Art better than a thousand words?

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CANBERRA ARTISTS Julie Bradley and Ann McMahon, together with US artist Teri Wagner have been exhibiting “Paths through the forest” at M16 Artspace for a week or so.

'For Lake, Forest, Sky-Wild wind', Julie Bradley, 2012, mixed media.
‘For Lake, Forest, Sky-Wild wind’, Julie Bradley, 2012, mixed media.
It’s a  kind of intellectual walk through a forest created from the minds of 3 artists who have taken their themes from myths, legends, tales and history to respond in mixed media works.

Bradley looks to the idea of transformation, so prevalent in folk stories and myths in her collages and mixed media works on paper.

Woven structures by McMahon, made using gathered sticks, are a visual metaphor for the process of learning and our use of a framework to assess new situations and understand the environment that we inhabit.

Wagner uses narrative motifs from tales, myth, legend, history, the cult of the saints in the Catholic Church as well as the system of alchemy which later evolved into modern science in her multi media images.

This weekend they’re holding a literary event called “A thousand words,” (a joke on the adage that “a picture tells a thousand words”) in which three Canberra writers respond to the storytelling nature of the artworks, afternoon tea and music by Jacqueline Bradley and Matt Nightingale.

Citynews art reviewer Anni Doyle Wawrzynczak, writer Nigel Featherstone, and Allan Sko from BMA magazine, will spin their tales as they ponder the connections between the artworks on exhibit and the nature of storytelling.

McMahon and Bradley will be present to discuss their artworks informally after the event.

“Paths through the forest” at M16 Artspace, 21 Blaxland Cres Griffith, until October 20. “A thousand words,” literary event and afternoon tea, 2 to 4pm, Sunday October 13.


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Helen Musa
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