HILLARY from Marrickville
I love the Southern Highlands arts trail. The generosity of the artists allowing us into their work spaces. The opportunity to discuss with them their work & inspirations. The great information available from the organisers re the artists, their work & location. The map available is a necessity and a great planning tool. I have been doing the arts trail for 5 years now and I love finding new spaces to visit and also going back to our favourites to see what’s new. A great time to visit and a great way to see the Southern Highlands.
PENNY from Moss Vale
When people ask if I am an artist I sadly say no. A few weekends ago, I went on the Southern Highlands Art Trail to experience others’ art works. Apart from being reminded of the huge range of talent I was also reminded of another purpose of the art trail; connecting with community and in that process was accidently reminded that perhaps that I do have an artform after all.
At Studio 2 I talked to fellow trail followers about haberdashery in Tel Aviv.
At Studio 4 I talked to the artist about our mutual appreciation for the unique character of the individual eucalyptus leaf, missing bits from insect bites and markings from various stages of decay. I later texted him a photo I had taken recently to which he responded, ‘It is indeed a very beautiful leaf.’
At Studio 6 I talked to the artist about black kites that carry live embers in their beaks to start fires.
At Studio 8 I talked to a photographer about charging his electric car from solar panels on his roof.
At Studio 17 I talked to a portrait artist who claimed he had a method to teach portrait painting to anyone, even me.
At Studio 20 I talked to the artist’s partner about the collections of staffs in the corner of the room, separated from the exhibition. Turns out he carves them from pieces of wood such as sheoak that he finds in the bush after fire. The carbon is removed to reveal the distinct markings underneath. I showed him my walking stick that a friend carved for me when I had a dodgy knee. He took me to a corner of his garden to a laden with ripe cumquats. He popped one in his mouth and encouraged me to do the same assuring me it was worth it. I trusted him and did so. As I crushed these orange balls with my back molars my mouth was filled with cheek clenching sourness followed by a mysterious sweetness.
Finally at Studio 26 I followed the arrows to the back of a nondescript Moss Vale cottage to a garage with a heavy black curtain instead of a garage door. As if on cue, the artist stepped through the curtain and began a hilarious commentary on his artworks; lamps made from ostrich eggs.
Now if anyone asks me if I am an artist I will say yes. When they ask what medium, I will answer, a dying art, the art of conversation.MORE >