David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.


27 February 2014

Five Artists Withdraw from Sydney Biennale in Protest

            

Statement of Withdrawal from 19th Biennale of Sydney

26 February 2014


We are five of the 41 artists - Libia Castro, Ólafur Ólafsson, Charlie Sofo, Gabrielle de Vietri and Ahmet Öğüt - who signed a letter to the Board of the Biennale of Sydney in relation to their founding sponsor, Transfield.

We make this statement in light of Transfield’s expanding management of Manus Island and Nauru immigration detention centres. We act in the wake of the death of Reza Berati from inside Manus Island detention centre on February 17. We are in urgent political circumstances with a government that is stepping up their warfare on the world’s most vulnerable people daily.

We have received indications from the Board of the Biennale and Transfield that there will be no movement on their involvement in this issue. In our letter to the Board we asked for action and engagement, but we are told that the issue is too complex, and that the financial agreements are too important to re-negotiate.

And so we make this statement from a critical juncture of political urgency and artistic autonomy.

This is a statement of our withdrawal from the 19th Biennale of Sydney.

We have revoked our works, cancelled our public events and relinquished our artists’ fees. While we have sought ways to address our strong opposition to Australia’s mandatory detention policy as participants of the Biennale, we have decided that withdrawal is our most constructive choice. We do not accept the platform that Transfield provides via the Biennale for critique. We see our participation in the Biennale as an active link in a chain of associations that leads to the abuse of human rights. For us, this is undeniable and indefensible.

Our withdrawal is one action in a multiplicity of others, already enacted and soon to be carried out in and around the Biennale. We do not propose to know the exact ethical, strategic or effective action to end mandatory detention, but we act on conscience and we act with hope.

We have chosen to redirect our energies into multiple forms of action: discussions, workshops, publications, exhibitions and works that will continue to fuel this debate in the public sphere. In this, we stand with our local and international communities that are calling for the closure of Australia’s offshore detention facilities. We ask for their active support in keeping this issue at the forefront of our minds, in the warmest part of our hearts, in the most urgent of discussions and in the most bold of actions, until the detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru close.

We withdraw to send a message to the Biennale urging them, again, to act ethically and transparently. To send a message to Transfield that we will not add value to their brand and its inhumane enterprise. Finally, and most importantly, we withdraw to send a message to the Australian Government that we do not accept their unethical policy against asylum seekers.

We ask that the Biennale of Sydney acknowledge the absence of our work from the exhibition. As the Biennale has offered to provide a platform and support for our dissent, we request that our withdrawal be registered on the Biennale website and signposted at the physical site of our projects. In the pervasive silence that the Government enforces around this issue, we will not let this action be unnoticed.

We act in solidarity with all those who are working towards a better future for asylum seekers. We hope that others will join us.


Libia Castro
Ólafur Ólafsson
Charlie Sofo
Gabrielle de Vietri
Ahmet Öğüt

Contact: 2014workinggroup@gmail.com

       
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25 February 2014

NOW & THEN

  
MELBOURNE NOW : the grand local-produce art expo at the National Gallery of Victoria (until 23 March).

THEN POSTERS : six posters commissioned for Melbourne Now by Warren Taylor of The Narrows.

Jenny Grigg / Brent Harris
Susan Jacobs / Yanni Florence
Warren Taylor / Elizabeth Newman
Stuart Geddes / Tony Garafilakis
Matt Hinkley / Peter Tyndall

Fabio Ongarato / Marco Fusinato


click images to enlarge 
Above, on the walls of NGV-A Federation Square.

Below, on a hoarding at Smith Street, Collingwood.
  

photos courtesy Warren Taylor 
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22 February 2014

Statement from The Minister

  
Missing Words 
Cast Long Shadows
          

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21 February 2014

Re. ee (2) : ''Weeeeee

      
Yesterday, Mr Abbott was asked whether, given this week's mayhem, there was a risk that more asylum seekers could die on Manus Island. (SMH)

''
Weeeeee will not succumb to pressure, to moral blackmail. Weeeeee will ensure that these camps are run fairly. They will be firm if necessary."
        
 
- Tony Abbott, We-er 
  Prime Minister, Government of Australia
             
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Moral blackmail? Or moral principle?? That Weeeeee sounded so familar....
   
"Weeeeee will decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come".

Prime Minister John Howard at his 2001 election campaign policy launch, 28 October 2001.
  

- John Howard, We-er 
  then Prime Minister, Government of Australia
             
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18 February 2014

Re. ee

       
Refugee

Detainee

Transferee
         
Redescribee Killed on Manus Island
    

- Scott Morrison, Redescriber,
  Minister for Immigration, Government of Australia
             
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17 February 2014

Passion Play

     
My name is Emma Plane (b. 7 October 1906).



This is me with three of my friends, we of the Rood Frame Players, seen here in a recent still life tableau vivant :
    
Instruments of the Passion 

presents 

Plane To See


collection: Theatre of the Actors of Regard    
   
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14 February 2014

Valentine Greetings

         
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      It is indeed quite plane to see
         
 
    I want you to love none but me!
  

    
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13 February 2014

ACCA Archive _ 1987 _ Dagger Definitions

   

    
Today, the ACCA Archive features Peter Tyndall's 1987 ACCA survey exhibition Dagger Definitions : Selected Works : -1952-1987-
         
There's a brief text by the artist click here and some associated images here.


Also re-published are 3 reviews of the exhibition by Robert Rooney (The Australian) here 
Gary Catalano (The Age) here
Terry Smith (Times on Sunday) here

Reading the three today - Three Views of Emptiness, to quote a much later exhibition title - Gary Catalano's anxious defensive projection seems (to this reader) so puzzling sad :
There is little I can say about either Peter Tyndall's or John Walker's works. Tyndall's paintings are cool and immaculately fabricated, but they do little more than ridicule our expectations (Whose expectations? Yours? Mine?) of finding mystical significance in works of art.
from Gary Catalono's 'Making a monument to the commonplace', The Age, Melbourne, 19 August 1987.
       
Is this a dagger definition of my own devise I see before me, the handle toward my mind?
   
Formless spiritual. Father, Word and Holy Breath. Allfather, the heavenly man. Hiesos Kristos, magician of the beautiful, the Logos who suffers in us at every moment. This verily is that. I am the fire upon the altar. I am the sacrificial butter.

Dunlop, Judge, the noblest Roman of them all, A. E., Arval, the Name Ineffable, in heaven hight, K. H., their master, whose identity is no secret to adepts. Brothers of the great white lodge always watching to see if they can help. The Christ with the bridesister, moisture of light, born of an ensouled virgin, repentant sophia, departed to the plane of buddhi. The life esoteric is not for ordinary person. O. P. must work off bad karma first. Mrs Cooper Oakley once glimpsed our very illustrious sister H. P. B's elemental.

O, fie! Out on't! Pfuiteufel! You naughtn't to look, missus, so you naughtn't when a lady's ashowing of her elemental.

Mr Best entered, tall, young, mild, light. He bore in his hand with grace a notebook, new, large, clean, bright.

-- That model schoolboy, Stephen said, would find Hamlet's musings about the afterlife of his princely soul, the improbable, insignificant and undramatic monologue, as shallow as Plato's.

John Eglinton, frowning, said, waxing wroth:

-- Upon my word it makes my blood boil to hear anyone compare Aristotle with Plato.

-- Which of the two, Stephen asked, would have banished me from his commonwealth?

Unsheathe your dagger definitions. Horseness is the whatness of allhorse. Streams of tendency and eons they worship. God: noise in the street: very peripatetic. Space: what you damn well have to see. Through spaces smaller than red globules of man's blood they creepycrawl after Blake's buttocks into eternity of which this vegetable world is but a shadow. Hold to the now, the here, through which all future plunges to the past.
From James Joyce's ‘Ulysses’, an account of one person in one place on one day, 16 June 1904, published 2 February 1922.
       
Macbeth (Act 2, Scene I)

Is this a dagger which I see before me,
The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee.
I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.
Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible
To feeling as to sight? or art thou but
A dagger of the mind, a false creation,
Proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?
I see thee yet, in form as palpable
As this which now I draw.
Thou marshall'st me the way that I was going;
And such an instrument I was to use.
Mine eyes are made the fools o' the other senses,
Or else worth all the rest; I see thee still,
And on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood,
Which was not so before. There's no such thing:
It is the bloody business which informs
Thus to mine eyes. Now o'er the one halfworld
Nature seems dead, and wicked dreams abuse
The curtain'd sleep; witchcraft celebrates
Pale Hecate's offerings, and wither'd murder,
Alarum'd by his sentinel, the wolf,
Whose howl's his watch, thus with his stealthy pace.
With Tarquin's ravishing strides, towards his design
Moves like a ghost. Thou sure and firm-set earth,
Hear not my steps, which way they walk, for fear
Thy very stones prate of my whereabout,
And take the present horror from the time,
Which now suits with it. Whiles I threat, he lives:
Words to the heat of deeds too cold breath gives.


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(after Lucio Fontana)
   

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(after Tommaso Laureti Siciliano)


        

12 February 2014

ACCA and Regardism


Ashley and The Regardists :

Performance of Regard
at Image Codes, ACCA, 1985. 
Courtesy ACCA Archive
    

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10 February 2014

speak spoke pig poke

   

    
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08 February 2014

9 measures of regard

      
The Daruma Muralists, 
a sub-set of Theatre of the Actors of Regard :
           

Daruma 

Nantembo

Daruma Muralists (above)
   
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06 February 2014

Transformations: early bark paintings from Arnhem Land

      
Not to be missed!
  
at The Ian Potter Museum of Art
University of Melbourne
until 23 February 2014
        
Attributed to Makani Wilingarr
Ngarra minytji (Ngarra ceremony design) 1937
natural pigments of bark, 127 x 64.2 cm
The Donald Thomson Collection, the University of Melbourne and Museum Victoria
© Courtesy Jimmy Burinyila, Ramingining 
      
For more, see and read New lines of flight by Henry Skerritt (Art Guide Australia).
         

 photo : Viki Petherbridge  
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04 February 2014

A Dictum (after Rudyard Kipling) for Young Artists


If you carn't spell
         
  
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03 February 2014

Regardless, false anaLOGOS/HA HA or not?


bLOGOS/HA HA watched with interest Friday's Senate Inquiry : Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee - Public interest immunity claim.

Although not required to do so, the Minister for Border Protection chose to attend.



We were particularly engaged by the following line of questioning from Senator Hanson-Young 

Regarding 1. : 'Operation Sovereign Borders' (Govt)
Regarding 2. : 'Border Security' (Ch. 7)
    
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Senator HANSON-YOUNG: My next question is to Customs. There was a comparison that the minister used just now about other operations which Customs are involved in that they would not want publicised. Do you as the secretary of Customs have to approve activities in relation to the Channel 7 show Border Security? 

You can read the initial response to this question here, on page 30 of the Hansard record. Next, a little further into this :
          
Mr Pezzullo: We collaborate with the Channel 7 group of companies on Border Security. I am not— 
      
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: Regardless,
 
you have just admitted to having a deal with one television show where they are allowed to have access to border— 

Mr Bowles: I do not think it is an admission. 


Mr Pezzullo: We have an arrangement with Channel 7. I am not aware—I will just quickly check with my director of media. We have no arrangement with any other company that I am unaware of? Good—thank you. No, we do not. 


Mr Morrison: Mr Pezzullo has also said that the techniques relating to law enforcement are edited and suppressed. But, as you know, what we are talking about here today goes well beyond just techniques. These are ongoing live operations that we are running here, and the telecasting of how our people may respond or not respond in particular situations, where they might do it and where they might go—to provide a 'how to' guide to the smugglers, which is what these documents would reveal—I think would put those people at risk. I am still not clear what the alternative position would achieve that you seem to be promoting. 

      
Mr Pezzullo: Indeed, Minister, if I can add a very specific example. This is a historically accurate example; I will need to slightly slide over some of the operational details. The equivalent would be, if we apply the analogy that I think your line of questioning is taking us to, having new, real-time vision of someone being nabbed. A cartel overseer back in Latin America— 
         
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: I would like to interrupt you for a moment because I have not asked that and— 

    
Mr Pezzullo: But is a direct analogy, if I may— 

    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: No, it is not a direct analogy. 
    
Mr Pezzullo: and we would not want to tip them off. 
    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: Can I please finish? 
      
Mr Pezzullo: Of course. 

    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: It is not a direct analogy because the documents asked for in this order for the production of documents for which public interest immunity is being claimed are from as far back as September. 
    
Mr Pezzullo: And the second part of your 
motion— 
    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: As far back as September. That was when the first— 
    
Lt Gen. Campbell: If I might interject, that is not far back at all. That is very recent operational information. 
    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: I have just been told—you can correct this if you would like to correct the record—it was a few months. Could you clarify how long between when those recordings happened in the airport and when they go to air? 
    
Mr Pezzullo: I will take advice. 
    
Mr Morrison: You are comparing apples and oranges. 
    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: It is not live. 
    
Mr Morrison: These are two different— 

Senator HANSON-YOUNG: There are documents in here that we have asked for in relation to incidents that occurred months ago and we are still being told we are not allowed to have them, despite the fact that pages and pages of information has come out from other sources in relation to those incidents. We still have received no acknowledgement from the government, such as in relation to the case where a boat had its hull ripped out because of an operation on the water. We still have not had any information from either the minister or Angus Campbell in relation to this. That happened months ago—and if that was not a serious enough event to clarify with the Australian people what was going on then what is? 
    
Mr MORRISON: You have raised a number of issues there, if I could respond. First of all, your comparison between things happening at our airports and the safeguards put in place by Customs and Border Protection to protect the integrity— 
    
Senator HANSON-YOUNG: I am asking what difference— 
    
Mr MORRISON: Senator, if you will let me respond. The integrity of those techniques and so on are protected, as shown by the evidence that has been provided to you. To draw an analogy between that and what we are doing with Operation Sovereign Borders would be false—and I think that is the evidence that has been provided to you. In terms of time frames and Operation Sovereign Borders—a very new operation—as General Campbell has just said, disclosing the sort of information you are seeking would provide the how-to guide. It is very recent information in the context of that operation. 

You also make reference to the fact that other reporters are out there reporting things. That is of no surprise to the government at all. What is different about the government choosing to confirm, or to not confirm, any particular matter that relates to operations carries greater weight in terms of how smugglers might use that information. We understand that and know that to be the case. So it does not surprise us that journalists and others will go and write stories: it is a free country; they can and should do so—they are doing their job. We do not have an issue with that. The question before us is: what is the government going to officially confirm or officially comment on. And the operational commanders of this initiative have advised that disclosing that information puts people at risk, and that is why we are not going to do it. 


extract from Hansard :
Parliament of Australia : Senate
Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee:
Public interest immunity claim
Friday, 31 January 2014
Canberra




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01 February 2014

Doctorate of Regard

           
        

apoLOGOS/HA HA to Maurice Bonnel  

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apoLOGOS/HA HA to Dr. Ernest Regard  
    
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