‘Art Roads’ series heads to Benalla

SINUOUS: Brett Whiteley’s ‘Marulan bird with rocks’ circa 1980. IMAGE: Art Gallery of NSW / Wendy Whiteley copyright

Beechworth Arts Council is encouraging members and friends to take to the tarmac and join the first of its ‘Art Roads’ series on March 18.

These self-drive, shared vehicle journeys are being planned across the year and will be led by Arts Council vice president and fine arts creative honours student Daren John Pope.

The first Art Roads drive will take in Benalla Art Gallery’s Brett Whitely exhibition ‘West of the divide’.

Participants will depart Beechworth post office at 9:30am for Wangaratta Art Gallery and Christine Johnson’s ‘Voyages Botanical’ exhibition and a spot of morning tea.

The ‘Art Roads’ caravan will then drive on to Benalla where the Whiteley exhibition features works from the late Sydney artist’s enduring connection with country west of the Great Dividing Range. Daren is hoping to organise a discussion about the Whiteleys with Benalla Art Gallery director Bryony Nainby for Art Roads’ travellers. He will also provide commentary on the works.

Benalla Art Gallery has a lovely cafe for those who want to lunch. Alternatively, the adjacent Benalla Botanical Gardens offer wonderful options for picnicking.

Car-pooling is encouraged. If you’d like to join Art Roads #1 or can offer seats in your car please email Daren by March 12.

Dark art on stage

DARK: Nick Ravenswood and Gareth Skinner in ‘The Baby Farmer’

Beechworth’s former asylum at Mayday Hills is to become the setting for the dark art of theatre on March 17-18.

Direct from the Adelaide Fringe Festival, Nick Ravenswood and Gareth Skinner from Melbourne’s The Laudanum Project present in a variety of media the story of a helpless child and her unbalanced mother against an ever-shifting musical tapestry that reveals desinty, lost innocence and the nature of evil.

The Laudanum Project has shocked audiences since 2009, combining the darkest concepts with the best of writing, performance and music.

Artwork from artist Chloe Neath will be exhibited with the performance – intricately detailed works in charcoal on brown paper – together with a book.

Mayday Hills Village Ι March 17-18, 2017 Ι 8:00pm for 9:00pm start Ι Ticket: $40 book it

The Laudanum Project

Digging into book publishing

Anne Vale’s Writers, Readers and Poets’ Weekend workshop will take place at Beechworth’s Mayday Hills, where Beechworth Treescape Group will lead a walk and readings ‘into the woods’ among Mayday’s National Trust-listed tree collection.

Anne Vale’s academic and practical interests in Australian design, influential women and gardening coalesced when she wrote a guidebook about ‘Durrol’, a significant garden near Mount Macedon.

The Allen family in 1932 commissioned Edna Walling – gardener, landscape designer, photographer and writer – to plan a small enclosed garden within the larger grounds laid out in the earlier years of the twentieth century. Walling became the subject of an entry Anne wrote, while a University of Melbourne lecturer in garden history and design, for The encyclopedia of women and leadership in twentieth century Australia, and demonstrates that Walling’s influence persists today, more than 40 years after her death.

Anne, in Walling’s footsteps, has written three books and the most recent of these, Influential Australian garden people and their stories, was self-published. The former Victorian branch chair of the Australian Garden History Society – and, like Walling, a skilled garden photographer – says it has been the most successful of her publishing experience.

Participants in Anne’s Beechworth Writers, Readers and Poets’ Weekend workshop on Sunday, February 12 will learn about writing and preparing a book for publication, negotiating a printing contract, and taking – profitably – a book to market.
Participation: $50 | book it | presenter information

Writing the new world

AmalgaNations‘ author and travel writer Doug Hendrie. Image: University of Melbourne

Travel writing has a well-known skew towards exotica. That’s understandable – if everywhere is the same, why leave home?

But globalisation has brought cross-pollination – and Melbourne nonfiction writer, teacher and author Doug Hendrie reveals you can now go everywhere and see traces of home.

In his Beechworth Writers, Readers and Poets’ Weekend workshop on February 11, Doug explores the possibility and promise of writing travel in a globalised world.

His AmalgaNations: how globalisation is good found a series of unexpected – and bizarre – cultural mash-ups, from StarCraft videogame superstars of South Korea to the Clash-loving punks of Indonesia; from gay power in the Catholic Philippines to the street filmmakers of Ghana.

‘A whirlwind world tour through surprising subcultures told with subtle humour,’ said publisher Hardie Grant, ‘AmalgaNations picks up where Louis Theroux leaves off.’

 Doug has a longstanding interest in cross-cultural issues and emergent subcultures. He is working on his second book.

Saturday, February 11
Doug Hendrie workshop | George Kerferd Hotel, Beechworth | 10:00 – 11:30am
Participation: $50 book it | presenter information

Beechworth-raised poet’s new work published

A new collection of poetry by Beechworth-raised poet Eddie Paterson is to be published today by Whitmore Press

Beechworth-raised poet and Writers, Readers and Poets’ Weekend presenter Eddie Paterson will have a new title to his creative name when he returns to Beechworth for WRAP17 (February 10-12).

Independent Whitmore Press this evening (Feb 1) in Melbourne releases redactor – a new collection of poems by the University of Melbourne creative writing lecturer. Poet and novelist Amy Brown will launch the work for publisher Anthony Lynch, who says Eddie has used found texts from the everyday – emails, memos, notes, lyrics, text messages, tweets and webfeeds – as poetic material for redactor.

“Drawing on techniques from the visual arts and radical writing such as the ready-made, the cut-up and the concrete poem, Eddie Paterson reflects upon the ways in which the historical legacy of censorship intersects with contemporary surveillance technologies,” Anthony says.

Eddie will discuss redactor at Beechworth Books as part of the WRAP program on Saturday, Feb 11, at 9:30am. He will also sign copies. He will later host ‘Poets by post’, public, walk-up readings of poetry on the steps of Beechworth post office.

That evening, at George Kerferd Hotel, Eddie will host a post-dinner conversation with The Dressmaker author Rosalie Ham.

The New York Times’ Sunday Book Review wrote of Ham’s work: ‘…We sense that…once the camera closes in on the ‘tumbling brown house’ of Mad­ Molly, ‘leaning provocatively on the grassy curve’, it’s clear we’re visiting a small 1950s town not of history but as imagined by Tim Burton: the gothic, polarized world of Edward Scissorhands’.

Rosalie Ham was born and raised in Jerilderie in southern NSW and as a young adult ‘rushed to university because Gough Whitlam made it possible’. The Dressmaker has become a film starring Kate Winslett, Judy Davis, Liam Hemsworth and Hugo Weaving. Rosalie has since written Summer at Mount Hope and There should be more dancing.

WRAP dinner | Saturday, Feb 11 | Participation: $80, with wine available for purchase | book it | presenters’ information: Rosalie Ham and Eddie Paterson