17 April 2012

Look! The Art of Australian Picture Books Today, and Mirror @ CMAG, a review

| kepayne
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I just went to check out what is new at the Canberra Museum And Gallery, and I have to say, I’m impressed.

The two exhibitions introduced on 24 March; Look! The Art of Australian Picture Books Today, and Mirror by Jeannie Baker are both fantastic.

As I’m not someone who ever goes out of their way to look at visual art (nor understands it when I do stumble across it), it was pleasing to find something that was aimed at everyone, not just art enthusiasts.

While there were plenty of children running around at the Look! exhibition I think that I was much more excited than they were. Getting to see great art work from my favourite childhood books was a welcome trip down memory lane that I hadn’t been expecting, including art from Elizabeth Honey and Bruce Whatley.

Seeing illustrations from Australian Picture Books presented as an exhibition was also a good reminder of just how talented local artists are, and how visual art can be appreciated by both young and old alike given the right setting.

Jeannie Baker, another acclaimed children’s illustrator, had a really wonderful exhibition too. While the collages were interesting to look at in themselves, the story they presented was even more so. Each picture linked together to show separate but interwoven tales about two boys from different backgrounds, one in central Sydney and one in rural Morocco.
Look! ends on 10 June and Mirror ends on 20 May if you want to have a look and remind yourself of the magic that picture book illustrations did (and still do) hold.

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I really enjoyed this exhibition. Particularly the picture of Old Tom, who is a kind of slobby one-eyed anarchist cat who bullies his owner a bit. The paintings are hung at children’s level, too, so if you’re tall, prepare to bend down.

Thanks very much for sharing – I’ll take my daughter over!

GardeningGirl9:19 pm 17 Apr 12

I suppose I should make an effort to check what’s on at CMAG, I just don’t find it an inspiring venue. But I have been to a couple of interesting exhibitions and the mention of Jeannie Baker caught my attention, so thanks for the review, I’ll take a walk over there next time I’m in town..

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