Art events aplenty!

There are some interesting art events coming up, that I thought I’d share with you. If you know of other events, exhibitions you recommend or are interested in, please share!

‘WILDCARDS’ – exhibition of Australian photographs selected (but not photographed) by Bill Henson
Monash Gallery of Art
Opening Sat 8 Feb (that’s tomorrow!)

White Night Melbourne
A street art party of music, art, dance and food, taking over blocks of Melbourne streets till the sun comes up!
Fri 22 Feb 7pm to Sat 23 Feb 7am

See my photos from White Night Melbourne 2013

The Knowles Gallery – Official Launch Exhibition
The talented artist Tony Stephens is involved in the launch of this cool art space in Prahran. Come join the party!!
Fri 28 Feb 7pm-


Lots on this week in Melbourne

Sorry for not updating the blog for a while. I’ve been busy doing this and that… As you would know if you are following my Facebook Page, there have been regular shoots going on, at the markets, on the street and sunset and sunrise as always. But just haven’t had time to properly publish them here, on my blog.

Now, before bringing you up to speed with what’s been happening in my photography world, I’d like to share with you what will be happening, in Melbourne, this week. I will be checking out some of them where I can, and others I recommend that you do. So here it goes…

1. Chinese New Year at NGV – Water Painting Art Performance by Bee

When: Wednesday 13 February 2013: 10am – 2pm
Where: National Gallery of Victoria International (St Kilda Road)

Chinese New Year Performance at NGV by Bee

In place for HungWei the ‘Splash Baron’ who is unfortunately unavailable for the event, her friend Bee, who collaborated with HungWei on water painting work at various occasions, will be performing the water painting on the fore court of NGV International on St Kilda Road. This is the final of 3-day performance, so don’t miss it!

For more info:
Splash Baron:
Flying Bee’s Love Art Travel:
Photos in my Facebook page:


2. Blenders Ln Artists Market

When: Wednesday nights 5pm – 10pm (only 3 more weeks to go!)
Where: 110 Franklin Street, Melbourne

Blender Ln Artists Market

Taking place on beautiful summer evenings, just around the corner from the night market at Queen Victoria Market is this laneway filled with artistic inspirations. Artists bring their craft and some produce their magic before your eyes. Live music moves you, all-naturale ginger ale cools you down and you may come home with bag full of one-and-only hand-made goodies!

Everyone kindly gives me permission to photograph their works, so I do have quite a few photos on my Facebook page. I might wrap them up and publish in this blog again, too. I’ll be back on your final night of the season in 2 weeks’ time. Looking forward to photographing your best works and your party dress. We’ll say good bye to summer in style, before going back to our workshop to start the creative process again!

Blenders Ln Artists Market:
Photos in my Facebook page:


3. Sidney Myer Free Concerts with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra

When: Wednesday/Saturday 4pm open for 7pm start – wed 13, sat 16, wed 20, sat 22 February
Where: Sidney Myer Music Bowl

Sidney Myer Free Concerts

Melbourne as Arts Capital of the region at its best – Melbourne Symphony Orchestra puts on free public concerts, not just one, but FOUR CONCERTS, in the park. You can bring in your picnic blanket, wine, cheese, tomato and olive and chill out lying on the green stuff up the hill, or sit in the best front-row seat in the house and enjoy the acoustic of the natural sound of orchestra. Doors open early, so make your way and secure your spot.

Be careful – no breakable glassware allowed, so you cannot bring those nice wine glasses.
Plastic ones, please.

Ah… it sort of happens on the same evening at Blenders Ln…

For more info, check out the MSO website:


4. PEACE Exhibition: Opening Talk at Monash Gallery of Art

When: Saturday 16 February 2013: 2pm
Where: Monash Gallery of Art (860 Ferntree Gully Road, Wheelers Hill)

‘Degree South’ the Australian photographer co-op, or group of documentary photographers, will be presenting their works from assignments around the world, focusing on ‘what peace looks like’. Michael Coyne and Ben Bohane will take the podium to talk about their works. I’ve seen their works in some exhibitions and in their first book ‘WAR’ that I have in my bookshelf.

People who face the disasters have a sense of appreciation for peace, order, safety and health. Many documentary photographers in the past captured the world of love and peace, including the well known war photographer Robert Capa, whose best photography, in my personal preference, is among those when he pointed at children, ladies and family away from the bullets and bombs.

If you would like to tag along for this, please let me know. MGA is not the easiest gallery to reach if you are based near the city like me. I’ll be driving up for the talk, and come back in time for the concert at Sidney Myer Bowl in the evening.

For more details, check out MGA’s website:

Street Photography

When I arrived in my old room at my parents’, this was waiting for me on the desk. My mother had recently been to an exhibition of his works and absolutely loved the works.

Some of you probably know his name. He was one of the photographers at Magnum agency, and was known for his style in street photography that was full of wit, fun and story.

While little book which was the collection of works that were displayed at the exhibition, and the exhibition was over by the time I reached Osaka, yesterday when I walked past the gallery shop in NGV where I took a refuge from the heat outside, I sat down and flipped open this book:

Elliott Erwitt: Personal Best

It is a thick, big print book, but the images in there are just amazing, and I couldn’t help laughing out at some of the images. It is just so funny! Have you watched the recent comedy film “Crazy, Stupid, Love”? Kinda like that!

Anyhow… I am still a long way from the greats of this capacity, so I am learning by watching, hearing, and practicing. There will be an exhibition of documentary / street photography happening at Monash Gallery of Art soon. Next Saturday 4 February there will be an opening talk given by Mr. Michael Coyne, a great journalist photographer, and on the following week a floor talk (curator talks about works, etc.) I’m already planning a lunch with my friend so we can head down to Wheelers Hill around 2pm, with enough time to look at the works before the talk starts at 3pm. Not sure about the week after yet, but hopefully similar set up…
So if you also like documentary and street, do head down to MGA on Saturday afternoon!



I was watching a documentary on a famous documentary photographer James Nachtwey. While I am amazed once again how he connects with the people in hardship and let them slip him inside. He is literally up right in front of their nose when he shoots  on his traditional documentary photographer’s wide angle lens, but the most shocking part in watching how he works is that, although the video does not show the whole thing, he obviously goes through a process of talking to people, meeting people, or, as he describes, sometimes without words, let them accept him, allowing him to photograph because they know he is there for them. Such an art of connection is relevant to any form of photographing people, and I must say I do use a lot when I’m traveling. I don’t want to go on asking everyone for a permission before photographing, but I don’t want to be rude either. So the art is finding that connection, show that I respect them, and make them see that I am seeing something beautiful in them. A bit like convincing a girl to go out for a dinner with you, though I find that one much harder!

Anyhow, ‘sequencing’ appeared in this documentary. My project on the ‘reflection’ series is coming towards the stage where I need to wrap it up. I’m currently getting my test images printed, and next comes the filtering and ordering, or ‘sequencing’. Nachtwey was holding a stack of 4″x6″ prints and putting them on the steel panel with magnet, putting them in order and seeing which ones fit together nicely. I couldn’t say that I am particularly good at this. But with documentary based photography, to which street photography belong, there is not forward planning as to what images you will end up with. So as much as you try to make the strongest images that communicate the theme of your project, they are individual images and not intentionally made so that it would sit nicely within a set.

I saw a very good example today. I drove across town to Monash Gallery of Art where  they are exhibiting some of the images from a Germany-Australia collaboration photography project called ‘Hijacked 2’ and this evening German Anne Lass and Australian Bronek Kozka, who both contribute their images to the project, talked about their images. It was one of those opportunities where I got to hear the thinking process of other image creators and it was enjoyable to see how different those two photographers were. Walking around the room and looking at a few dozen prints on display, I couldn’t help feeling it lacked the integrity. It looked more like a collection of stuff forced into one place but not talking to each other. Then, after all that great talk and questions and answers, I got to see the book that collected all the images from the project, in the sequence they are originally intended. It was actually a very strong series of images by very different photographers. But you could tell the art of sequencing involved by the hands of curator or project director. It was just amazing. I did see some of the images in it, as those were on the wall in front of me. But they just didn’t have half the strength of the images that were in small book but presented in the correct context.

So, that is my task. When my 4″x6″ prints come up on Friday, I’ll be up against the table scratching my head over what is the best way to present them. And inevitably, it would lead to some colour adjustment, etc. which then will be printed again, and possibly final re-print. Mounted, boxed and they will be done.  I don’t yet have a wall covered with the steel panel and magnet. But I’m actually quite tempted by the idea of it… Not sure whether my landlord would be as excited to have an easy-care photo display wall across my living room, though.

Enough talking. Time for some of my street images from this week. I’m getting pretty sick of looking at the reflections all the time (like I was tired of looking up at the sky between buildings in city 6 months ago for the project at the time), so I’m getting back into a bit more ‘straight’ street shooting as well.

last stop
last stop
lights in the dark laneway
lights in the dark laneway
blur in slowness
blur in slowness

Li Gang: In the Grey Scale – Photography exhibition at MGA

Monash Gallery of Art will be exhibiting images by Australian-trained Chinese photographer, Li Gang. The gallery’s website introduces his works as:

The use of hand-built cameras introduces risk and accidents to Li Gang’s work. In his photographs, instead of control and mastery, there is magic and mystery. The photographic darkroom was always a place of magic and mystery, where alchemy and science turned silver halides into pictures. Li Gang returns to these roots.

Li Gang (image from Monash Gallery of Art website)
Now, doesn’t that sound interesting! The opening event will be held this Sunday 26 September at 3pm. The artist and curator will both be present, so it would be a perfect opportunity to get to know the insight of the unique style exploited. There will be refreshments served. If you like to come along with me, please let me know by the day before.

This exhibition will be open to public from the 23rd of September (today) till the 26th of November.

You might also like to know that this year’s Bowness Prize winner will also be announced this evening (23 September), so I’m guessing that the short listed works will be on display if we go there on Sunday. I look forward to seeing you there!

Monash Gallery of Art: Opening Hours (how to get there)

Tuesday to Friday 10.00am – 5.00pm
Saturday & Sunday 12noon – 5.00pm
CLOSED Mondays & Public Holidays