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, January 5, 2014

Hammerhead Crane

plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
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The Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island was built between 1944- 1951. 
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
It is still the largest dockside crane in Australia, and one of only 15 still standing around the world.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
Soon there will be only 14, as Sydney's Hammerhead Crane has not been used since 1996 and will soon be demolished.
I've been trying to get access to paint the Hammerhead Crane from Garden Island for over 2 years.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
After a longer than usual struggle with bureaucracy, I finally gained permission to paint there during the Navy "Rap" period.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
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No hiphop is involved with the Navy's "Rap"- it's apparently an acronym for reduced activity over the Christmas holiday period.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries

As the sky became more overcast, I decided to repaint the background for a more dramatic effect.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
I think about these structures as a palaeontologist regards fossils as once living organisms, and to understand them in that light. The specimens palaeontologists collect are not the living creatures but the few skeletons and fragments that have had the good fortune to survive the lottery of decay and fossilization and come out on the other side as beautiful relics.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
The sites I paint are usually relics.
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
My vantage point for my first painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island is from the Fitting out Wharf, just to the north of the crane.

plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
I have often painted the Hammerhead Crane from Mrs Macquarie's Chair and the Woolloomooloo Fingerwharf opposite. From these viewpoints, the Hammerhead Crane looked like an leftover Meccano toy.   
However now I am almost directly beneath it, I feel overwhelmed by the power and scale of this immense crane looming over me.
The mass of scaffolding unfortunately obscures much of the original structure, while fortunately also preventing it from dropping rusty remnants on my head from a great height. 
plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 

The contractors will have to construct a temporary crane next to the Hammerhead, which will take several weeks.

plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
Painting the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island 
Enquiries
The demolition process might take the better part of a year from start to finish, so there will be time to paint many more canvases.

plein air oil painting of the Hammerhead Crane on Garden Island by artist Jane Bennett
"Hammerhead Crane from the Fitting Out Wharf, Garden Island "
2014 oil on canvas 61 x 51cm
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Several of my paintings and drawings of the Hammerhead Crane have won multiple art awards. 
I exhibited my series of paintings and drawings of the Hammerhead Crane at my solo exhibition at the Frances Keevil Gallery "Under the Hammer" 18th November - 7th December 2014.

2 comments:

Jim said...

Marvellous

Jane Bennett Artist said...

Thanks Jim! I'm hoping that I'll be allowed back to paint its demolition.