The old grain silo at Tinning St. in Brunswick has stood abandoned for decades; when did grain cars last travel along the railway tracks? The raw concrete stands bare except for some graffiti at the base of the two towers – graffiti decorates the ugly ruins of the modern world. The silo is a relic from another era of industrial Brunswick, a sore thumb landmark beside the Upfield train line. I don’t know what should be done with it – what do you think?
What should be done with the silo is the subject for the current exhibition at Tinning Street Presents… 20 artists presenting their ideas for a new image for the silo. All of the artists worked on the same photograph of the silos. There were the street artists like Snot Rag and Nick Ilton but I didn’t recognize most of the artist’s names. 20% of the exhibition is good, 20% is crap and the other 60% is ordinary work from the artists. There are the artists who gave up on the project or didn’t have any good ideas like Louise Klerks or Stuart Beckmeyer’s collages. There was some good work by Liam Barton and an over-the-top fantasy Lovecraft-inspired creation by Otis Chamberlain. Lincoln Walker’s design to turn the grey silos into an elephant was appealing. There were also two pads of images of the silos with sharpies to draw your submission, to be made into a book by Aaron Maxwell.
But the opening night was not just about the art; after all 20 average images riffing on an image of a grain silo are not a big attraction. There were musical performance and a bar with gold coin donation for drinks. Above the bar there was a big stretched canvas with the beer sponsor’s logo on it – but they aren’t sponsoring me so I won’t mention their name.
When I arrived Oliver Hunter as 0+0 was vocalizing into a Boss digital echo unit and looping unit. Over 500 people said that they would be attending the event on the Facebook event page. Not that the Tinning Street gallery could fit that many people – they were spilling out into the graffiti decorated laneway. I didn’t hang around for the projections on the silo by Projector bike but I did photograph the bike.
2 Comments | tags: Brunswick, Snotrag, Tinning Street, Upfield Line | posted in Art Galleries & Exhibitions
Tea and cakes with Snotrag makes for a pleasant afternoon.
The small gallery upstairs at Brunswick Bound bookshop is crowded on Saturday afternoon for the opening of Snotrag’s exhibition “Ear”. Amongst the crowd are the artists HaHa, Junky Projects, Arlene TextaQueen and Pierre Lloga. DJ Tuffy mixing tracks with some radical but relaxed sounds including a Phillip Glass track.
Snotrag is a punk street artist based in Melbourne making art for the street and gallery. She is not only active in decorating the streets of Melbourne and Jogjakarta but organizing and networking (hence the turn out for her exhibition opening). She is involved in the Inter-Location Project building a DIY arts bridge between Melbourne and Jogjakarta.
At the exhibition a large wall painting fills the front wall of the gallery, decorative elements in a frieze runs across the top with two figures in Snotrag’s distinctive style below. There is a wall of black bandanas and t-shirts with images of faces and birds. Her images of birds in drawings and t-shirts would be ordinary were it not for her totemic decorative details. These decorative details that were developed through doodling and looking at architectural details, remind me of elements of calligraphic ornamental borders.
On the other wall are framed mixed media drawings, most impressively her Skull and Dust series. I wish that there were more narrative elements or cheeky intelligence in her drawings, as in her crossed hammer and vibrator drawing – DIY. It is Snotrag’s 2nd exhibition and it looks like she is still developing/expanding her style. The works are all reasonably priced and work was selling quickly at the opening. There is even a painting free for the best cop story and a box to post the stories in.
Talk at the opening was punctuated by “Yeah yeah” from all New Zealand artists; it is like listening to the antipodeans equivalent of Dada (“yeah yeah” in Romanian).
It looks like her work on the street
Snotrag piece in Brunswick
Leave a comment | tags: Brunswick, Brunswick Bound, illustration, Snotrag, wall painting | posted in Art Galleries & Exhibitions, Street Art