Thursday, November 29, 2018

The 100 Churches Project


I started this in a small way, recording churches close to home, but it has grown into something much bigger, that involved lots of research and driving about, and encompasses temples, mosques, synagogues and other sacred places. Brisbane is full of such buildings that embody powerful spiritual meaning and are the focus of community sentiment.
These are places where people celebrate life, be it marriages, births, and deaths. People bear witness to loving unions; we mourn our departed loved ones. But these places are often just landmarks that we drive past, and they are not really in the public consciousness.
I wanted to record these places with integrity, just the fact of the place, and how it looked on a particular day, with weather, cars, people, traffic lights, no frills or “best face”. It became an obsession there for a while. I had to stop at 100 but I could have kept going. There are many I missed but I did my best.




The 100 Churches Project by Robyn Bauer





1. St John’s Anglican Cathedral, 373 Ann St, Brisbane Q.4000
2. St Nikolas, Serbian Orthodox, 6 Ross St, Woolloongabba Q. 4102
3. St Francis of Assisi, Dutton Park Catholic Parish, 47 Dornoch Terrace, West End, Q.4101
4. Ukrainian Byzantine Catholic Parish, 36 Broadway St Woolloongabba. Q.4102
5. Brisbane Mosque, Islamic Society of Holland Park, 309 Nursery Road, Holland Park, Q.4121
6. Rosalie Baptist Church, 97 Fernberg Road, Paddington, Q.4064
7. Windsor Road Baptist Church, 16 Windsor Road, Red Hill, Q.4059
8. Mary Immaculate, Annerley Ekibin Catholic Parish, Ipswich Rd and Ferndale St, Annerley Q4103
9. St Brigid’s Church, Catholic, 78 Musgrave Road, Red Hill, Q.4059
10. St Barnaba’s Anglican Church, 28 St Barnaba’s Place (Waterworks Road) Red Hill, Q. 4059
11. Annerley Baptist Church, 556 Ipswich Road, Annerley, Q.4103
12. St David’s Uniting Church, 68 Orange Grove Road, Cooper’s Plains, Q.4108
13. St Stephen’s Chapel, Catholic, 249 Elizabeth St, Brisbane Q.4000
14. All Saints Church, Anglican Parish of Brisbane, 32 Wickham Terrace, Spring Hill, Q.4000
15. St Columba’s Catholic Church, 170 Kedron Brook Road, Wilston, Q.4051
16. Sacred Heart Church, Catholic, 369 Given Terrace, Paddington, Q.4064
17. St Finbarr’s Church, Jubilee Catholic Parish, 202 waterworks Road, Ashgrove, Q.4060
18. St John’s Lutheran Church, 24 Levington Road, Eight Mile Plains, Q.4113
19. Our lady of Victories, Catholic Church, 29 Cintra Road, Bowen Hills, Q.4006
20. St Mary’s Catholic Parish, 1 Bromelton St, Beaudesert, Q.4285
21. St Andrew’s Uniting Church, 299 Ann St, Brisbane City, Q.4000
22.St Andrew’s Lutheran Church, 25 Wickham Terrace, Brisbane, Q.4000
23. Graceville Uniting Church, 215 Oxley Road, Graceville, Q.4075
24. Sri Selva Vinayakar Temple, Hindu Temple, 4915-4923 Mt Lindsay Hwy, South Maclean, Q.4280
25. Iglesia ni Cristo, Church of Christ, 65 Orange Grove Road, Cooper’s Plains, Q.4108
26. Logan Bosnian Islamic Centre,2674F Logan Road, Eight Mile Plains, Q.4113
27. Ithaca Presbyterian Church, 100 Enoggera Terrace, Paddington, Q.4064
28. Fo Guang Shan, Chung Tian Temple, 1034 Underwood Road, Priestdale, Q.4127
29. Redeemer Chapel, Our Saviour Lutheran Church, 745 Rochedale Road, Rochedale, Q.4123
30. St Luke’s Church, Anglican Parish of Ekibin, 193 Ekibin Road, Tarragindi, Q.4121
31. Brisbane Sikh Temple, 2679 Logan Road, Eight Mile Plains, Q.4113
32. St Stephen’s Cathedral, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane, 249 Elizabeth St,     
       Brisbane, Q.4000
33. The Brisbane Synagogue, Brisbane Hebrew Congregation, 98 Margaret St, Brisbane, Q.4000
34. Bulimba Uniting Church, 216 Oxford St, Bulimba, Q.4171
35. St John the Baptist, Anglican Church, 171 Oxford St, Bulimba, Q.4171
36. St Patrick’s Church, Roman Catholic, 58 Morgan St, Fortitude Valley, Q.4006
37. Macedonian Orthodox Church, Nativity of the Holy Mother of God, 142 James St, New Farm,  
       Q.4005
38. Holy Spirit Catholic Parish, 16 Villiers St, New Farm, Q.4005
39. St Michael and All Angels, Anglican, 655 Brunswick St, New Farm, Q.4005
40. City Tabernacle, Baptist Church, 163 Wickham Terrace, Spring Hill, Q.4000
41. West End Uniting Church, 11 Sussex St (cnr Vulture St) West End, Q.4101
42. Uniting Church in Australia, Kennedy Terrace, Paddington, Q.4064
43. St Paul’s Anglican Church, 10 Jubilee Terrace (cnr Waterworks Rd) Ashgrove, Q.4060
44. Ashgrove West Uniting Church, 491 Waterworks Road, Ashgrove, Q.4060
45. St Mary Magdalene, Catholic Church, 51 Cecil Road, Bardon, Q.4065
46. Pilgrim Congregational Church, Episcopal Church, 163 Simpsons Road, Bardon, Q.4065
47. St Francis Theological College Chapel, Chapel of the Holy Spirit, 233 Milton Rd, Milton, Q.4064
48. Church of St Thomas More, Jubilee Catholic Parish, Chapel St, Petrie Terrace, Q.4000
49. Christ Church Milton, Anglican Church of Australia, 9 Chippendall St, Milton, Q.4064
50. Ann St Presbyterian Church, 141 Ann St, Brisbane, Q.4000
51. St Michael’s Catholic Church, 250 Banks St, Ashgrove (Dorrington) Q.4060
52. Albert Street Uniting Church, 319 Albert St, Brisbane City, Q.4000
53. St John the Baptist, Catholic Church, 131 South Pine Road, Enoggera, Q.4051
54. Our Lady Queen of Apostles, Stafford Catholic Parish,70 Appleby Road, Stafford, Q.4053
55. St Clements on the Hill, Anglican Church, Eudunda St, Stafford, Q.4053
56. St Therese Little Flower Church, Catholic, 80 Turner Road, Kedron, Q.4031
57. St Paul’s Uniting Church, 7 Minimine St (cnr Webster Rd) Stafford, Q.4053
58. St Carthage’s Catholic Church, 115 Beaconsfield Terrace, Gordon Park, Q.4031
59. Holy Cross Catholic Parish, 28 Chalk St, Lutwyche, Q.4030
60. St Paul’s Presbyterian Sabbath Hall, 43 St Paul’s Terrace, Spring Hill, Q.4000
61. St Paul’s Presbyterian Church, 43 St Paul’s Terrace, Spring Hill, Q.4000
62. St Joseph’s Catholic Church, 26-36 Leopard St, Kangaroo Point, Q.4169
63. Kangaroo Point Uniting Church, 40/48 Linton St, kangaroo Point, Q.4169
64. St Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral, 344 Vulture St, Woolloongabba, Q.4102
65. Islamic Centre, West End Mosque, 12 Princhester St, West End, Q.4101
66. Greek Orthodox Church, 33 Edmonstone St, South Brisbane, Q.4101
67. St Mary’s Catholic Parish, 20 Merivale St, South Brisbane, Q.4101
68. St Mary’s Anglican Church, 455 main St, Kangaroo Point, Q.4169
69. Bahai Centre, 26 Mayneview St, Milton, Q.4064
70. Hindu Temple, Hindu Society of Qld Inc. Gayatri Mandir, 178 Lyndhurst Rd, Boondall, Q.4034
71. Masjid Taqwah Mosque, 119 Telegraph Road, Bald Hills, Q.4036
72. Gurdwara Singh Sabha, 101 Lemke Road, Taigum, Q.4018
73. Greek Orthodox Parish of St Paraskevi, 241 Church Road, Taigum, Q.4018
74. Church of Christ, Queenstown Ave and Carlyle Road, Boondall, Q.4034
75. Sandgate Seventh-Day Adventist Church, 6/8 Depot Road, Deagon, Q.4017
76. Ching Chung Taoist Temple, The Evergreen Taoist Church of Australia, 41 Depot Road, Deagon,
       Q.4017
77. St Flannan’s Catholic Church, 194 Handford Road, Zillmere, Q.4034
78. Christadelphian Ecclesias Wilston in Zillmere, 110 Church Road, Zillmere, Q.4034
79. Brisbane Congress Congregation, Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Congress, Uniting Church in
       Australia, 385 Zillmere Road, Zillmere, Q.4034
80. St John the Evangelist, Anglican Parish of Green Hills, 181 Wardell St, Enoggera, Q.4051
81. Seventh Day Adventist Church, 97 Blackwood St, Mitchelton, Q.4053
82. St Matthew’s Anglican Parish of Grovely, 35 Church Road, Mitchelton, Q.4053
83. St William’s Catholic Church, 67 Dawson Parade, Grovely, Q.4054
84. The Gap Uniting Church, 1050 Waterworks Road, The Gap, Q.4061
85. Ashgrove Baptist Church, 7 Firhill St, Ashgrove, Q.4060
86. Rivercity Family Church, 59 Settlement Road, The Gap, 4061
87. St Mark’s Anglican Church, 1073 Waterworks Road/Kullaroo St, The Gap, Q.4061
88. St Thomas Anglican Church, 67 High St, Toowong, Q.4066
89. Toowong Baptist Church, 5 Jephson St, Toowong, Q.4066
90. Christ Church Anglican Parish of St Lucia, 3 Baty St, St Lucia, Q.4067
91. Chinese Christian Church of Brisbane, 83 Ryans Road, St Lucia, Q.4067
92. Holy Triad Temple, Buddhist temple, 32 Higgs St, Albion, Q.4010
93. St Andrew’s Anglican Church, 160 Vulture St, (cnr Cordelia St) South Brisbane, Q 4101
94. Free Serbian Orthodox Church, St Nicholas Monastery, 243/247 Vulture St, South Brisbane,
       Q.4101
95. St Clement’s Catholic Church, 74 Ernest St, South Brisbane, Q.4101
96. Gospel Hall, 50 Miskin St Toowong, Q.4066
97. Brisbane Australia Temple, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 200 River Terrace,
       Kangaroo Point, Q.4169
98. St Ignatius Loyola Church, 30 Kensington Terrace, Toowong, Q.4066
99. Toowong Uniting Church, 82 Sherwood Road, Toowong, Q.4066
100. St Peter Chanel Catholic Centre, 41 Chaprowe St, The Gap, Q.4061




All Paintings 21x21cm,
Oil and Acrylic on Canvas Board

$290 each











Installing the 100 Churches Project, Robyn Bauer
Installation shot, The 100 Churches Project, Robyn Bauer with the help of her son

Installing the 100 Churches project, Robyn Bauer with the help of her son









Individual images can also be viewed on my website.

www.robynbauer.com




Saturday, September 22, 2018

More Black and White Sketches of Brisbane

I am really loving getting out and about in the mild winter weather. These drawings have all been done on location or en plein air in and around Brisbane.
They are all ink on paper, specifically Arches 300gsm smooth, hot pressed watercolour paper.


Jo Jo's Restaurant South Brisbane

Ithaca War Memorial
Fortitude Valley
Bardon Water Tower from Collingwood Street.
Breakfast Creek Hotel
St Matthews Mitchelton
Story Bridge Hotel
Japanese Garden Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens
Woolloongabba
Milton Fig Tree

Brisbane City from Southbank






















Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Recent Urban Sketches of Brisbane


For the past year I have been venturing out at least weekly to capture the sights and activities of many varied locations in Brisbane.


Latrobe Terrace Paddington Brisbane, Urban Sketch


I wanted my drawings to have both strength and a strong design aspect so I decided to work just in ink. The ink is diluted into various strengths from ink black to pure water.
Brisbane has such strong contrasts with our harsh sunlight and very dark shadows so I thought ink was the perfect medium to achieve this. It can be extremely messy so I usually wear black on my sketching days! I want to indicate the bright colours of our urban landscape without using colour.


Rosalie Village Brisbane Urban Sketch

 Being a Paddington resident, and being so enamoured of the place I have no trouble finding appealing locations quite close to home. Finding a spot in the shade is the most overriding consideration and when I am comfortable on my fold-up stool I can always find a composition in any direction. Framing devices such as foreground trees or telephone lines are something I embrace. The clutter of the street really is the subject after all. I always do a quick thumbnail first through my trusty viewfinder. If I don't do this I always regret it!




Given Terrace and Great George Streets, Le Bon Choix, Urban Sketch Brisbane

Overhead telephone lines usually echo the topography of the street below so they provide a great compositional device. People and trees are my very favourite subjects as they provide the life and energy of the scene and give me chance to loosen up. If I am patient, a person that I can include will appear and if they move on I can morph them into the next person in the drawing.



Story Bridge Brisbane Urban Sketch

The landmarks of the city such as the big bridges are subjects that appeal if I can find appropriate shelter from the sun. Sometimes I work from the car. Even if I do focus on an iconic subject, I try to get an unusual view of it that is not stereotypical but is nevertheless accurate from a particular vantage point. Including the signage and the overhead lights and wires gives the sense of authenticity and accuracy that is important to me.




The Eternal Flame, Anzac park, Urban Sketch Brisbane


Some members of our group of Urban Sketchers Brisbane have architectural training and they gravitate towards producing detailed sketches of buildings. There is such a wealth of styles embodied in the buildings of Brisbane. Often in a single sketch different historical periods and genres are apparent. The silhouette provided by the shapes provides an important compositional device. Trees often do this job for me.

Ann Street Uniting Church from Ann Street, Brisbane Urban Sketch

Tonal values are paramount in this series of works. I do the big "squint" to establish where my lights and darks are and I usually go straight in with a fine pen that is slightly water soluble. I try to "disappear the line" by taking the tonal wash right up to it, as there are really no lines in the subject, just changes of colour or tone. This really creates a three dimensional illusion instead of just a drawing with lines. If I can "get rid of the line" then I do so. The change from dark to light indicates the subject in a much more realistic fashion. Also the drawings can take on the quality of an old black and white photo, which I find appealing and it creates another level of visual reference with historical overtones.


The Mansions, George Street Brisbane, Urban Sketch

The arched windows in the sketch above illustrate this point. There are no lines just changes of tone or value. As far as perspective goes, I think it is the last thing to be worried about. I use "sighting" or holding up my pencil vertically or horizontally to measure the angle of a building by sight. I never bother with measuring. I just compare to the constant vertical and horizontal of the edge of the paper.
The foreground framing of a concrete planter box and traffic lights gives sense of the crowded location. You can no longer step back from city buildings and get a picturesque view. It just isn't physically possible.


Rising Sun Hotel Rosewood, Urban Sketch


Even in surrounding small towns, the paraphernalia of the street intrudes on the subject. In the case of this hotel in Rosewood, I think the railway crossing provides an amusing angle. It is accurate from where I was sitting against the opposite fence.


Kilcoy Urban Sketch


I have traveled a little further afield and found some great subject matter. I am sure my powers of observation and subsequently my knowledge of these small towns is really enhanced by investing some time sitting in the street and sketching.


Rathdowney, Urban Sketch


Sandgate Town Hall


Oriel Park Ascot, Brisbane Urban Sketch


There is definitely a quality of recording aspects of Brisbane life of the present moment. Change happens relentlessly and some of these images are a snapshot in time. I am actually aware of this while I am working. Different things are visible in different seasons also.



Racecourse Road Ascot, Brisbane Urban Sketch

The giant fig trees that are dotted around the city and suburbs are something that makes my heart sing. I just can't go past one, even if I had another subject in mind before arriving.




The Watercolourist, at The Priory, Kenmore, Brisbane Urban Sketch

Everyone likes to come across an unexpected sketch of themselves, particularly if it is like "candid camera" and they had no knowledge of being captured at the time. I make it a mission to try and capture everyone in the group at some stage over the months.




Melbourne and Grey Streets Brisbane, Urban Sketch

I quickly captured another of our regular sketchers in the foreground here. It's always a good idea to put them in early on and just work around them. There is lot of camaraderie in our group and we have a lot of laughs when people see images of themselves. They would rather be sketched than photographed, that's for sure!



Tropical Dome and Succulents, Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens, Brisbane Urban Sketch

As I mentioned earlier, trees and people are my favourite subjects and the Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens is my favourite place. There is wealth of material there for the artist and plenty of shade. These textures are a challenge to indicate just using the one simple medium. I often start with a bamboo twig to get a loose starting point. I then go in boldly with large 2 or 3 cm brushes to apply the tonal washes. Splashes of ink are great to indicate growth and movement. I love the use of the accidental mark. I actually provoke it. Spilled ink adds, doesn't detract.




Latrobe Terrace Paddington, Brisbane Urban Sketch


Queensland Museum, Brisbane Urban Sketch

The Three Monkeys, West End, Brisbane Urban Sketch


Collingwood Street Paddington,Brisbane Urban Sketch


Fig Tree and Sandgate Town Hall, Brisbane Urban Sketch


As you can see these trees really are a feature of my work. When the ink is dry (which happens pretty quickly in this climate) I can go over the ink with a white charcoal pencil to bring out some highlights and create volume.




Antarctic Beech Trees Springbrook


Antarctic Beech Trees, Springbrook, close up of roots.


Depending on the amount of time available, some sketches are more detailed than others. I sometimes think that the quicker and simpler the better.

It is only after spending the morning uploading all these images that I realise how many I have actually done! I am planning to put together a small book of these black and white ink sketches. I intend to have these at my next exhibition which is November 2018 at Royal Qld Art Society.

Hope to see you there!

If you are interested in joining Brisbane Urban Sketchers, you can find us on Facebook.





Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Paddington Portrait Project 1

Throughout history, the subjects in painted portraits have traditionally been the wealthy, the famous, and the powerful. It has always been elitist and remains so with the subjects painted for the Archibald Prize generally celebrities these days. People who are larger than life in more ways than one. I find each year I am enjoying the Archibald less and less.
To quote Robert Henri

"Salon pictures are a special and very overgrown and mongrel breed". 

 Or closer to home John McDonald speaks of  a good Archibald year as one in which he is not "gasping in disbelief'. (2012)

The portraits that move me the most are more intimate and dare I say more authentic. What Christopher Allen describes as  "a mutual connection between artist and sitter that makes a good portrait the crystallisation of a relationship" . 

Even when you consider the greatest of the Old Master portraitists, some of their most moving works are the more personal ones eg. Velasquez's portrait of his manservant, Hogarth's portraits of his servants.



Hogarth



I believe the Archibald has become more about who is painted than how well they are painted.

I have started a project of my own which is decidedly anti-Archibald. I want to paint ordinary people, men, women and children in a much more egalitarian way. I knew I would have to build up to this, get plenty of practice, not having done portraiture consistently for a couple of years.

I was also influenced by the conceptual work of Marina Abramovic with her piece "The Artist is Present", in which she sat in an art gallery and people sat and faced her for hours on end.



Marina Abramovic


I find this work and this idea intensely moving, so I decided early on that eye contact and a front on viewpoint was essential to achieve what I was after.

I like art that looks back. I imagine a whole wall of ordinary people looking back.



Robyn Bauer Studio


So this is it. I have launched the project. This is my studio wall with my progress so far.

I have set myself guidelines which may change or develop as time goes on. I am not sure where the project will lead. For now my guidelines are

* Everything is done from life in two or three sittings of about two hours each. Not exactly alla prima as I like the paint to fully dry so I can make adjustments boldly.
* Eye contact, front on
* Canvas size 40 x 40 cm prepared with a swish of raw umber. Heads generally about life sized. maybe a little larger.
* I will paint anyone who wants to be part of the project
* Ideally I would like a balance of different ages, personalities, ethnicities, gender but I don't have full control over this
* No photography

I have had to warn all my sitters that the very entertaining show "Anh's Brush with Fame" is exactly that "Entertainment" and that I would not be psychoanalyzing them, nor were they expected to keep on chatting. We saved the chat for the breaks. I also explained that while it appears that I am really staring at them I am actually making continual decisions about colour mixing, shapes, tone etc. It is they that have the opportunity to really look at me without interruption. I am too busy working to worry about what they may be thinking about me, although I've been told that I pull a lot of faces and I stand with my left hand on my hip!



Robyn Bauer with Viewfinder

And I use a viewfinder to make early decisions.


Here are some of the portraits in more or less chronological order.












 After I had exhausted the family members I had access to, I put a sign in the studio window asking for volunteers. I have had lots of generous strangers willing to give up fours hours or so.








After I had done a few I had the courage to post a few of them on Social Media and I got a few more volunteers. Initially I wanted some link to Paddington, however tenuous but then I figured coming to my Paddington studio was link enough.









Husbands have modelled and then wives. I have made some good new friends. I know John Singer Sargent said that every time he painted a portrait he lost a friend. I guess his patrons were trying to call the shots considering the prices he was charging.













I am also very interested in how the experience of sitting feels for my models. Martin Gayford when sitting for Lucian Freud's "Man with a Blue Scarf" said his motive for sitting was "an assertion of my own existence". He said "The experience of posing seems somewhere between transcendental meditation and a visit to the barbers". 
"There is a rather pleasant feeling of concentrating and being alert but no need to do anything at all. 








The conversations had during the breaks have been lovely. One on one conversation always works best for me. I have learned about all sorts of things, including the geography of the surrounding landscape seen from my back deck. And several of my drawing boards have been expertly cut down for me by a master carpenter, seen above.





Keeping the backgrounds simple but accurate as far as my studio lighting goes, has also been an important factor. I have a black sheet up as a backdrop and it is magic for the contrast of beautiful white hair.














Basically my models are coming from pretty much everywhere. Friends, family, acquaintances, strangers, friends of friends, different aspects of my life, including fellow choir members.








Some of them could do with another sitting but the sketchy finish suits others.





I want to have a balance of male and female but at this stage I am just painting whoever comes along.




Getting plenty of practice painting beards. They are all so amazingly different and I have added lead white to my palette for the first time.




And finally, if no-one comes along I have to resort to the family canines.

More to come.