A short video showcasing one of the artists from the touring exhibition "Tough(er) Love" which is travelling to over fourteen different South Australian regional galleries from now (Oct 2013) until April 2015.
In February 2013 Leith O'Malley presented a new series of work focusing on the journals of the Australian explorer "Edward John Eyre" . This work forms part of a large group exhibition titled "Tough(er) Love" which showcases artists of the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia.
It has been curated by noted arts writer John Neylon.
Of the Eyre series Neylon writes "O’Malley’s approach to the subject of Edward John Eyre typifies the artist’s attitude to life and to the role of art in throwing up new ways of looking at things. In many respects it resembles the strategies used by Sydney Nolan when creating his Ned Kelly series.
In this series fact, fiction and fantasy combined to create iconic images that have endured. Like Nolan, O’Malley treats incongruity as the only way to come to terms with the history of the man (EJE) and his arduous journey along the West Coast and across the Great Australian Bight".
Eyre Peninsula is a tougher place than most in which to make art. The region, so far removed from perceived centres of culture with their audiences, galleries and art schools, demands that its artists be very self-reliant and resourceful. To survive and develop as an artist takes a special kind of commitment. But it gives much in return as a place which offers a sense of freedom from urbanised life, access to landscapes of spectacular beauty and traditional significance, and the knowledge or sense of belonging to this place, known to many as the ‘West Coast.’
In 2010 selected artists from across the region and from different cultural and personal perspectives were invited to explore and express the complexities of this ‘tough love’ affair from which there is ultimately no walking away, no letting go.
The outcome is Tough(er) Love, to be presented by Country Arts SA in association with Flinders University Art Museum, at the Flinders City Gallery.
Comprising new work by both Indigenous and non-Indigenous painters and sculptors – John Baily, Cindy Durant, Amanda Franklin, Siv Grava, Joylene Haynes, Karl James, Elma Lawrie, Verna Lawrie, Beaver Lennon, Leith O’Malley, Pungkai and John Turpie – the exhibition reflects the practices of those working out of larger population centres including Port Lincoln, Whyalla and Ceduna, as well as smaller regional communities.
Mick Bennett (AKA Rusty Bonnett) is a multi instrumentalist performing and recording artist who also hails from the Western Peninsula area of South Australia. He is noted for his rootsy, blues driven performances and has recently released a debut CD. One of the tracks (Walk around my Bedside) is included in the background during the video.
You can view a recent live performance from Rusty here - nme.com/nme-video/youtube/id/ZiS8ug3phn8
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