The hero image for our Mailbag comes from 1896 when Life Magazine decided to modernise Santa which I find delightful. If you would like to see a visual record of the evolution of Saint Nick please follow the bookmark link below to a wonderful article published by The Guardian in 2014.1
And you might be surprised to learn that children have been writing to Santa for nearly 150 years. Back in 1925 in the Tampa Day Times: St. Petersburg, Florida – 1925: the following letter to Santa from Horace Percy Greenapple was published.
Quite close to the top of the AnArt4Life blog mailbag is a reaction from Trevor in Canberra to the posts written on Sheep, Shearers and Sheds.
Trevor has reminded me that if we are going to refer to the famous painting Shearing the Rams by Tom Roberts it is mandatory to also refer to the almost equally famous image Ramming the Shears created in 1984 by Michael Leunig.
One of the most irreverent and clever reinterpretations of Shearing the rams is Ramming the shears, 1984 by Michael Leunig. Leunig is an astute observer of Australian society. His witty reinterpretation of Roberts’s paintings is both humourous and thought provoking in the questions it raises about Australian national identity. Ramming the shears first appeared in Leunig’s regular spot in ‘The Age’, but it gained wider circulation in 1985 when it was used on the cover of a book of Leunig’s cartoons.4
The artist Tom Roberts who painted Shearing the Rams was a member of the Heidelberg School, an Australian art movement of the late 19th century. Another member of the school was Frederick McCubbin and for over a hundred years one of his paintings titled Found has been lost. No one knew where this painting had disappeared to. And now Caroline has alerted us to the news that Found has been found!
Below you can watch the video and learn where and how the painting was found and how lockdown played a part in the discovery!
And now moving onto Port Elliot in South Australia where subscriber and artist John Wylie had a catch up with his mate Paul Whitehead also a local artist.
As John recounts:
We had great conversations about Paul’s painting career in London & Australia. They just got back from a holiday in the Flinders Ranges SA... camping in a creek bed one night they nearly got flooded out with a torrent of water coming down after rain up north!!
Paul has just completed a painting titled – “Morning Mist” set in Hahndorf (Adelaide Hills) with dairy cows grazing in a foggy field - the “hairs” on the back of one cow "shine” in the morning sun light...I purchased a small “print” (below).
If you would like to see more of the works by Paul Whitehead please click here.
And finally D in Bendigo has also recommended that if you are a Victorian you might like to take in the latest exhibition at the Bendigo Art Gallery by First Nations designers and artists.
Below you can read about the exhibition and also watch a wonderful 12 minute curator lead tour of Piinpi: Contemporary Indigenous Fashion.