Krissy and Me

On Thursday, Krissy picked me up from the hotel to go out for the day. She knew of my interest in traditional Aboriginal art and had found some places where we could go to see some. My fascination with their paintings began when I visited Australia in 2002. I went to the Art Gallery of South Australia and the South Australian Museum where I saw some amazing examples which had explanations of how the paintings depicted the stories from the Dreamtime.

NSW Art Gallery

Krissy’s and my first stop was at the New South Wales Art Gallery at The Domain in Sydney. There was a tour of their Aboriginal art collection starting at 11.00am. 

Our guide’s name was Helen. She began by explaining that, at the gallery, they tend not to reveal much information about the Dreamtime (or Dreaming) as it is sacred to the Aboriginals. Initially, it made me wonder how good the tour would be but I need not have worried as the tour was excellent. Helen was an enthusiastic, interesting and knowledgeable guide who kept our attention throughout. She explained that virtually all of the Aboriginal art is from the last 50 years or so. One could almost say it was painted to order. That does not marry with my memories of what I saw in Adelaide but it may be that my memory is unreliable or that attitudes have changed significantly.

We saw some stunning modern pieces with lots of bright colours. Generally I am not very keen on modern art but I certainly liked most, if not all, of what we saw.

This photo above shows a close up of some hollowed out poles that are made when a person dies. They are hollowed out so that the bones of the dead person can be placed inside the pole.

After the tour. Krissy and I had lunch at the art gallery then returned to the car. Krissy drove to Mrs Macquarie’s Chair which is a terrific viewpoint across Sydney Harbour. The picture below shows the view of the Bridge and the Opera House from there.

From Mrs Macquarie’s Chair we decided to go to the CooEe Gallery at Bondi Beach. That was something of a disappointment. They had an exhibition by a single artist many of who’s works were quite repetitive. One large painting was priced at AUD 19,000 but it was very similar to several other, smaller, paintings in the exhibition.

On leaving CooEe we walked towards the beach and bought ice creams which we sat and ate whilst looking at the surf and talking.

All in all, a very enjoyable day with very pleasant company. Thank you, Krissy.


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