2011 in Brisbane started, as much of the world knows, with floods. Of course, it was more drastic for places in other parts of Queensland than in Brisbane, and the repercussions are not over yet. Pace Project was put to one side while more immediate and important things needed to be done.
So starting a little later in January than planned, as the flood waters receded in Brisbane, as roads were reopened and the city was still very much mud-coloured in many areas, I began visiting the artists I had contacted about the exhibition called Drawling. I already had a fair idea which works I wanted from them, having trawled through galleries, my memory and online images, but new works made over the intervening months between last August when I first started looking and this January were also in the mix.
Visited Judith Kentish at her studio. Jude is an artist who has undertaken a number of artist residencies in very interesting places, very successfully. A fairly recent residency for her was the Australia Council studio in Tokyo which she had for three months. The work in the exhibition Drawling though, is work Jude completed during an even more recent residency in an unusual and isolated location. But I'll leave the story of that for later, when the exhibition is open. Jude's work can be described as 'slow' in the sense that it can take a long time to make, often consisting of fairly repetitive marks or actions and layers of marks which result in great attention to the qualities of a surface. While she makes work in her studio at home all the time, every now and then the opportunity to undertake that wonderful thing called an 'artist residency' - simply time to concentrate on making time-consuming work without the usual major distractions of paid employment, the usual chaos of living etc - keeps her kind of art practice vital.
Here's Jude's workstation in the studio in Tokyo:
A residency is a perfect time-out for many artists. Do people in other professions have an equivalent where a time & space is arranged in order to get away from it all to get some work done?