me a sticker of the crest, which I have put on the trolley luggage I use to carry my easel in. It's an appropriate motto.

plein air oil painting of HMAS Perth and HMAS Parramatta at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
Starting my painting of HMAS Parramatta and HMAS Perth on Barangaroo wharf
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com


plein air oil painting of HMAS Perth and HMAS Parramatta at Barangaroo wharf during International Fleet Review by artist Jane Bennett
My painting of 'HMAS Parramatta and HMAS Perth on Barangaroo wharf' 2013 oil on canvas 25 x 51cm
$1,400
Enquiries :
janecooperbennett@gmail.com
Unfortunately this post is a few weeks later than intended.
I haven't been able to post anything on my blog or Facebook for a while as I had a car accident and damaged my shoulder not long after painting these. It's been quite frustrating as I still find it a bit painful to paint or even type, but it's slowly getting better.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Painting Thompson Square, Windsor

Thompson Square, the oldest public town square in Australia,  is a charming and unique relic of the colonial Georgian era Sydney. It is the only town square remaining from the original five ‘Macquarie towns’ planned and designed by Governor Lachlan Macquarie .   
Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Starting a plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries 
This Precinct is listed on the Register of the National Estate, the National Trust and also on the NSW State Heritage Register as being of State heritage significance.
Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Starting a plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
Most of the buildings in Thompson Square are regarded as of crucial historical and architectural merit. 

Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Half-way through my plein air oil painting of
Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
The charm of Thompson Square is that it still retains the village square character originally intended by Macquarie.
Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Half-way through my plein air oil painting of
Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
Windsor Bridge is the oldest existing bridge crossing the Hawkesbury River. The caisson deck supports are original and over 130 years old.
It was designed by the Public Works Department and constructed, between 1872-1874, by contractors Andrew Turnbull and William K. Dixon.
Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Half-way through my plein air oil painting of
Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
A plaque that was placed on the bridge to celebrate Australia's Bicentenary quoting the then Minister for Public Works John Sutherland, who opened the bridge in 1874, states:
I hope this bridge will last longer than the life of the youngest child who passes over it today.
Australia's heritage.

Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Half-way through my plein air oil painting of
Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
There are so many lovely viewpoints of the bridge, park, river and Georgian architecture that I found it difficult to choose!
Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Half-way through my plein air oil painting of
Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
I decided to paint a panoramic canvas from the "Doctor's House" on the far left to the "School of Arts" building over the road on the right, with the lovely park in the centre.
Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
Half-way through my plein air oil painting of
Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries

The historic Windsor bridge, just to the right of the "Doctor's House" is linking the middle distance to the background, and the Hawkesbury river can just be glimpsed between the trees.


Plein air oil painting of Thompson Square, Windsor by artist Jane Bennett
The artist painting Thompson Square, Windsor
oil on canvas 25 x 152cm

Enquiries
Painting 'en plein air' in the oldest town square in Australia. I'm following the footsteps of Arthur Streeton, who painted "the Purple Noon's Transparent might" in the Hawkesbury district.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Painters and dockers - Artist in Residence on the tall ship 'James Craig' Part 2

 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Artist Jane Bennett
 Starting my plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" 
 I had originally stored my paints, brushes, canvases, table, chair and easel in the deckhouse of the James Craig, but I realised that the ritual of unlocking and sorting through all my stuff wasted too much time. Now I keep the half-finished canvases on the 'tween deck of the James Craig, and leave the table and easel in a corner on the floor of the dry dock.

 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Artist Jane Bennett
 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock"
 It's quite a hike down from the ship to the floor of the dry dock.

 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Artist Jane Bennett
 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" 
 I choose a position where the ship looms toward me between the walls of the dry dock.
 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Artist Jane Bennett
 Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" 
 I try to make sure that I have enough room for the mast, rigging and the dockyard crane overhead.

 unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Artist Jane Bennett
 unfinished plein air painting of   'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com 
I knew that it would be overcast and so prepared a few canvases with a black imprimatura (underpainting). I find that this gives the clouds a more 3 dimensional quality.
Artist Jane Bennett with her unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock"
Artist Jane Bennett with her unfinished plein air painting of   'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 Portrait of the artist in full PPE (personal protective equipment) regalia.
Artist Jane Bennett with her unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock"
Artist Jane Bennett with her unfinished plein air painting of   'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 Hard hat, hi res jacket, tinted safety glasses, earmuffs and metal capped boots.

Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
Unfinished plein air painting of  'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 There is another tall ship, the HMB Endeavour, in the dry dock, but I can't get too close to her as she is being sandblasted back to her original wood and can barely be seen in the dust haze.


Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
Unfinished plein air painting of   'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 The dark bulk of the 'James Craig' stands out dramatically in front of the threatening clouds.
Marine art - plein air oil painting of  "HMB Endeavour with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
Unfinished plein air painting of   'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 I was worried that it was going to rain. It's risky starting such a large canvas as it takes so many trips back up to the top. The dockyard steps are narrow and a wet canvas has to be carried on its own without otherr luggage.
.
Unfinished plein air painting of  'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 Suddenly I realised that I wasn't the only painter on the dock floor, as 2 white clad men started to haphazardly spray patches of red on the prow of James Craig.
Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
Unfinished plein air painting of   
'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
They cheekily "offer" to pose for me. They don't actually mean it, but I paint them in anyway.
Their figures provide a useful gauge to judge scale. This painterly device is known as "staffage" -  the size of the figures can be compared and contrasted with the size of the ship
Tim Drinkwater, the dockyard manager of the Sydney Heritage Fleet, told me that the painters would only be there for 8 minutes, but that was long enough for me to block in the basic shapes.
 The painters came up later to take photos of my painting of them.
They will be back to finish their painting on Tuesday.
I like the patchy 'work in progress' look of the hull, so I'll try to finish my painting before theirs.

Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of
 'James Craig in drydock being painted'
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm

$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com

 This canvas is in a 'portrait' format - vertical rather than the more usual horizontal one.
Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of
 'James Craig in drydock being painted'
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm

$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 i wanted the ship to dominate the canvas and used the extreme perspective to make it feel as though it is towering over the onlooker, and the prow almost poke you in the eye.
Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of
 'James Craig in drydock being painted'
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm

$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 I am quite short, so I have to fold the legs of the easel up and set it on the ground as I'm not tall enough to paint the masts and rigging with it in the ordinary position.
Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of
 'James Craig in drydock being painted'
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm

$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 At least this way it won't fall over in the wind.
Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of 'James Craig in drydock being painted' 
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm
$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 They keep moving the dockyard crane. Any further to the left and it will be out of the picture. I can only just manage to squeeze it in without it looking too cramped.

Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of
"Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" 2013
oil on canvas 75 x 100cm

Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
 I like the final position of the crane, though, as it won't be obscured by the masts and rigging. It gives the composition a little more drama, as it looks as though it could topple into the dock with a gust of wind.
Unfinished plein air painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My half - finished painting of
"Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" 

2013 oil on canvas 75 x 100cm
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
The end of my first full day painting on the floor of the dry dock.

Marine art - plein air oil painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
My studio on the 'tween deck of the 'James Craig'
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com
Marine art - plein air oil painting of  "Painters with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
 'James Craig in drydock being painted'
2013 oil on canvas 100 x 75cm

$7,700
Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com

Marine art - plein air oil painting of  "HMB Endeavour with 'James Craig ' in Garden Island dry dock" by Jane Bennett
'James Craig and HMB Endeavour in drydock 2'
2013 oil on canvas 75 x 100cm
$7,700

Enquiries : janecooperbennett@gmail.com

Tall Ships - Endeavour to be ship-shape again

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Artist in Residence on the tall ship James Craig Part 1- Sailing to Garden Island

I packed before dawn so that I could hitch a ride with Sydney Heritage Fleet's Tall Ship James Craig on its way from its usual berth at Wharf 7, Pyrmont to the dry dock at Garden Island.
Plein air painting of the tall ship  'James Craig' and Sydney Heritage Fleet's tug 'Bronzewing'  by artist Jane Bennett
My small gouache study of the Sydney Heritage Fleet's tug 'Bronzewing' alongside the 'James Craig'  
I painted a few small, quick gouache studies of the tall ship and tug on board, just to warm my hands up.
Plein air painting of the tall ship  'James Craig' and Sydney Heritage Fleet's tug 'Bronzewing'  by artist Jane Bennett
My small gouache study of the Sydney Heritage Fleet's tug 'Bronzewing' alongside the 'James Craig' 
Enquiries
I will be 'Artist in Residence' at the Garden Island dry dock painting two tall ships, the 'HMB Endeavour' replica and the 'James Craig'.
They will be getting their undersides ship shape in preparation for the International Fleet Review in October.
Plein air painting of the tall ship  'James Craig' and Sydney Heritage Fleet's tug 'Bronzewing'  by artist Jane Bennett
My small gouache study of the Sydney Heritage Fleet's tug 'Bronzewing' alongside the 'James Craig' 
Enquiries
I have stashed my easel, paints, brushes and lots of spare canvases in the deckhouse of the 'James Craig' which will be my studio until its departure from Garden Island on or about 15th June.