Hey monkey pope, where have all the blessings gone?

Hey monkey pope, where have all the blessings gone?

We went to see Nic Plowman at the old scout den* art studio he shares with life long friend and fellow artist, Sam Eyles. The million dollar location overlooking the Brisbane River fell into Jugglers hands from Brisbane City Council after the sudden eviction of all 13 Jugglers artists from the 4 leased Queensland Rail houses. Jugglers leased these on a peppercorn agreement lease for around 5 years.

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Art for Free - Shannon Gibbs

Art for Free - Shannon Gibbs

At the end of last year I put it out there to the Universe that I was in need of a cheap studio space for my art. When friends inquired how cheap was cheap, I flippantly said that free would be good! And low and behold, not long after I found myself sitting at a desk, staring out to the river at my new and amazing FREE studio courtesy of Juggelrs art space and very obliging universe.

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Emily Devers Reviews ”Vinegar Tits”

Emily Devers Reviews ”Vinegar Tits”

As those who circulate in creative networks are well aware, our government has recently stated that they’re “prioritising education” by recent decisions to savagely cut the arts from TAFE. After completely cutting funding to the Fine Arts, the New South Wales Government stated that “there are simply no job prospects for students”. Whilst it chills us creatives to our bones that our own government bluntly ignores the value of diverse, fresh, lateral thinking as means to stimulate growth in the creative industries, we go forward and still turn up at the studio every day. As the government keeps it’s blinkers on – it forgets to acknowledge the astonishing amount of people with arts training who also apply their skills of entrepreneurship, collaboration and creative problem solving to a whole range of sectors far beyond the creative industries – which would no doubt be a welcome change. From where TAFE students are standing, things would be looking pretty overcast.

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Meagan Streader at LoveLove and street art beauty

Meagan Streader at LoveLove and street art beauty

Love Love” studios [Teneriffe Brisbane] is an Artist Run Initiative [Andy Harwood, Jay Musk, Sarge Jhogenson] with grunt, showcasing Brisbane’s emerging contemporary art scene. Having had such classy curators as Dhana Merrit [IMA] is indicative of where this outfit is heading, or at least what it is doing. The current “Saturate” group show features a striking colour palette and installation works by emerging and other well known Brisbane artists including Simon DeGroot and Meagan Streader*. Meagan’s interactive installation of movable geometric shaped polymer or light plastic translucent light shades are accompanied by a low volume recording that sounded to me like clunking and clicking metal on metal.

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'Unframed' - an emotional journey

'Unframed' - an emotional journey

John Briggs has a ticking clock going on inside his body that is louder than mine. But who knows. As an MS sufferer with increasing immobility and pain issues, the challenge is how to make it to the next chair, not the next Bali holiday. John has found art as the story telling medium for his journey out of a successful graphic design business with high roller clients into a world of new ‘possibility’ – the name of his show at Jugglers Art Space on Feb 15. Sponsored by Access Arts, the MS Society of Qld and SWARA, John’s pastel works are strongly evocative with viewers held and moved by the emotion released via a staring self portrait, an ‘up yours’ middle finger tied to a “Bluebell” flower and “The Grip” where two figures are locked in a strong embrace. ‘Unframed’ could have been called ‘uninhibited’ with the aesthetic and the emotion on slow release settling down on us like some kind of gentle ‘grip’.

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Two artists, two stories

Two artists, two stories

Conor Timothy O’Shea and Anthony Jigalin painted and installed a body of work at Jugglers Art Space for the 2013 year opening on February 1. How different both men and their art are but the juxtaposition of these works in the Ground and 1st level spaces, and the viewing crowd on the opening night, had some energising dynamism. Conor’s first solo body of work [in the main downstairs space and the side tunnel] of large oils and aerosol on canvas, video and sound installation and text on aluminium are the work of a professional, accomplished, disciplined and talented multi-modal artist.

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There are moments when I know why I am an artist, and then there are moments when I don't - Carmel McGregor

There are moments when I know why I am an artist, and then there are moments when I don't - Carmel McGregor

When I know

  • when I am completely consumed by the desire to draw and paint after waking from a dream at 2 a.m. with the inspiration for my next work of art
  • art is the only thing to which I can give 100% of myself

When I don’t know

  • when I sit and stare at the canvas, unable to make the first mark

These days there are a hell of a lot more moments when I know why I am an artist than when I don’t. But it took me quite a while to realize it.

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There are moments when I know why I am an artist, and then there are moments when I don’t know why - Narelle Carter

There are moments when I know why I am an artist, and then there are moments when I don’t know why - Narelle Carter

As I manoeuver my way through the clutter of my life, walking carefully past the canvases stacked in the hallway, past the shelves filled with art materials, and around the paint trolley and boxes of ‘useful’ objects spilling out from the corners of a room that is desperately trying to function as a kitchen, I sigh deeply and ask myself, “Why did I have to be an artist?”

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There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there moments when I don’t know why - Kerri Hobba

There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there moments when I don’t know why - Kerri Hobba

The “Why” is easy. For the fortune and fame, clearly. We do it not for the love of creating – for that would be foolish in this economic climate, and we are not fools. Nope, definitely not. And we starving artist have to, well, eat. So that would lead me onto the fortune part. Oh yes fellow friends, there are squillions, maybe even gadzillions of dollars to be made from our artistic endeavours. Do not believe the pessimistic propaganda that is fed to us daily – that there is no ready cash to splash around and support a creative industry – paintings are positively leaping off the surviving gallery walls, with those little precious red dots resembling a bad case of measles – oh yes, that is how numerous they are. Bi g bucks, people, big bucks.

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There are times when I know why I am an artist and there are times when I don’t know why I am an artist - Stephanie Munro

There are times when I know why I am an artist and there are times when I don’t know why I am an artist - Stephanie Munro

I think the only way I can answer this question is if I define what being an artist truly means to me. I think the answer to this is unique to the individual. The first time I recall ever feeling art was an inseparable part of my life was when I was about 16, sitting home alone, I picked up my mum’s Pulp Fiction CD and sketched Uma Thurman’s face on a piece of scrap paper.

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There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there are moments when I don’t know why - Jan van Dijk

There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there are moments when I don’t know why - Jan van Dijk

The ‘why’ is the strange part of the whole equation, definitely. I don’t know why, but I had this dream the other night where I’d missed my stop. I was in a strange town, and once I realized I’d missed it I got off the train at the next station intending to switch back, only I see these interesting looking shops over the road and can’t help but get side-tracked. I go over and notice that one of the shops is dedicated solely to selling all kinds of beautifully crafted chess sets from all over the world. There are a few sets displayed in the window that look ridiculously intricate and unique, suggesting further bounty inside, so I lick my lips and lube up my greedy eyeballs for the visual feast that is surely just moments away, but at that point in the dream, I think my brain decides to back out of the deal.

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There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there moments when I don’t know why - Peter Breen

There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there moments when I don’t know why - Peter Breen

Actually, I don’t think I’m an artist. Not yet. I hope I am one day but not yet. I am 61 but I live in hope that one day I might feel like calling myself an artist. Before I’m dead. And I wonder why I am doing what I am doing as the acting director of an amazing arts collective [Jugglers] and making sure taps don’t leak and bills are paid and rent is collected and everyone is happy and doing art and shows are hung and work is sold and artists are paid . Maybe that’s it and my art is to help the artist be the artist and juggle everything. Maybe I am a producer artist! I did have a solo show in 2010 where I tried to explore what patients might feel during x ray procedures. It was a lot of work drawing and painting and the final event was worth the effort.

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Art Up

Art Up

There are moments when I know why I am an artist and then there moments when I don’t

At the moment I don’t know why I’m an artist. Maybe it’s not so much that I don’t know, it’s more like I shouldn’t be, because it isn’t sensible, right? I don’t have any money right now. This sucks a bit. I’m 42 and I have no money. I should be kissing my husband goodbye in the morning, packing the kids lunches and sending them off to school and then watching D.O.O.L. all day in between putting on another load of washing, while my man brings home the bacon… uh, on second thought maybe not. This sort of lifestyle was never going to be for me.

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Two Pages

Two Pages

Jugglers has been interested in writing about its experience of the arts for a few years now. Our pieces to date have been introductions to shows, short promotions and personal blogs by Randal Breen, Sam Eyles, Abby Whittaker, Megan Cope, Peter Breen and exhibiting artists. The current Jugglers “ Interscapes” show [May 20 – June3] curated by Ashleigh Bunter includes her reflective essay “Examining how the recent digital technology revolution has altered and shaped our perception of reality, space and landscape” and is available from Jugglers or Ashleigh. The CD also includes installation images and music by Peel St Band and Inland Sea. This is part of the new move Jugglers is joining where art process and installation is given more time than opening night and more weight than sales. “Two Pages” is easily accessible on the front page of our website [www.jugglers.org.au ] and will feature themed short essays. We have drawn some inspiration for our idea from Art Forum’s 500 Words. www.artforum.com

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Melody Woodnut

Melody Woodnut

Melody Woodnut took a free Jugglers studio at Norman Park in March as part of the 103 Project Experiment. She is used to ARI’s and travelling and making do and creating wonderful things out of her endless creative energies and imagination. She has put down her roots in  Iceland as an artist in res too. She has experienced art for free and the limitations of doing art for the people [no charge folks!] and wonders at the corporate world’s paradigm of controlling people’s harmless art that impacts on the AFL Grand Final parade. Not that people care. It is the footy after all! Ai Wei Wei might have some sympathy for her but as yet she has only had herself stuck to the wall not stuck in a cell!

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Art for free

Art for free

Melody Woodnut took a free Jugglers studio at Norman Park in March as part of the 103 Project Experiment. She is used to ARI’s and travelling and making do and creating wonderful things out of her endless creative energies and imagination. She has put down her roots in  Iceland as an artist in res too. She has experienced art for free and the limitations of doing art for the people [no charge folks!] and wonders at the corporate world’s paradigm of controlling people’s harmless art that impacts on the AFL Grand Final parade. Not that people care. It is the footy after all! Ai Wei Wei might have some sympathy for her but as yet she has only had herself stuck to the wall not stuck in a cell!

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Art for Nothing

Art for Nothing

e just completed three weeks at the Jugglers Norman Park Studios and found it a very rewarding experience. I enjoyed working with the talented Mr Anthony l Walker and found the actual studio space quite pleasant and inspirational to create in. This is a unique opportunity and came at just the right time for me.

I primarily work in pastels and oils, usually doing figurative and portraiture painting. One of the oldest forms of art is the creation of lifelike images from coloured pigment and portraiture is a prominent means of doing this, it is a form of art I really enjoy. I find that the energy and scope of a good working studio is very important to the process.

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