Mica Grange Autumn Sculpture Exhibition 2017
May 5, 2017

In my last post about my recent visit to Mica Grange on Easter Saturday 2017, I concentrated on the garden. This post is about the autumn exhibition of sculpture and garden art.

There’s new work to see and new artists  – as well as the work of artists who have previously exhibited here.

The fairy realm has been extended – fairy houses were for sale.

 

 

The work of local potter, Ellen Hansa-Stanyer, featured strongly this year.

Her work is very playful.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I don’t know if the plastic fish came with the water feature.

 

 

Hmmmm…..not sure about the red.

This sculpture was intriguing. The figure is working out how to stick a wing back on the aeroplane.

Does anyone fancy replacing their children with this life size pair?

 

 

 

 

 

Maldon Art Walk 2017
March 18, 2017

Today, Friday, was a perfect autumn day and what better way to spend it than to wander around the nearby historic town of Maldon appreciating the art displayed as part of the 2017 Maldon Art Walk. From the 12th to the 26th of March, the work of local artists is on display in shop windows and in public spaces. The work of 100 artists is displayed in 50 venues. Tiny, little pots rub shoulders with the sausages at the butchers, a large charcoal drawing struts its stuff at the hardware shop, a painting of a carousal is a joyous addition to the premises of the local ice cream maker and a small, metal boat rolls on barbwire waves in the garden shop.

The following photographs are of a small selection of what is on show. I didn’t have to worry about reflections from shop windows with these works.

This dress is made of chicken wire, yet it looks soft and filmy – I love it.

I also love these beautiful, hand dyed felt jackets

This courtyard with the old pomegranate tree brought back memories of a lazy lunch with relatives under its shade years ago.

The court yard provides the setting for this amazing installation….

………….. as well as these sculptures.

On the far wall of the dining room of the historic Kangaroo Hotel is this painting of the Trentham Falls.

My friends and I enjoyed a hearty lunch in the dining room.

Guildford Cemetery
August 21, 2016

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The purpose of my visit to the Guildford cemetery on a gorgeous August day last Tuesday was to photograph some of the graves belonging to Swiss Italian families. I had been to the cemetery with Katie a couple of times before. Katie waited expectantly at the gate – this place means rabbit hunting!

Swiss Italian families settled the region around Daylesford, Yandoit and Guildford in the 1800s. They farmed the land, built houses and outbuildings from the local stone and each family had their own recipe for making bull boars – a dense meaty, herby, garlicy sausage.

 

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Some of the graves are tucked away in the far corner of the cemetery.

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This family was dogged by tragedy.

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DSCN5010This woman was kept busy raising three families in her lifetime.

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A number of graves bear the name Delmenico……..

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and Passalaqua.

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The Barassi family produced one of Guildford’s most famous identities.

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I moved on to other graves. This new grave pays homage to the role of Australian Rules Football in this person’s life. Josie Connell was a Western Bulldogs supporter.

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The violets growing on this grave scented the warm air.

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This headstone brought back memories of my Aunt Anne. Guildford Gus was one of her favourite hosts on local community radio.

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At the main intersection in Guildford, Ron Barassi, Australian Rules Football legend, gazes across to……..

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…………Guildford’s only remaining hotel.

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The Gold Coast
August 14, 2016

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I am guessing that not many posts about the Gold Coast commence with a photograph of the bronze head of this man, Peter J. Lacey, who was an Australian Surf Life Saving Champion from 1963 to 1984 and also, a Gold Coast business pioneer whose interests included real estate and development. This man encapsulates two main aspects of the Gold Coast – beach culture and a love of high rise apartments.

The Gold Coast which stretches south of Brisbane in Queensland to the New South Wales border is one of Australia’s premier tourist destinations. Early in August, I visited family who now live there having moved from Castlemaine to be closer to their daughter and medical facilities.

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In September 2015, I was holidaying in the historic fishing village of Port Fairy – what a contrast to the bustling, high rise, urban development of the Gold Coast!

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I admired these sculptures in the Broadwater parklands. The seagull kept an eye on me but had no intention of moving from its vantage point.

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I sent a text to my cousin saying I would meet her near the big horse in Victoria Park, Broadbeach.

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My cousin took me to the botanic gardens where my aunt volunteers. I liked the mosaic highlights on this statue.

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I loved this mosaic panel at the centre of the sensory garden.

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My cousin also took me on a day trip to O’Reillys in Lamington National Park. The sculpture commemorates the rescue of the survivors of an aeroplane crash by Bernard O’Reilly in February 1937.

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This photograph gives an idea of the subtropical rainforest which Bernard O’ Reilly and other rescuers had to navigate to reach the site of the plane crash.

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Alpacas are irresistible. My cousin’s children relished the opportunity to feed them.

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The alpacas had this magnificent view whilst they munched.

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I couldn’t ignore this dramatic skyscape dwarfing the high rise.

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Chewton Sculptures
May 14, 2016

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A new sculpture has taken up residence in Chewton. The life size timber carving sits perched on the front fence of American born artist, Richard Yates. The sculpture represents Mrs. Frances White who had a lucky escape in 1948 when part of the backyard of her home caved in. Mrs. White saved herself from falling by grabbing hold of a tree branch as the earth slipped away to reveal an old gold mine shaft 8 feet wide and 80 feet deep. Mrs White lived at 153 Main Rd. in what was formerly the Francis Ormond Mine manager’s house.

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The old mine manager’s house

On the other side of the road is an earlier sculpture created by Richard Yates.

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“Their shining Eldorado

Beneath the southern skies

Was day and night for ever

Before their eager eyes.

The brooding bush, awakened,

Was stirred in wild unrest,

And all the year a human stream

Went pouring to the West.”

“The azure line of ridges,

The bush of darkest green,

The little homes of calico

That dotted all the scene.”

“I hear the fall of timber

From distant flats and fells,

The pealing of the anvils

As clear as little bells,

The rattle of the cradle,

The clack of windlass-boles,

The flutter of the crimson flags

Above the golden holes.”

‘The Roaring Days’

by Henry Lawson 1889

If you want to know more about Richard Yates, the sculptor, check out this YouTube video:

Autumn Sculpture at Mica Grange
April 20, 2016

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Birds of all sizes and materials were a particular feature of the sculpture exhibition at Mica Grange this autumn.

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I enjoyed the variety of mosaics.

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I was intrigued by this work with…….

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……….all these screws joined together.

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I admired the elegance of this object.

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The brightly coloured roses set this white sculpture off perfectly.

 

Spring Sculpture at Mica Grange
December 5, 2015

 

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It is a treat being able to view sculpture in a rural garden setting. The different exhibitions held at Mica Grange on the slopes of Mt. Alexander create opportunities to view new works – some by artists seen previously and some by new artists.

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I wonder what these children are pondering. I think they would look great gazing into a small pool with fish or frogs.

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Who would have thought an earwig would be the subject for sculpture? And it is so lovingly crafted.

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It is amazing what can be created using chicken wire, old metal and reclaimed metal shelving.

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I think these frocks are a delight.

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Masai warriors on the front lawn – Why Not??

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This piece is stunning.

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I photographed these works when I visited Mica Grange on Sunday, the 15th of November 2015.

 

Fridgehenge
March 30, 2015

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 ‘Beware of the Fridges

These are wild undomesticated fridges

Approach with Caution

Do not Feed the Fridges’

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Local primary schools had really got into the spirit of things putting a lot of time and effort into their fridges.

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 ‘Welcome to our mouldy old fridge.’

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 Winters Flat Primary School was into avoiding waste and saving energy in a big way.

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 As you can see, I went bananas over Chewton Primary School’s fridge. I found the imaginary contents of the ‘preserves’ in the jars irresistible.

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 Castlemaine North Primary School’s fridge ‘Balinese Food Offerings’ was covered in coloured rice grains.

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 ‘Danger, Do Not open

Sculls Inside’

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 ‘You are what you eat!’

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Fridgehenge was a project of the Fringe Festival which ran concurrently with the Castlemaine State Festival from the 13th to the 22nd of March.

Mica Grange In Spring
December 23, 2014

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 This was my second visit to Mica Grange in Sutton Grange this year. I visited in autumn and now in spring on the 9th of November.

The spring experience was quite different to the first visit – there was a new sculpture exhibition and the spring flowers were blooming.

If you look at the photographs in autumn, you will see how dry the country was whilst in spring, the ground was carpeted with green.

I have decided to publish two posts on the spring visit – this one featuring the new sculpture exhibition and the second, the flowers.

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 Wire wrens hop about in Bede’s vegetable patch.

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I tried to be creative with some of my photographs.

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Mica Grange provides a grand setting for the sculptures.

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 These ceramic poles with their whimsical figures attracted my admiration.

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I think this group would need to be purchased as a set as they represent the scattering of dandelion fluff.

Elysium – Taradale
November 17, 2014

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 I am not interested in tuning into the horse racing of Melbourne Cup Day so I spent Tuesday, the 4th of November doing something I really like – visiting two open gardens in the nearby township of Taradale. These gardens were open as part of the Castlemaine and District Festival of Gardens.

‘Elysium’ was the garden I visited in the morning and is the subject of this post.

The property is situated in the heart of the township and is bordered by the fences of neighbouring properties and a sheep paddock.

The garden has two distinct sections – a new section developed over the past 16 months with a moon gate as the back drop and an older established section which has a large pond.

The owner has created a no dig garden where plants have been planted into raised garden beds which are heavily mulched. Many of the trees have been planted as more mature specimens.

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 A view across the new garden to the moon gate and……

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 looking back through the moon gate to the new garden.

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Colour in the new garden.

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 The pond is a dominant feature of the older garden.

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 This comical emu is placed in one of the densely planted beds of the older garden. Shady deciduous trees provide dappled light for hellebores which had finished flowering and the peonies which had just begun flowering or were still in bud. Hellebores and peonies are a rare sight in Castlemaine whose climate is not well suited to these plants.

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 Lots more colour in the older section of the garden.

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A deciduous tree clad in its fresh spring leaves.