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29 Jan 2021

Grounds of the old ReservoirGrounds of the old Reservoir

In the evocative environs of an old water reservoir in Sydney's Paddington this January a most unusual event took place. Curated by Janet Laurence, it was a part of the Sydney Festival and comprised art installations, musical performances and a durational performance piece by my good friend Julie Vulcan Balmoral Village in the Southern Highlands of NSW was hit particularly hard by the fires. Julie and her partner's house was fortunately saved but their property was largely reduced to ash.

Bags of ash from Balmoral VillageBags of ash from Balmoral Village

Hanging of fragmentsHanging of fragments

You can see more of the performance, as well as a visual diary documenting the regrowth on Julie's Instagram: mzvvv.

Photographer Robert Knapman (Insta: robertknapmanphotography) has documented one of the other performances which took place Jan 27th in the same space, that of the Sydney Red Rebel Brigade

There were also quite a few art installations scattered around the rather majestic space, including a collection of charred branches with ceramic inclusions by Juz Kitson and a a large faggot of burnt branches inscribed in white with comments about the the devastation wrought. At the conclusion of the two week event these were gathered up and carried through the streets of Sydney

Installation by Juz KitsonInstallation by Juz Kitson

Installation by Dirt WitchesInstallation by Dirt Witches

Participatory work by Tony AlbertParticipatory work by Tony Albert

Water bar by Janet LaurenceWater bar by Janet Laurence

Janet Laurence created a Water Bar for the event with multiple glass pieces containing ash water collected from many areas affected by the December/January/February fires. Tony Albert's piece invited guests to select one of the many bird species decimated by the fires and draw their version in white on a black ground. The Reservoir itself is such a strong architectural entity that it did take some effort to appreciate the depth and gravitas of the artworks installed. I only managed the one visit but it was definitely worth that effort.

A portion of the historic reservoirA portion of the historic reservoir


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The Latest Happenings in my World

This blog is where you will find my latest news. It can range from posting images of progress of the current commission to art crit to political or social commentary, both national and international. Anything, basically, that's commanding my attention and I feel is worth sharing with you, my reader. Enjoy. My previous blog can be found at