STOP THE PRESS!!!!
The Australian newspaper today had a special feature on Hong Kong in the WISH magazine. With Art Basel just around the corner, I can't help but take this opportunity to invite you to join Jenny Garber and I on what will be a luxury art trip like no other.
I was delighted to read about the Australian, Michael Lynch, CEO of the mammoth West Kowloon Cultural District project and learn about just how HK$24 billion will be spent across a large museum and 16 other major cultural venues. The mind boggles. Also featured is the architect of the stunning Upper House Hotel, Andre Fu. The Upper House is the venue for the farewell dinner for our trip.
Of course one can't talk about Hong Kong without talking about David Tang and the influence he has had on the dining and luxury retail scene there. On our trip, we will have the pleasure of dining at 2 of his fine establishments - dim sum at the stunning art deco decked out Island Tang and our welcome dinner at the private members China Club...
Art Month kicked off this week and, along with a plethora of exhibitions to view across Sydney over the coming month, there are also timely and insightful talks and panel discussions to get your teeth into...
Wednesday night at the MCA … and it was a treat to hear the ever erudite Simon Mordant and active contemporary collector, James Roland discuss their take on philanthropy. Given that, had it not been for Simon and his wife, Catriona, we would not even HAVE an MCA today - it was a highly passionate and driven conversation about the lack of philanthropic support for not only the visual arts, but the arts in general. Government funding is clearly not the solution to the problem, as Simon has said frequently, more of those who have the means to be more involved SHOULD be more involved. The American model for the board compositions of public art institutions of 'GIVE, GET OR GET OFF' should be adopted here!! The current controversy of Transfield's sponsorship of the Sydney Biennale was also touched on and the general feel was that it is a very slippery slope to throw gifts and philanthropy into the same pool as corporate sponsorship. Nine artists have now withdrawn from participating in the Biennale.
Thursday night saw a bustling crowd celebrate the opening of Tim Maguire's new exhibition at Martin Browne Contemporary. The canvas works were supremely complimented with a darkened room of his lightbox works - truly hypnotic and a more defined and bold style is shining through. Lots of dots too!
Today Jenny and I enjoyed a wonderful catch up with CEO and Group Fairs Director for Art Fairs Australia, Barry Keldoulis - the man in charge of Sydney Contemporary and The Melbourne Art Fair. Currently working and travelling 7 days a week, Melbourne in August is shaping up to be magnificent with great local, NZ and South East Asian gallery support already in place. Mark your diary for 13 - 17 August and book your accommodation NOW! Last weekends ART13 in London was a great success, with strong sales and happy faces from the galleries and buyers! Congratulations on yet another triumph!
This coming weekend sees the 2nd instalment of SCULPTURE AT SAWMILLERS, a week long outdoor sculpture exhibition on Sydney's harbour foreshore at McMahons Point. Given that this is in my own backyard, I am thrilled that Elsa Atkin, fellow resident and dog walker, has once again gathered an extraordinary collection of artists and installed a breath taking outdoor show for locals and Sydneysiders. Running until the end of next weekend I urge you to hop on the ferry, grab a coffee at Bili's Cafe on Blues Point Road and head to this hidden pocket of bushland and lawn, right on the water. That's where I'll be at 8am tomorrow with my dog!
There is SO much to see and do in Sydney this month, I guess I'll sleep in April...