There is so much art to see at the Biennale it’s quite exhausting. Lucky locals get to go back to the different locations many times. We really only saw a fraction of the total, but even then were overwhelmed after a day and a half really. We visited some of the smaller galleries near the Art Gallery of Ballarat. In BOAA on Lydiard I liked these small sculpted pieces, although the theme if memory and loss was dark. She explores the relationship between contemporary art and trauma, influenced by having Holocaust-survivor parents. Those are threads of hair you can see in the first one. And this small piece could be a pile of leaves, or something left from a burnt out home don’t you think?

Cash Brown’s paintings were fun, although they too have a darker theme. According to the artist statement, Golden Years reflects on ageing , the transience of portraiture and memento mori (Latin translation ‘remember that you have to die’). She seems to me to be making fun of Old Master paintings but she says that by employing the same techniques and motifs she is pulling the past into the present, drawing upon symbolism to code new meanings and comment on the visibility of female artists during teh Renaissance and how this is relevant to the current issues faced by women in the arts. I thought they were fun.

After finishing in this gallery we looked through the Mining Exchange and then adjourned for lunch in the gardens. Which we had after a stroll through the Prime Ministers’ Avenue and a look at the volcano in the Robert Clark Conservatorium. Here it is erupting.

Then a quick look at the sculptures around the lake. We didn’t feel up to doing the whole Lakeside Sculpture Walk which would have been a worthwhile endeavour had we had more time. As it was we enjoyed seeing a tiny portion of the work on offer. My favourite was this one by Vince Vozzo. I don’t know its real title but I’d call it Big Mama. I loved everything about it. Here’s a close up of the calm, beatific face.

These others were also fun.

What a glorious location. And what a glorious day we had to explore it.

 

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