by Kerry Tolson @kerrytolson.com
"I've never liked housework. I get by doing little chores when I feel like them, in between paintings. Who wants to chase dust all their life? You can spend your whole lifetime cleaning the house. I like watching the patina grow. If the house looks dirty, buy another bunch of flowers, is my advice."
Margaret Olley. "Far From a Still Life" by Meg Stewart.
Margaret Olley was born on the North Coast of NSW in Lismore and upon her death in 2011, she bequeathed to our beautiful area, the recreation of her Duxford Street studio and home.
Room by room, paint-pot by paintbrush, right down to the ciggy butts and odour the home of 48 Duxford Street and its adjoining 'Hat Factory' studio, were painstakingly recreated in its entirety at the Tweed Regional Gallery, enabling art lovers and visitors alike to peer into the great painter's home and catch a glimpse of where she created and what inspired her beautiful still-lifes.
Peeking through the windows into the rooms may not be for those who have a touch of OCD for the great Margaret Olley did not clean a speck of dust, straighten a cushion or get rid of anything. Palette upon palette of crinkled squeezed-to-death paint tubes and ashtrays overflowing of half smoked cigarettes from the original home sit amongst pots of flowers, dishes of fruit, pods and seeds and the artefacts Margaret Olley collected from around the world. All up over 75,000 pieces create this 'home'.
The home itself was a living work of art, an organic palette of creativity that changed each day as the great painter moved around her various workstations; canvases that were propped up in spots around the house with the 'subjects' - bowls of fruit, vases of flowers, curios in varying stages of formation. Any available space on the walls is decorated in posters from art exhibitions she had attended, also found their way into her paintings.
I have been to the exhibition (which is a permanent installation at the gallery) countless times since it opened back in March 2014, and every time I come, I find something I haven't seen before. A carpet, a carving, a religious icon or curio piece will spring out from some tuck away corner and I find myself wondering in what hidden exotic spot in the world did she find that.
It's always a great outing to the MOAC and the Tweed Regional Gallery and as well as the eclectic rooms of Margaret Olley, the gallery also has an impressive collection of Olley paintings on display with exhibition pieces being changed twice a year - what better excuse to put off the day's chores than to 'pop over to Margarets', just don't forget to pick up a bunch of flowers on the trip home.
For further details about the Margaret Olley Art Centre and Tweed Regional Gallery. click here
A little dash of gladsome
This is my page of delight - things that tickle my fancy, favourite books to take me on inner journeys, art that lifts me up, and tib-bits to make me giggle. It'll be random, fanciful, joyful and delightfully inspiring.
Hello! I'm Kerry
. . . a plan-nothing, have no idea where I'm going travelholic.
A daughter of the gypsies and the wife of a workaholic, I'm forever wondering 'What's over there?' and devising ways to squeeze through the barbed-wire fence of small-business ownership responsibilities and every-day life tangles to discover it.
and this is my book