In praise of the passing parade

My Window_sill. A hole in the wall of life

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Passing parade

Drinker at the Metropolitan Hotel salutes the passing parade of sailors at The International Fleet Review march down George street, to celebrate 100 years of The Royal Australian Navy

Labels: , ,

Sunday, September 15, 2013

What is Art?

Art in Odd Places (AiOP) is an arts project exploring public space. The project was founded by New York artist Ed Woodham.
AiOP wants to bob up in unexpected public spaces, to remind us that public spaces function as “the epicenter for diverse social interactions and the unfettered exchange of ideas”.
This year before the annual NYC festival in October, Art in Odd Places travelled to Australia to bob up in two festivals on the beaches near Sydney: Dee Why Beach and The Corso at Manly.  Dee Why is a very genteel out-of-the-way well-to-do laid-back suburban community beach, Manly is more of a bustling tourist magnet.
The photo above shows artist Terry Hardy presenting his work “One for all / All for one” . What happens, he asked, if a protest is organised with the protester carrying a blank sign, no slogan on the T-shirt, and quietly shouting -- silence.
He attempts , with this project, “to give voice to those around the world who have been silenced”.
Is this art? Is it art if passers-by don't recognise the lone man standing there with a piece of blank cardboard, is art? Do they even register his existence, or the message he wants to not-give. Beach goers just want to go on about their hedonistic indulgence in the sun. Eaters at the restaurants across the road don't stop chewing to consider the message they can't see. Drivers in the traffic are too fixed on the messages in their mobile phones.
There's an ephemeral, transient foundation in projects like this, here today, gone this evening.
As an added bonus to the non-message, Terry is alone. No crowd of fellow silent stationary mimes to support him.
The theme for this exposition by AiOP is “Numbers”. Terry's project is number one. I couldn't help thinking a group of buskers, singing the Three Dog Night song “One is the loneliest number” might have helped passers-by pay a bit of attention to this work. But then, it wouldn't be art, would it?

Labels: , ,

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Mango season

Those of you who know how much the local wildlife torment me will guess what's happened. Six mangoes ripening on the tree this year. Well protected from animal pirates, I thought. Came out this morning and found the possum who has been a stranger all year has come back for its summer holidays. I quickly harvested the rest of the crop, even though they aren't fully ripe. A couple of hours later this mango had fully disappeared, even the stone. Not a sign nor sound of the round-eyed furry imp.

Monday, January 28, 2013

For flood and fire and famine

For gawd's sake, start laughing, this is serious.
Summer in Australia is more than simply a sunburned country. 
This summer, as in most summers, the weather has been extreme in different parts of the country. Devastating floods, hellish bushfires, drought, and even snowfalls. And the really hot weather is still to come.
But this isn't news. I am not trying to be a climate change denier, but Australia has had rough weather for millennia.
As a kid, I remember the country folk who suffered most from the unpredictability of the seasons were still able to have a laugh at their plight. One graphic artist who caught the moods of our country cousins around the 1950s was Emile Mercier.
The media needs to balance the doom and gloom of tragedies with a wry laugh. Its the only way to make sense of what is happeing
Especially on Australia Day

Labels: , ,

Friday, January 11, 2013

Aussie Mcdonald’s rebrand as ‘Macca’s’

At last, something goes our way.
It has been common for Aussie businesses to try to 'Americanise' the way of life down under. Buying our companies, changing our language.Now an American food chain has adopted an Australianism
McDonalds has become an overnight local hero, for recognising a difference between the locals and the their homeland
McDonalds will adopt the name locals have used for decades, changing their name to “Maccas”, even if it is a short term test run.
A common habit in Aussie speak is to change names. A girl named Sharon will be called “Shazza” by her mates. A boy named Barry is called “Bazza “ by his mates. Football is called “Footie”. Sandwiches are called “ Sangas”
What better way to show Aussies how proud we are to be a part of the Australian community than by changing our store signs to the name the community has given us?” said a spokesman
According to Queensland journalist Paul Bleakley McDonald’s is regularly referred to by the nickname ‘Mickey D’s’ in the United States of America. Australia is the only nation in the world that uses the shortened form ‘Maccas’ in significant numbers. Market research undertaken by McDonald’s Australia states that 55% of Australians claim to regularly refer to the business by its colloquial name, provoking the decision to rebrand some of their restaurants over the summer period. 

Labels: ,

Monday, January 07, 2013

Lovely weather for ducks

Artist Florentijn Hofman claims that he isn't high-brow or elitist when it comes to his urban sculptures - he wants to astonish audiences and give them a new perspective on public spaces. His sculptures are big, very big, and Rubber Duck is no exception.
The bright yellow inflatable is five storeys high and five storeys wide

Over summer his duck was moored at Darling Harbour, in the heart of Sydney, to give tourists something to photograph.
Really, the squeaky clean little duckie in the kids bath tub was more impressive.

Saturday, December 22, 2012


You can lead a dog to water, but some dogs just don't see the fun in a big bath.
This little battle of wits and muscle power seen at Brighton beach, in Adelaide