Tuesday, 11 June 2013

We have moved!

After a long few days of transferring posts over, I'm happy to announce that we've moved the View Point Handmade Gallery blog over to our website.

click here to go to the new site

I will leave this blog up to maintain the integrity of links, but won't be posting here from now on.

Please be sure to change your bookmarks and I look forward to seeing you over on the new blog!

P.S: we couldn't transfer comments from the old blog, so the new one is looking a little lonely... Feel free to leave it some lovin' in the form of comments ;)

click here to go to the new site

Sunday, 2 June 2013

VPHG Artist Spotlight: Chelsea Brant

It's time for another installment of our Artist Spotlight series; where we find out a little more about the people behind the pieces featured in the gallery. Today we'll be hearing from Chelsea Brant, one of the LaTrobe Visual Arts students currently exhibiting in the LAB RATS show.
Who are you? 
My name is Chelsea Brant, I am 22 years old and will be completing my third year of University in June 2013. I have concluded 2 and a half years of my undergrad at the University of Guelph, Ontario in Canada and am currently finishing a semester exchange at La Trobe University, Bendigo campus. I have worked with many different mediums and been guided by many different professors, and community artists, all in which have greatly helped me to get where I am today. I have always enjoyed art but never expected to take it any further than high school. Once I was offered an elective course in my first year of University with an art course as an option, I fell in love with art. Ever since, I have been learning, evolving and perfecting my artistic journey.
What inspires you?
Going to art galleries is my biggest inspiration. After a day of gallery hopping, I find myself infused with energy to go home and work on my own art. I get so anxious, it becomes difficult to go to sleep.
What are the main medium(s) you work in?
Before temporarily moving to Australia, my main mediums were oil paint and charcoal. However my attention has diverted to trying different types of mediums while here, as well as different ways of presenting my artwork.
How do you describe your work?
My current work is based on an evolving feeling of insecurity, lack of confidence in an art world and frustrations with evaluations in art. It is experimental, yet well thought through and processed.

Tell us about the specific pieces you're exhibiting at VPHG...
The work exhibited at VPHG is a series or 3 different works. Two of which are installation pieces created from images, drinking glasses and water and one of which is a processed self-portrait released on textured paper. This series is meant to peak the curiousity of its viewers, provoke some intentional or unintentional feelings as well as subtly describe my feelings caused and resolved over the period of one semester.
What are you working on currently?
Currently I am holding back from the production of more work until I return to Canada. Once back home, I will be producing abstract paintings for an upcoming shared exhibition with a Toronto artist.

Thanks Chelsea for being a part of the VPHG Artist Spotlight series - all the best for your return to Canada! If you'd like to catch Chelsea's work before she leaves, the LAB RATS exhibition will be on until the  8th of June at View Point Handmade Gallery, 13 View Point, Bendigo. 

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Exhibition - OBJECT: secondlife

The Bendigo artistic community has accepted the OBJECT: secondlife challenge with enthusiasm - twice we've had to restock objects as the entries came pouring in! We still have a few objects left, but be sure to get in touch soon to secure your space.

The exhibition flyer has been finalised; we've moved towards hosting Saturday afternoon openings for the colder months, so be sure to head along to VPHG on June 15th between 4pm-6pm to be a part of the OBJECT: secondlife reveal party!

Friday, 24 May 2013

VPHG Artist Spotlight: - Kane Holahan

To round out our Artist Spotlight feature for the Anatomy exhibition, which finishes TODAY, we've got Kane Holahan in to answer some questions about his creative journey. Although new to exhibiting with VPHG, we clearly picked a great theme to showcase his works - with Kane providing 5 of the pieces in the Anatomy show.
Kane with his oil painting 'Aboriginal culture'
Who are you? Describe your artistic journey...
My name is Kane Holahan. My primary passion to begin with was zoology, in particular snakes and spiders. I have had an interest in biology since i was a very small child but i like many scientific fields. I studied biology and associated subjects in year 11 and 12 as I wanted to be a herpetologist (a scientist who studies reptiles and amphibians). however I must admit, I found the maths side of things quite challenging. I spent my teenage years searching for, photographing, capturing, and studying various species of reptiles and spiders with a small group of fellow Bendigo amateur herpetologists. I kept many species in captivity ranging from Northern Death Adders to Sydney funnel-web spiders. Photographing snakes in the mid nineties was my first introduction to the visual arts. At the same time, I also came up with designs for clothing inspired by nature e.g dressy shirts covered in small interconnected neurons, or microscopic pollen or fractals etc. I put the idea away like hundreds of others and may get it out again one day to develop it, who knows.

In 1999 I started to take poetry fairly seriously or at least the imagery in my poetry got more complex, some say schizophrenic. In the year 2000 I began working with the idea that creating transgenic organisms through genetic engineering would be the next art form. In 2002 I started drawing and oil painting, as at the time I had plenty of ideas but besides writing had no real way to express them. I picked up the camera again too. I am entirely self taught across all mediums that I work in. There is room to develop technique further, for sure. But my belief is that no one can teach you how to think in an original way. University to me, would just be a distraction.

What inspires you?
Even though my art may seem impersonal or cold, My fantasy world is where I feel most comfortable, I am not a very social person.I am motivated by an urge that has shaped and is an essential part of my nature, that is coming up with original ideas, I like to think i have been successful, at least a few times and hopefully more. Along with this, i place high value on building my own identity, having my own style, to be an individual influenced by very few, and for my mind to be free to roam. Despite this, I have been influenced to some degree by other people. Some scientists- Stephen Hawking, Charles Darwin, Kary Mullis. Some musicians- Kurt Cobain, Billy Corgan. I love driving around listening to music and thinking. My favorite album of all time is aenima by Tool. As far as visual artists go, I like the painters H.R. Giger, Francis Bacon and James Gleeson, I also don't mind some of the pop surrealist stuff that I've seen. I got into these painters after I had already developed my core beliefs.

What are the main mediums you work in?Poetry, oil painting, drawing, photography
North Harcourt Tiger snake (Notechis scutatus) Kane Holahan
How do you describe your work?
A lot of my work is dark, even disturbed. Especially the poetry, An apt description was when a man said it is striking but gruesome. I say I try to explore the potential of the physical world and it's not always pretty. But I can appreciate genuine beauty too. sometimes in my world the beauty and horror intermingle. 13 years ago a lady asked me where I want to go with my poetry? I replied " I want to create something beautiful" she gasped, i said " yeah, you cant go beyond the human experience but you can write about the beauty in the brutality".My oil paintings and drawings are a bit tamer, i often use bold colours in my paintings, some could be seen as potentially controversial. My drawings are quite varied, some are spontaneous and some have obviously taken more time to get right. As far as photography goes, I have nature photographs- venomous snakes, frogs etc, and more arty shots where i have set them up or had them altered.

Tell us about the specific pieces you're exhibiting at VPHG

Living, breathing sculpture
(Two-Headed Tiger Snake)
photograph of a sculpture

This piece is an actual neonate Two-Headed Tiger Snake, the first specimen of what I propose to be a knew species of Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus bicephalus) or what I have dubbed the "medusa snake". It survived for a few minutes then died. It represents ideas that I have had for over thirteen years that creating life, and manipulating life through genetic engineering can be an art form, however i prefer that the origins of how this specimen came into existence remain a mystery.

Female internal
Photograph of a sculpture

This is a photograph of a sculpture that i made out of clay, fabric, pins and lace. It's of the female internal reproductive organs (uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries) made to look like it is wearing female underwear. The female internal reproductive organs or any internal organs for that matter are rarely thought of outside the medical profession unless they get diseased. This piece shows them in a new and possibly confronting light. It is time to look below the surface, under the skin to examine them in an artistic way, the organs that make us function and procreate, in this case in a primal, bestial and to some no doubt disgusting, even creepy way. Or maybe its just material to some. It retains a feminine aesthetic but in effect, the viscera has been sexualized.


This is meant to represent a transgenic half human/half lizard organism. A possible future human variant, created in a laboratory and could be the next stage in biped evolution or just an aberration. This species is suited for life high up in the forest canopy. The prehensile tail used to secure itself when foraging in the tree tops and the long limbed broad shoulders and strong upper body strength ideal from swinging from branch to branch. Then again, it may only have skyscrapers to climb in the future. i envisioned this possible future organism existing on a diet of berries, fruit and leaves.

21st century genetically engineered Tarantula with Human eye on its abdomen

Tarantulas are arachnids that belong to the theraphosidae family of spiders. Some species are the largest living spiders in the world. A lot are docile, but some can be aggressive as well, but in a lot of species the venom is relatively harmless but the size of the fangs and chelicerae (jaws) would ensure a painful bite. This piece is meant to be a new species of tarantula that has had human DNA inserted into its genetic material and now has a human eye on its abdomen, A possible future product of the biotech age we now and will soon even more so, be living right amongst.
Tarantulas have eight typically poorly developed eyes and can barely tell the difference between night and day. That's why I have given this photo of a tarantula a human eye, so that it can see any predators attacking from above such as birds etc. Also it is also engaging with the viewer with a part of the anatomy 'the eye' crucial for visual cues and communication in human interaction. So you look at this, to some a "creepy creature" and it is gazing back at you, stirring up conflicting emotions. That was the intention anyway.

What are you working on currently?
I always have many works in progress but some, i don't return to for years. But recent ones that i have been working on is a painting of a half pig/half human getting crucified on a cross, entitled Porcine Jesus (pigs squeal because they are closer to hell). Another one is a bit morbid, it's a self portrait of my decapitated head in a landscape with a real human tooth on my cheek.
I also have political works and works that deal with a variety of other topics. Not all are influenced by biology and science. In fact, a lot aren't. I have between 200-300 ideas,some in progress, to keep me busy for a while, and i come up with new ideas all the time.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

VPHG Artist Spotlight: - Isabelle Kawai Vincent

If I hadn't put myself on an art purchasing ban for the next two months, the piece below by Isabelle Kawaii Vincent would be coming home with me at the end of the Anatomy exhibition, so I think it's fair to say that I'm a bit of a fan... It's my pleasure to be sharing a little of Isabelle's story with you today as part of our Artist Spotlight series.

What inspires you?
I’m a people person so most of my artwork is about the human emotions and how these emotions are expressed through body language, especially the hands. I had observed a person talking to a his mother and her facial expression and posture portrayed a relaxed and confident presence, but I noticed that she was grasping both her hands so tightly that the whites of her knuckle were showing. The person had thought that his mother was doing well, however, the mother’s tense hands was revealing that she was hiding her anxiety. Therefore the hands are the tip of the iceberg for the true human emotions.

What are the main medium(s) you work in?

Printmaking, especially linocuts, painting and drawing. I’m recently developing my photographic skills.

How do you describe your work?
Emotive themes using both western and eastern artistic techniques and styles. There is contrast in understated or blurred pictorial areas to emphasis the detailed focal points.

Tell us about the specific pieces you're exhibiting at VPHG...

I’m using traditional Sumi painting techniques, Eastern minimal composition and sense of pictorial space combined with Western style of tone, detail and form, with Fauvism application of colours. The figure is understated to contrast with the detailed hands, as it is the hands which create emotions and moods; the tip of the ice berg.

What are you working on currently?

I have recently relocated to Echuca and have developed a fascination with the Murray River. I am contently drawn to the watery life form and realise that other people are as well. So I am exploring the Murray River and how people interacts and relates to it. I currently using photography as both a final piece of artwork and references for linocuts, painting and drawings.

Exhibition: LAB RATS (June 1-8, 2013)

View Point Handmade Gallery is excited to be playing host again to some of Bendigo's bright young things!

LaTrobe's 3rd year Visual Arts students; Carol Leigh, Emily Richards-Jones, Lucille March and Chelsea Brant, dubbed the 'Lab Rats' have prepared a visual feast for Bendigo as part of their mid-year examinations. The show only runs for a week, so be sure to pop in from the 1st to the 8th of June!

LAB RATS is an exhibition that has evolved around four different artists all hoping to bring subconscious emotions into the tangible realm. It is an indirect aim at acceptance, perseverance and remembrance. 

Each artist has focused on different mediums and source material yet the majority are highly involved with the process of creation rather than the final production. The element of personal touch is highly emphasized in each artist’s very personal work; dealing with the spirit or the soul, the absence and presence, the frustration of conviction and the reflection on memory. 

Each artist seeks to allow the viewer to interpret their stories, and struggles, while intervening with their own.

Follow their journey via their facebook page and be sure to RSVP to their opening event!

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

VPHG: Artist Spotlight - Alicia Huddy

Today we're featuring the one of my favourite local artists - I'm super excited to have her involved in the latest show at VPHG, Anatomy! Not only is Alicia talented, she's also one of the most effervescent and genuinely warm people I've ever met. I hope you enjoy reading a little more about her arts practice - remember, you've got until the 24th of May to catch Anatomy and see one of Alicia's works in person.
Alicia with a selection of her works
Describe your artistic journey (How long have you been creating, how did you get into it, etc)...

I started drawing and painting from the moment my motor skills were refined enough to hold an object and make a mark. I can still remember the first time I ever got to hold a paint brush. It was like magic watching a vibrant colour dance across the page. It was even more astounding that the image was made with the imprint from the power of my own hands. The incredible thing is that one moment a page can be blank and the next it is filled with beautiful colours and patterns. I became completely obsessed with creating my visions from a young age and perhaps in my younger years was quite anti social as I could always hear a blank page whispering my name. As I grew up I never lost my passion and studied Visual Arts at LaTrobe Universtiy in Bendigo. Once I had completed my Visual Arts Degree I chased inspiration from country to country. I now have settled back in the Bendigo region where I'm working and exhibiting.
An Eye For An Eye - Alicia Huddy
What inspires you?
Nature is my biggest inspiration, I enjoy all the patterns and secret imagery that the world around us creates. I am in awe of the different variations of living creatures that are here on this earth. Each holds its own beauty, magic and spirit.

What are the main medium(s) you work in?
Most of my work seems to be created with spray enamel, acrylic paint, oil paint, oil pastels, markers and resin.

How do you describe your work?
Vibrant, bold and energetic with dark and evil undertones.

Tell us about the specific piece you're exhibiting at VPHG

My piece is called "Kidney Fluid" it's the story of your kidneys trying to run away from the abusive life they are forced to endure.

Lizards Falling from the Roof Into My Dreams - Alica Huddy
What are you working on currently?
A number of pieces I have been commissioned to do. I am also experimenting with some materials and techniques to help stabilise an idea I have for an upcoming show.

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