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.

29 June 2015

TAR : Let Us Paint the Face of the Public

I have seen, and heard, much of Cockney impudence before now, but never expected to hear a coxcomb ask two hundred guineas for flinging a pot of paint in the public’s face.

    - John Ruskin writing about James Whistler (1877)

A pot of paint has been flung in the face of the public.

    - Camille Mauclair (1905) riffing on Ruskin; commenting on the 1905 Salon d'Automne by the artists Louis Vauxcelles dubbed as Les Fauves (The Beasts)

F = ma

    -  Theatre of the Actors of Regard (-2015-)

Ash Keating with Gravity System Response #2 - photograph by Amanda Fordyce 

A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...



27 June 2015

Cheer Squad

TAR Cheer Squad member expresses enthusiasm for projection-space.

Theatre of the Actors of Regard    
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...

 LOGOS/HA HA                 

25 June 2015

"Heads should roll" declares PM

As responsible journalists in this whose-side-are-you-on Australia under the Abbott Government, we have to be careful
in so many ways.

This from a Canberra Doorstop Interview today:

25 June 2015
Prime Minister
Address to Australian Strategic Policy Institute; defence white paper; national security; future submarines project; Q&A appearance of Zaky Mallah.

PM, can I just ask you, what do you make of the ABC's decision to repeat Q &A yesterday, and have you banned Government ministers from appearing on the show?
Utterly incomprehensible – utterly incomprehensible. Here we had the ABC admitting a gross error of judgment and then compounding that terrible mistake – that betrayal, if you like – of our country by giving a platform to this convicted criminal and terrorist sympathiser, they compounded the mistake by rebroadcasting the program. Now, frankly, heads should roll over this – heads should roll over this. I've had a good discussion with the Communications Minister, Malcolm Turnbull. I know he has made a very strong representation to the ABC. We've announced that we are not satisfied with an internal ABC inquiry because so often we've seen virtual whitewashes when that sort of thing happens. There is going to be an urgent government inquiry with recommendations, and frankly, the ABC ought to take some very strong action straight away.

On 7.30 (ABC.TV), the Minister for Communications, Malcolm Turnbull, is asked about this :
LEIGH SALES: Do you agree with the Prime Minister that heads need to roll over the Q&A broadcast?

MALCOLM TURNBULL: Well, look, I'll decide what metaphors I use and the manner in which I use them.

Was that witty and weird, or what? Or just a little bit of history repeating?

The word is about, there's something evolving,
Whatever may come, the world keeps revolving...
They say the next big thing is here,
That the revolution's near,
But to me it seems quite clear
That's it's all just a little bit of history repeating.

'History Repeating' (Propellerheads feat. Shirley Bassey)

We will decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come.
This morning's The Age Editorial (read the full text here) : 

Free speech Forgotten in the Q&A furore

Zaky Mallah made a hotheaded outburst on live television during Monday night's Q&A program on ABC-TV. He has since claimed his tone of voice was perhaps too harsh, which is sophistry, for his words alone were enough to cause offence. Yet Mr Mallah has the freedom to think and say foolish things. Australian ears are not so precious that he must be silenced. Better he be heard, and his muddle-headed logic exposed.  ...

In that light, Prime Minister Tony Abbott was wrong to demand of the ABC "Whose side are you on?" after the broadcast, and again on Wednesday after the program was repeated. This smacks of populist point-scoring rather than a genuine concern about the security of the nation. Is Mr Abbott's faith in the power of free speech so feeble that neither he nor the members of his government can puncture Mr Mallah's opinion, so instead seek to attack the messenger?  ...
This evening, 'Head of the ABC' (sic) Mark Scott delivered the 2015 Corporate Public Affairs Oration : a powerful defence of the role of the ABC. 

Read the full text here (extract below)
Watch the video presentation here

As someone said to me this week, free speech arguments would be easier if you were always defending Martin Luther King. At times, free speech principles mean giving platforms to those with whom we fundamentally disagree.

It was the crux of the Charlie Hebdo argument last year and of course, the source of the maxim that was used to describe Voltaire’s beliefs — “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
Here at the offices of bLOGOS/HA HA, our experienced and responsible rédacteur en chef  is not easily intimidated. Nonetheless, pinned to her door - irony? caution? - is this 1872 depiction by CHAM, clipped from our files of Le Charivari : 
a giant of a man, a journalist accused of insulting The Assembly, mockingly crowned with his own publication, sentenced to a year of public derision. LOGOS/HA HA : The Laughing Stock

Que pendant un an le journaliste ne porte d'autre 
coiffure que le numéro dans lequel il a insulté 

click image to enlarge   
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...

 LOGOS/HA HA                 

23 June 2015

TAR Trek : Leader of the Band

Adorned with sun and moon, 'Leader of the Band' travels the interverse clapping and clashing his black-painted cross+braced stretched-canvasses, his diamond/square and circle 'cymbols'. 

Here he is in earlier days, at the foot of the ladder, a diamond/cube in one hand a sphere in the other. His upturned pain/t crown spilling down onto the Agnus Dei (LOGOS/HA HA)Crazy kid!
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...



20 June 2015

TAR TREK - Paris 1909

Etudiants de la Faculté de Spectacle et Regard sur le défilé à Paris.

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...



17 June 2015



Crikey / Daily Review

16 June 2015

George Brandis unites the crossbench in votes against the government

Heath Aston / The Age

17 June 2015
The legal and constitutional affairs references committee will now review the handling of the letter sent by Martin Place siege gunman Man Haron Monis to the Attorney-General and, separately, Senator Brandis' decision to divert $105 million from the Australia Council to a new program that has been branded by Labor as his own "arts slush fund", the National Program for Excellence in the Arts. 
The vote to establish both inquiries, held on Tuesday, was the first time all eight crossbenchers have voted with Labor and the Greens to refer the government to an inquiry chaired by the opposition.
Below, protest street poster by Theatre of the Actors of Regard, after Un collège en promenade by CHAM, Le Charivari, 6 March 1869.

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


15 June 2015

Sealed on this day, another day

Another Fool King, another fine consequence : 
Following a revolt by the English nobility against his rule, King John puts his royal seal on the Magna Carta, or “Great Charter.” The document, essentially a peace treaty between John and his barons, guaranteed that the king would respect feudal rights and privileges, uphold the freedom of the church, and maintain the nation’s laws. Although more a reactionary than a progressive document in its day, the Magna Carta was seen as a cornerstone in the development of democratic England by later generations.
John was enthroned as king of England following the death of his brother, King Richard the Lion-Hearted, in 1199. King John’s reign was characterized by failure. He lost the duchy of Normandy to the French king and taxed the English nobility heavily to pay for his foreign misadventures. He quarreled with Pope Innocent III and sold church offices to build up the depleted royal coffers. Following the defeat of a campaign to regain Normandy in 1214, Stephen Langton, the archbishop of Canterbury, called on the disgruntled barons to demand a charter of liberties from the king.
In 1215, the barons rose up in rebellion against the king’s abuse of feudal law and custom. John, faced with a superior force, had no choice but to give in to their demands. Earlier kings of England had granted concessions to their feudal barons, but these charters were vaguely worded and issued voluntarily. The document drawn up for John in June 1215, however, forced the king to make specific guarantees of the rights and privileges of his barons and the freedom of the church. On June 15, 1215, John met the barons at Runnymede on the Thames and set his seal to the Articles of the Barons, which after minor revision was formally issued as the Magna Carta.
- June 15 : This Day In History 

The four surviving copies of the Magna Carta (British Library copies, top left and bottom right, Salisbury Cathedral copy, top right, Lincoln Cathedral copy, bottom left), reunited in London for the anniversary.

King John's 800-year-old seal at the base of The British Library's Canterbury Magna Carta
Another Fool King, another fine consequence : 

'Untitled Document'
sealed on this day
another day 

FIAPCE, 1973  
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...

 (Untitled Document)

14 June 2015


'The Expanding and Contracting Universe of Painting'
Roundtable discussion
Tuesday 9 June 2015, 6–8pm
Gertrude Contemporary

‘The Expanding and Contracting Universe of Painting’ is a roundtable discussion about the specificity of contemporary painting practices that are proximal to sculptural and installation practices. Each speaker will present a short statement, followed by an open discussion.

'The Expanding and Contracting Universe of Painting' is the first in a series of discussions about contemporary painting organised by Fayen d'Evie and Liang Luscombe, which will take place at Gertrude Contemporary.

Brooke Babington
Jan Bryant
Gabriel Curtin
Ry Haskings
David Homewood
Helen Johnson
Annika Koops
Lucina Lane
Nell Pearson
Lisa Radford
Bryan Spier
Nick Selenitsch
Masato Takasaka

Helen Hughes

We couldn't get there so listened instead to our very worn vinyl original of ] I'M ( STRANDED by THE PAINTS, released in Australia in 1977 by Reductivist Crisis records. A classic!
AAA_ Art Archive Australia  
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


13 June 2015

Philip Ruddock & The Love Revolution

Dr. Cornel West
as seen on Q & A
'Justice is what love looks like in public'

'Deep education requires a habitual vision of greatness.'
'You can't lead the people if you don't love the people. You can't save the people if you don't serve the people.'
Q & A, Monday 8 June, 2015  
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...



12 June 2015

Of many things, fools and kings

Last time, we visited the Court of the fool king Theoria Rex, attended on one side by WC Chain and on the other by Laughing Lord Spider.

We do have an affection for such characters. King Canute, for instance.

click the image to enlarge 
It was another dubbed royal, Nat 'King' Cole, who popularised the wisdom of 'Nature Boy'. 
There was a boy
A very strange enchanted boy
They say he wandered very far
Very far, over land and sea

A little shy and sad of eye
But very wise was he

And then one day, a magic day
He passed my way, and while we spoke
Of many things, fools and kings
This he said to me
'The greatest thing you'll ever learn
Is just to love and be loved in return'

click on the image above to hear it sung by the one who wrote it, eden abhez :
George Alexander Aberle, known as eden ahbez (15 April 1908 – 4 March 1995), was an American songwriter and recording artist of the 1940s to 1960s, whose lifestyle in California was influential on the hippie movement. He was known to friends simply as ahbe. 
Ahbez composed the song "Nature Boy," which became a No. 1 hit for eight weeks in 1948 for Nat "King" Cole and has since become a pop and jazz standard. 
Living a bucolic life from at least the 1940s, he traveled in sandals and wore shoulder-length hair and beard, and white robes. He camped out below the first L in the Hollywood sign...
Hey, that's our kinda guy!
...above Los Angeles and studied Oriental mysticism. He slept outdoors with his family and ate vegetables, fruits, and nuts. He claimed to live on three dollars per week. 
Ahbez was born in Brooklyn, New York, to a Jewish father and a Scottish-English mother, and spent his early years in the Brooklyn Hebrew Orphan Asylum of New York, which branched off from the Hebrew Orphan Asylum. He was then adopted, in 1917, by a family in Chanute, Kansas, and raised under the name George McGrew. 
During the 1930s, McGrew lived in Kansas City, where he performed as a pianist and dance band leader. He probably also lived in New York City for some time, although little is known of that period of his life. In 1941, he arrived in Los Angeles and began playing piano in the Eutropheon, a small health food store and raw food restaurant on Laurel Canyon Boulevard. The cafe was owned by John and Vera Richter, German immigrants who followed a Naturmensch and Lebensreform philosophy influenced by the Wandervogel movement in Germany. He was a vegetarian. He recalled once telling a policeman: I look crazy but I'm not. And the funny thing is that other people don't look crazy but they are. 
Their followers, known as "Nature Boys" and who included Robert "Gypsy Boots" Bootzin, wore long hair and beards and ate only raw fruits and vegetables. During this period, he adopted the name "eden ahbez," choosing to spell his name with lower-case letters, claiming that only the words God and Infinity were worthy of capitalization. He is also said to have desired the A and Z (alpha and omega), the beginning and the end, in his surname. 
- wikipdeia
John Barbour (1954-2011) had his cast of wise fool characters too : John Barbour, John de Silentio, Joao Solitaire, the dunce...
Which brings us to Painting 2015  by Peter Booth, from his current Melbourne exhibition :

photo : Karen Woodbury Gallery, Melbourne 
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...



10 June 2015


Theoria Rex
] who with unblinking gaze (         

Theoria : the act of looking, the act of regard 

Theatre of the Actors of Regard
Theoria Rex : The Loo King 

'I am the Loo King' : Anthem of the Loo King. Sung at the Court of TAR to the melody of Russell Morris's 'Real Thing' (1969).
Come and see the loo king, come and see the loo king, come and see
Come and see the loo king, come and see the loo king, come and see
There's a meaning there, but the meaning there doesn't really mean a thing
Come and see the loo king, come and see the loo king, come and see
I am the loo king ! 
Oo mama mow-mow
Oo mama mow-mow
Oo mama mow-mow
Oo mama mow-mow
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something... 

Oo mama mow-mow
Oo mama mow-mow
Oo mama mow-mow
Oo mama mow-mow

08 June 2015

Brandy Crusta : Invented in antebellum New Orleans, this citrus-kissed cocktail was a precursor to the sidecar. True

We're enjoying the Brandy Spoof Cocktail Hour at The George Brandis Live Art Experience.
A few faves...

The young George B and his pal Tony whitewash the border    
(after Norman Rockwell)    
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


06 June 2015

John Heartfield & The John Heartfields

re-present : 
 Photography, Persuasion, and the Rise 
 of Avant-Garde Photomontage 
by Andrés Mario Zervigón
Suck My Cuts : this special re-edition book cover celebrates 
the cut-and-paste Ministry of George Brandis QC, Director of Excellence and Efficiency Dividender to the Arts of Australia.

We Are All John Heartfield Now : Lots more GB cultural collage at  The George Brandis Live Art Experience

Australians for Artistic Freedom : open letter to George Brandis - sign here
George Brandis : The Australian Academy for Excellent Art : here
Defining the Modern Australian Landscape : here
 Fosterville Institute of Applied & Progressive Cultural Experience
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


04 June 2015

Window Shopping ( 'I didn't understand what people meant when they said this. Why would anyone...?' )

window (n.)
c. 1200, literally "wind eye," from Old Norse vindauga, from vindr "wind" (see wind (n.1)) + auga "eye" (see eye (n.)). Replaced Old English eagþyrl, literally "eye-hole," and eagduru, literally "eye-door."

Originally an unglazed hole in a roof, most Germanic languages adopted a version of Latin fenestra to describe the glass version (such as German Fenster, Swedish fönster), and English usedfenester as a parallel word till mid-16c. Window dressing is first recorded 1790; figurative sense is from 1898. Window seat is attested from 1778. Window of opportunity (1979) is from earlier figurative use in U.S. space program, such as launch window (1963). Window-shopping is recorded from 1904.

"Window shopping, according to the women, is the king of outdoor sports. Whenever a woman gets down town and has 2 or 3 hours and no money to spend, she goes window shopping. She gives the Poiret gowns and the thousand dollar furs the double O and then kids herself into believing she'd look like Lillian Russell or Beverly Bayne if she had 'em on. It's great for developing the imagination and one of the great secrets of conserving the bankroll. ..." ["Motor Age," Jan. 27, 1916]
In the early 1950s, a 'returned serviceman' chemist set up shop next to the Kangaroo Flat Post Office (see previous POST).

A few years later, as the post-WW2 austerity gave way to a new hopefulness, the chemist bought the premises next door and built a large modern Pharmacy and Gift Palace.

Sometimes, a young family could be seen there, looking at the things in the window display.

Sometimes, one can still see them, at large in the world, window shopping...

 collection: Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


02 June 2015

POST script

In researching the previous blog post
about post offices...

Hmmm : why "post"?

post (n.1) 
"a timber set upright," from Old English post "pillar, doorpost," and Old French post "post, upright beam," both from Latin postis "door, post, doorpost," perhaps from por- "forth" (see pro-) + stare "to stand," from PIE root *sta- "to stand, set down, make or be firm" (see stet). Similar compound in Sanskrit prstham "back, roof, peak," Avestan parshti "back," Greek pastas "porch in front of a house, colonnade," Middle High German virst "ridepole," Lithuanian pirstas, Old Church Slavonic pristu "finger" (PIE *por-st-i-).
post (n.2) 
"place when on duty," 1590s, from Middle French poste "place where one is stationed," also, "station for post horses" (16c.), from Italian posto "post, station," from Vulgar Latin *postum, from Latin positum, neuter past participle of ponere "to place, to put" (see position (n.)). Earliest sense in English was military; meaning "job, position" is attested 1690s.
post (n.3) 
"mail system," c. 1500, "riders and horses posted at intervals," from post (n.2) on notion of riders and horses "posted" at intervals along a route to speed mail in relays, probably formed on model of Middle French poste in this sense (late 15c.). Meaning "system for carrying mail" is from 1660s.

Aha! That supports Tim's theory. We were wondering about the public seating in this mid-1960s photo : set above the gutter and facing towards the road outside the Kangaroo Flat Post Office.

We recalled it was a Bus Stop. Tim suggested it might be sited there as a continuation from the days when the Melbourne-Bendigo Cobb & Co mail coach would stop at each post/office. 

Anyway, in researching our previous blog post about post offices, we found online at vimeo a very interesting 90 minute interview with the artist Robert MacPherson.

l - r : Michele Helmrich, Robert MacPherson, Rex Butler
An Evening with Robert MacPherson

The University of Queensland Art Museum
1 May 2013
In it, MacPherson talks at length and in great detail about his art. And, in a note towards the end, explains why one year he sent 3000 items through the Hepburn Springs Post Office and received in return a thank you letter from postmistress Debbie.

 33 envelopes from Bob (23 January 2007)
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...