Saturday, April 28, 2018

Silo Art Trail : Bendigo Marimekko: Design Icon 1951 to 2018

It seemed a fitting end to our art tour to take in the Bendigo Gallery's Marimekko exhibition.
We both remembered and even owned some Marimekko designs in the 70's.

The Marimekko logo, after rejecting many designs was inspired by the Olivetti typewriter text, and  was born in 1954
I liked the combined prints  
I remember the tent like shift!
Lots of geometric design 

Katsuji Wakasaka textile designer, arrived from japan in 1968 and was every influential in the further trend of design 
 Marimekko is the Finnish textile and fashion company that achieved international fame in the 1960s and 70s with its bold screen prints and pop-art style graphics. The name means Mary's dress.
 Its iconic fabric patterns and unconventional ready-to-wear outfits brought colour and informality to an otherwise self-conscious fashion world. With more than 60 outfits, swathes of original fabrics, homewares, sketches and other archival materials, the exhibition focuses on the work of the talented individuals who defined this local textile practice and created its internationally recognisable designs.
I had  a laugh when i saw an article from Vogue Magazine titled By any name --still a sack!
The style of the clothes was influenced by the intention to not cutting up the fabric design 

Accessories as well as clothes
Vuokko eskalin Nurmisniemi joined Marimekko in 1953 to design clothing and print patterns. What Vuokko did for Finnish women can be equivalent to what Coco did for France; one should be able to move freely in one's clothes. Alongside her radical loose-fitting dress designs, Vuokko created one the most enduring Marimekko classics: the unisex Jokapoika  (every boy) shirt in the striped Piccolo pattern.

Armi Ratia was  founder of Marimekko and designer Maija Isola but 1979, Armi Ratia passed away - leaving the ship sailing without a captain. In 1985 the company was sold to Amer Group, a Finnish conglomerate.
But with nw designers and being a changing company they continue to operate as a unique design company 

Friday, April 27, 2018

Silo Art Trail WOOMELANG

We drove to Woomelang on the way past Sea Lake and other murals of Kaff-eine

Woomelang is a rural township on the Sunraysia Highway and the railway to Mildura and not far south from Sea Lake 
Woomelang was first known as Cronomby Tanks, which were farm water storages on the Lake Wilhemina pastoral station. 
By 1893 the railway line had reached Birchip about 30 km south of Woomelang, encouraging the opening up of farm selections within reasonable travelling distance. Methodist church services were held at Cronomby Tanks in 1896. 
The railway extension came in 1899, and the name Cronomby Tanks was changed to Woomelang to avoid confusion with another similar sounding railway station. 
It is thought that Woomelang is derived from an Aboriginal word meaning poor or miserable.
Despite this Jo read out some cock and bull story about the name coming from a man on his horse Melang, who on seeing the township cries Whoa Melang!!
It was a nice little town with shops and a newly developed town square that wa for markets etc 
The mural on the general store is what took us there but we explored a bit further 

The Mural by Andrew Bourke 
the developing native garden in the Square
On way to Cronomby tanks this old shearing shed was built in the depression 
We drove out to the Cronomby Tanks
The shed is made form beaten kerosine tins.

all around the tanks were pictures made from corrugate iron of he old town 

One of the water catchment ponds 
Further Corrugated iron works!
One section of the highway had this Hay bale art  Another piece 's head had fallen off 
The day was dusty and windy and lots of loose brush was being bowled up against the faces Looking very picturesque

Sunday, April 15, 2018


The day was forecast with rain and  wind and in the dry Wimmera that translated to dust!
The road ahead
Waiting out a gust at the Patchewollock Silo
Clearing after almost 10 minutes!!
This was the longest stretch almost an hour's travel!!
Established in 1914, Patchewollock originated from two aboriginal words "putje" meaning plenty and "wallah" meaning porcupine grass. 
The first thing we saw was the 2 big Malle Fowl  around a large mound nest. The big Mallee Fowls are constructed from corrugated iron and painted to give the impression of feathers.
The sculptures which were installed by artist Phil Rigg in 2013 who has lots of stuff in Lascelles as well .

The Malleefowl belong to the Megapode family that use external heat sources to hatch their eggs. Malleefowl use decomposing vegetation during spring and solar heated sand in midsummer to hatch eggs inside large mounds. A pair of adults might hatch up to 200 chicks during their lifetime, but the species is struggling to survive. Malleefowl have faced significant and catastrophic loss of habitat to clearing and severe fragmentation of what remains. The chicks and adults endure drought and predation from birds of prey and introduced pests such as foxes and cats. Fire can quickly destroy vast areas of suitable habitat, requiring maybe 15 years for the birds to return to burnt habitat, and 30-40 years for the habitat to be suitable for breeding. 
After the dust settled we walked over to the Silo.

The painting by Fintan Macgee of local sheep farmer and shearer Nick  Hulland 

Magee says Mr Hulland was judged slim enough to fit the two narrow silos, and had "that classic farmer look", embodying the locals' spirit. The mural also depicts a tree dying and new growth to represent the bush life cycle. 

The painting by Fintan Macgee of local sheep farmer and shearer Nick  Hulland 
The local store where we retreated between the dust for a cup of tea
Magee says Mr Hulland was judged slim enough to fit the two narrow silos, and had "that classic farmer look", embodying the locals' spirit. The mural also depicts a tree dying and new growth to represent the bush life cycle. 
Mr Hulland, whose grandfather settled in 'Patche' under the post World War I soldier settlement scheme, said if the Patchewollock mural "promotes our little town in any way, that's good. Our little town is slowly dying so we've got to do what we can to keep it going," he says. 
The school closed in 2006 and the population has shrunk.
Its two shops closed, although one re-opened (essentials and petrol ) and is community-run. 
The wheat silos are of course decommissioned.
Mr Hulland said the last two or three farming seasons had been tough due to drought, although they had been "terrible" for farms 100km to the south.

After  a refuel I was given the key to the pump then when i went in she asked me how much its was!)
As we had a cup of tea we met a woman who knew Nick, was actually renting on his lot!
We headed to Woomelang just as the rain started 
My filthy car was soon clean!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Silo Art Trail HOPETOUN

We headed north to Hopetoun where we had booked to stay 2 nights ins read of moving each day.
 From there we planned to visit the Lascelles Silo and the one at Patchewollock.
Again it and been hard to find accommodation as the motels in Patchewollock had closed and also another in Hopetoun ( kept sending me to Hopetoun in WA.)
But I had booked into the Hopetoun Community Hotel that had 'renovated rooms' so we were hopeful.
The town was of moderate size and we had no trouble finding the hotel that looked rather basic. The hotel Lounge was quite with a group pf mums having what looks like a mothers group meeting. But our room was ready and we went round the back of the hotel into a nice comfortable room.
It was later we registered there was no hairdryer and no shampoo etc just soap, and while there was stable and chairs outside looking to the dirt car park there were no chairs in the room But we were comfy on the beds.
the bar where we booked in 
The great Breakfast pack

They provided for $10 a good breakfast pack so we were set.
the dining room when we went for dinner !

Lascelles (never heard of this spot) was established as a station on the Mildura railway line and was named after Edward Lascelles , owner of the Minapre grazing property in the area and a partner of wool-brokers Dennys-Lascelles. Lascelles Post Office opened in 1903 when the railway arrived. and with its neighbouring township Woomelang , even had a joint football team   competing in themallee Football league until the league folded in 2015.
We often had discussions about mice plagues! Rupanyup was overun in 2015,  but in 1917, after an abnormally warm winter, the mouse population of Lascelles was so large that mice filled every square inch of ground. More than 1,500 tons of mice - it is estimated that there were over a hundred million - were slain before the outbreak was finally tamed.
We headed off to see the Lascelles Silo first and then planned to see  Lake Tryell that night as it was forecast rain and wind the next day. 
The artist of Lascelles was Rone (Tyrone ) who depicted local farming couple Geoff and Merrilyn Horman, part of a family that has lived and farmed in the area for four generations.

the portraits were on opposite sides on the silos so not able to see both at once.
Rone says that he wanted the mural to portray his subjects as wise and knowing, nurturing the town’s future with their vast farming experience and longstanding connection to the area. 
Rone is well known for his portraits of women in monochromatic tones. (some in Benalla on my Facebook posts)

Silo Art Trail BRIM

Brim was the start of it all.
‘Farmer Quartet’ is located on roadside on the Henty Highway and stretching out across all four of the Brim silos, this massive mural was painted in 2015 as a tribute to the drought-stricken farming community. 
Created in van Helten’s famous monochromatic photo-realistic style, the mural instantly became a regional landmark and provided the inspiration for The Silo Art Trail project.
The project came to Brim out of the blue.
Van Helten (L) with Brim Community Active Group Shane Wardle 
Van Helten has done similar giant portraits in Ukraine, Norway, Italy, Denmark and Iceland, and he asked street artist management company Juddy​ Roller to find him silos in Victoria.
Brim Active Community Group put money towards the $10,000 project, along with Yarriambiack Shire and Regional Arts Victoria.Taubmans​ and Loop Paints donated
And has that paid off!!  van Helten has turned the tiny town of Brim, with a population of about 100, into a tourist destination overnight, and social media is cluttered with photos of his work.
The paint was donated from local company and the Brim caravan park and pub provided free accommodation and meals for van Helten.
The silos in the sunlight

The track behind
The fine detail is amazing 

There are three men and one woman here

There is no information re their identity (deliberate) but a lot of speculation about the mood or character of each figure.
When it was finished the publican Mr Holland and the locals thought it best the artist experience a "cut out" — a drinking session usually held in the shearing shed when shearers finish their last run. Van Helten's unwashed orange work shirt that he wore every day is now hanging proudly in the Brim Hotel.
Juddy Roller's magnificent photo!!
Juddy Roller  says
"the work captures the generational differences of those resilient enough to continue working the land, by representing a broad spectrum of the Brim Community portrayed in the archetypal form of different generations of the community, including an acknowledgement of the importance of female contribution to farming the land" 

Christmas Lights

While Brooklyn Victoria is not on the scale of Brooklyn New York a local street is becoming  the for Christmas lights So we planned a walk ...