Thursday, February 23, 2012

Salon Y Melbourne

I recently had the pleasure of visiting Melbourne
 and during the stay spent a lovely afternoon
 at Salon Y.

A relaxing restorative visit was had.
 Cut, colour and a few glasses of champagne with my hair stylist, good friend, and pop culture confidante Timothy Millar formerly of the Gold Coast's Gilston 4 salon,
 who has recently joined the team.

Salon Y has a wonderful ambiance.  
It's owner Ray Barry has created an opulent hideaway in the three floored terrace.  The busy hustle and bustle of nearby
 Chapel Street, Windsor just metres away.

The lovely Paul Allen cutter/stylist and also co-owner
 of Record Paradise, together with
 colour director Margaret Box
insured our time at Salon Y was well worth it!

Here are a few snaps of the interior and secluded courtyard.

Makeup counter by Becca

words and images by J Watson-Evans

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Diane von Furstenberg in Architectural Digest

Architecural Digest has requested that only five images from this story and only those available on their website be posted. 
 For another look at the wonderful images from the original post please visit or rush right into your nearest newstand and purchase the March issue of Architectural Digest!

One of my favourite spots I visited in NYC 
was the area known as the Meatpacking District 
which is flanked by an inspirational,
 elevated park development known as the High Line.

 This particular stretch of land used to run freight for the post office and the butchers in the area, was built in 1934.

 The site which holds spectacular views
 of the skyline and the Hudson
 stood as a disused rail yard for decades
 until a group of forward thinking citizens
including Von Furstenberg and her husband
Barry Diller played an integral part in redeveloping the area 
 into the urban oasis of natural understated planting, 
public art and cool industrial vibe it is today.

Smack bang in the middle of it all  
 is Diane von Furstenberg's flagship building
 and the penthouse apartment is featured
 in the pages of this months Architectural Digest . 

Adore the lines of the ochre sofa with the midcentury tables and Portrait by Zhang Huan

My favourite part of NYC
Wonderful rooftop garden

Wonderful vintage table and chairs with portrait by Warhol 

Ruhlman table and Franz West chairs serve as an office work zone.
  Artwork by Francesco Clemente and Joan Miro.

Wonderful teak bathtub and folding screen with coordinating stools

words by J Watson-Evans

images via AD

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Jason Middlebrook - the Nature of Geometry

I like the way
the natural lines of a tree synergise with hand made geometry
 in this work by American artist Jason Middlebrook

in the gallery NYC

acrylic on various tree 'planks'

images courtesy Jason Middlebrook

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Happy Birthday Scott Redford!

There is not an artist in the world who knows more about Australia's
 Gold Coast than my friend of many years Scott Redford.  

Born in Broadbeach in 1962, Redford has since 1983, continued a prolific art practice which whilst coming from an art historical standpoint
 has encapsulated everything from local and international
 pop culture imagery, minimalism, queer art, conceptualism,
 documentation of local mid-century architecture, 
surf culture, and a vigorous fascination with
 memory, desire, nostalgia and place.

Catalogue cover Scott Redford Selected Works 1983-1992

The place being Australia's coastal tourism capital the Gold Coast
 Our version of Miami Florida, Santa Monica or Venice California,
 Palm Springs, Las Vegas or indeed Florida's own Gold Coast,
 or a mash up of all of the above. 
The Gold Coast being in Redford's words, 
'the most post modern and fastest growing city in Australia', 
has continued to be the backdrop to which
Redford has based almost 30 years of art practice.

Paradise Waters early 1970's

Mid-century beach bungalow, Broadbeach

Typically perceived as the cultural backwater with its co-existence of kitschy glitzy night life, tourist playground, beach culture, and property development, Redford has hailed the city

 'A work of art in itself!'

Surf Painting/Modernist House 2000 
decal, polyester resin, fibreglass and acrylic lacquer on foam

Surf Painting /House corner of Surf Parade and First Avenue, Broadbeach, Gold Coast 2001 (detail)
decal, resin fibreglass and acrylic on foam

Surf Painting/Black Palms 2000
 decal, resin fibreglass & synthetic polymer on foam

 He optimistically embraces his hometown and in typical Warholian fashion continues to be interested in the idea that pop culture is just as important as what is deemed to be 'high art' and that the lines are now permanently blurred!

Redford forever interested in the concept of 'otherness' 
has continued to ask the question:
  'Does locality fail?'

Why is anything which comes from outside the cultural epicentres of the world whether that be New York or Melbourne, regarded as less important?

And in fact similar comparisons can be made regarding the status of 
New York versus Los Angeles artists. Indeed California is currently celebrating its own history of
mass culture in many exhibitions such as the current
'California Art and Design - Living in a Modern Way' at LACMA .

Glazed Ceramic Skull for use in the proposed film Reinhardt Dammn 2008

During the 1980's, 1990's and 2000's  Redford has produced an impressive array of art comprising painting, sculpture, installation, video, photography, and the ever popular surfboard paintings. 

Here We Are Now/Entertain Us 1999 custom made surfboard cross

He is one of the few Australian artists who has embraced the process of collaboration with countless craftsmen and technicians, to produce his art.  Something, 'internationally' so commonplace a'la Warhol and Koons.

Sculpture to Lean Against and Discuss Pictures  2004

Now the work which is emerging in the younger generation of artists
 both nationally and internationally, 
is so reminiscent of much of Redford's back catalogue

Floor piece detail 1962 2003

Detail from floor piece from exhibition 1962 2003

After Robert Rauschenberg enamel over paper on canvas 1991

 And in fact his construction of a fictional young artist Reinhardt Dammn, the cute surfie who makes art, serves to illustrate the point in Redford's more recent work showcased at the
 'Scott Redford introducing Reinhardt Dammn' in 2011.

Reinhardt Dammn Introducing Scott Redford QAG 2011

QAG gallery view Scott Redford introducing Reinhardt Dammn 2011

Polar bear in the Water Mall QAG 2011

Proposal for a Gold Coast public Sculpture to commemorate Nirvana
coming to the Gold Coast/Surf & Kurt 2008

The High/Perpetual Christmas No Abstractions 2008 outside GOMA Brisbane

A Proposal for a Gold Coast Sculpture/ A Place In the Sun 2005

Now, with the cultural entrenchment of what used to be called
 'the information super highway' and all that goes with the world of
 social network and instant gratification, where everyone can be famous for way more than 15 minutes, I think that
locality does not and should not fail.

Automatic For The People/Surf 1997 epoxy coated custom wood

Scott Redford gets a birthday wish from me. 
 To my friend of almost 40 years and to someone who always inspires me.....

 Happy birthday!

The Gold Coast now belongs to the global village

Surfers Paradise has just 'entered the building!'

'Our goal must be nothing less than the establishment
 of Surfers Paradise on earth!'

Scott Redford is currently working in Berlin.

Words J Watson-Evans

Images via

 '1962 Scott Redford Selected Works 1983-1992; Scott Redford and the Gold Coast 'The Content of these paintings is secret, known only to the people of Surfers Paradise Gold Coast City Art Gallery; Scott Redford Introducing Reinhardt Dammn QAG/GOMA 2011; J Watson-Evans; Brisbane


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