Thursday, March 29, 2012


I'm up against an immoveable deadline to complete yet another bit of of my exegesis (writing so aint my thang!)... so I take any opportunity I can to run away from the task!

 Look what I found in the garden this morning....


Amaryllis belladonna and 'friend'

I'm not too good on my bug identification 
- so I'm unsure if this beauty is a mantis or a phasmid  (or other! please chime in insect people!)

what a lovely diversion....

I'm trying to write a chapter about how Pragmatic philosophy comes into play in my HDR project..... Most philosophy does my head in - (mind you I do enjoy the Philosophy Bites podcast...)

Pragmatism (Dewey style) is the only thing that resonates with me (those French guys - Derrida, Lacan, Lyotard and Foucault - do nothing for me - I'm so NOT a post-modern gal)

Here are a couple of Dewey excerpts from 'Art as Experience' and 'Experience and Nature' that I've been given a lot of thought to lately (especially in relation to my 'art gesture' things....) 

“Art is a quality of doing and of what is done”

“… there is a difference between the art product (statue, painting or whatever), and the work of art. The first is physical and potential; the latter is active and experienced. It is what the product does, its working."

“Empirical study/research proves that observation e.g. experience is the primary method for understanding/ knowledge – thus experience is the scientific standard for understanding nature: experience and nature are not opposing ideas. If we don’t use experience as the method to understand then we must do away with empirical research all together." 

(ok time to get my nose back to the grindstone...)


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

a little left of field...

Dear all....  

I'd like to share something that you might feel compelled to also share.


This is about mining our (aussie) farmlands - the damage it does to farmland and the environment, to families and rural communities. I'm lucky that our farm is not directly threatened (at the moment.... the big survey planes scanned our area for mining potential last year.... we seriously considered bringing out the shotgun and taking a potshot at the low flying bastards.... but I digress...)

For those of you not aware - Australian farmers do not own the mineral rights on their properties. This is controlled by the government (generally this means State government) - and the government can (as it does) give any company it favours open slather on our farms.  Our nation's prime farmlands are being turned into mining wastelands and farming families and rural communities are tossed aside without a thought (and even less financial compensation... not that your heritage has a price tag). All for a minuscule mining royalty (please follow the given links for all the facts and figures - including the percentage of overseas ownership of mining operations). It is a desperate and dreadful situation and one that I feel personally incensed by.

When Sophie asked if I would share a poster in support of the cause I agreed without hesitation. Later today I will be sharing this with my email contacts, my fb friends, and with tumblr and twitter followers, and I hope that some will stop and consider the plight of farmers and consider what all this mining means. I hope that many of you will stand in solidarity - show your support by spreading the message, or (for little aussies everywhere) contact your local state and federal member and demand immediate change.

This is not something that only affects a handful of farmers far from anywhere - this is (Y)OUR food supply, this is (Y)OUR land, this is (Y)OUR heritage, this is (Y)OUR future, this is (Y)OUR issue.

links with info and further ways to be involved:

ABC News
'Lock the Gate' Alliance
The Conversation
Six degrees
Get Up
You -Tube (aerial view of Tara in Qld - take a look at what gas seam mining means...)

(please feel free to share the info in this post with every person you know)



Saturday, March 17, 2012

happy gnomes day...

In some parts of the world today it is St Patricks Day.... 
but in Cobargo - it's the inaugural Gnomes Day

We had to be elsewhere during the festivities - 
but we popped up town (late) to capture the remnants of the party...

(some gnomes apparently partied a tad too hard..)

(ps if you are travelling through Cobargo in the next while - 
keep your eyes open for the little collection of gnomes - 
right in the middle of town)

I wonder how long they will be allowed to squat on the vacant block 
before the local council comes and evicts them?


Thursday, March 15, 2012

when life gives you lemons...

make lemonade!

or lemon butter, lemon cordial, lemon marmalade, limoncello or easiest of all - preserved lemons!

Preserved Lemons (ronnie style)

thoroughly scrub whole lemons
cut into segments (quartered if small, 6th's if larger)
mix in bowl with course salt (approx ratio 250g salt for every 10 whole lemons)
juice the same number of lemons and set juice aside
sterilise wide mouthed jars (I sterilise my preserving jars by first giving them a hot soapy wash and rinse - then set them in a medium oven (180C) for 20 mins....)
when jars are cool add to each - salted lemon segments, one bay leaf, 3-4 whole cloves, small piece of cinnamon stick

sprinkle extra salt, add lemon juice to cover segments
seal and set aside for at least one month.

ps - don't panic if you see a white mould appearing on the lemons - all is ok!

mmm in a couple of months your preserved lemons will be soft (including the peel) and ready to use in all manner of dishes - I make a lemon baked chicken by stuffing the cavity of a whole chicken (free range & organic of course) with preserved lemon segments and pour a little of the lemony juice over the chicken skin and sprinkle with herbs/ spices of choice (this is a big hit with all the meat eaters in the family)


the mighty lemon rules beyond the plate

Over the last couple of months I've been experimenting with making my own lemon-based cleaning products including lemon vinegar and citrus enzyme cleaner

lemon vinegar cleaner

mix together lemon slices, lemon juice, white vinegar, water (you can vary the percentages of vinegar to water.... I've been trialling 3-2 vinegar to water)... add a couple of squeezed lemons per litre.  Leave the mix for at least one month before using as an all purpose surface cleaner ....
the lemon leaves a nice scent and the lemon/vinegar combo has a mild bleaching effect which I found great on bathroom tiles and grout..... and left the shower smelling like a lemon explosion! ps sprinkle bi-carb onto the lemony vinegar for extra cleaning oompf)


citrus enzyme cleaner
(a weird little beastie!)

take some of your left over lemon/orange/alternate citrus peels
chop and add these to a 2L container and fill to about 4/5ths with water add 100gms brown sugar

now - leave this for at least 3 months before use... in the first couple of weeks make sure you release the gases that will be building (mmmmmm fermentation!) by leaving the top a little bit loose and checking the mix every few days... never tighten the top and leave (or you'll come back to an exploded bottle)

by accounts citrus enzyme cleaners can be diluted then used as -

a floor/surface cleaner
add to clothes wash or as a pre-soaker
a windows and mirrors
cleaning vegies as you peel them (? I haven't tried this... but I suspect the left over enzyme wash water would be fab in the compost!)
inside the fridge (leaving a nice citrus aroma - I'm waiting to see how well it inhibits the return of mould...)


aren't lemons wonderful!


Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Hands up if you've watched/read/thought about 
the Occupy movement over the last few months?

(kinda hard not to notice wot?... its influence even found its way to Cobargo...

so have you also heard about Occupy Museums?
If you haven't encountered it -  here's what it's all about 

"Art and culture are part of the commons. Art is not a luxury item.

However, many art and cultural museums are currently run by and for the 1%. Economic interests dictate what art is accessible, successful, and desirable. Institutions often have board members who are part of the 1%. Galleries and museums increasingly operate as profit-driven business. In this system, money and power define what is art, and what is not. This system is cutting into the livelihoods of artists and art workers, and has emaciated the breadth of art available to the public. 

Occupy Museums seeks to occupy our art galleries, museums and cultural institutions with the ideas, values, histories and art of the 99%.  Like our government, which no longer represents the people, museums have sold out to the highest bidder. We are a direct action group within the Occupy Wall Street movement. We bring attention to the most glaring problems within the current system and imagine alternatives. At Occupy Wall Street, we are taking the steps toward a future where our cultural commons are truly shared not hoarded by the few.

Occupy Museums!"

and here's a sound bite from Barbara Pollack on Artnet....

"... Occupy Museums raises important questions. Why, for instance, does our highly developed art scene ignore important issues of financial and social justice yet deliver up spot paintings to great acclaim? Why cannot museums function as contemporary commons, rather than as reputation-laundering facilities for hedge-fund managers and corporations?"


"If you want to restore your sense that change is possible in the art world, I recommend that you check out Occupy Museums ... If you're too cold or old to come out to an action, or if you own a Damien Hirst, just pass this information on."


just thought I'd throw those bits into the ring for you all to mull over 
(that's what I get up to on my pretend days off!)

ps - this Saturday March 17
(aka St Pats Day)
all Gnomes and their friends are invited to 
a Gnome Party in Cobargo


Saturday, March 10, 2012

another day - another exhibition...

Sculpture on the Edge
Bermagui 2012

yes I know I'm teasing with the arty shots

here's a whole mess of colourful piccies I've taken today...

anyone what to guess which one is my favourite?


Friday, March 9, 2012

portrait of an exhibition opening...

Bega Valley Regional Gallery this evening...

Matt Jones (Mister Jones)
current FSCLAP scholarship recipient 


(if I spy correctly that's Genevieve Lacey
with a chuckling RADO Andrew Gray and the man of the hour Matt)

  portrait of mother and child

 portrait subject taking pic of portrait

portrait of 'birdie' watching the duel of the Nikons

(Stan - editor of Narooma News and I have a whole pile of pics 
of us both doing 'the dueling Nikons' at opening events.... )

Matt (and Miro) 
and Poppy (FSCLAP el presidente) 
and Karen (Narek Galleries and FSCLAP foundation member) 
with 'bunny' portrait


Thursday, March 8, 2012

blow hole...

 the kiama blowhole this morn (from inside the parked car!)
don't get me started on what we were all doing in such vile weather 
many miles from home....

its been a long day

but on our return I stumbled over an excellent post 
about pinterest and copyright:

food for thought wot...

(ps here's another interesting post discussing how to have your copyright images
removed from pinterest or other places...... juicy wot!)


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

after the rains (it's autumn)...

As farmers, we rise early - predawn most mornings
the big rains have now passed 
(temporarily we're told)
the mornings are getting crisp and are often foggy

phil leaves for the dairy in the dark - dropping sass up town first to swim laps
we girls come up later (for EJ to swim laps!  we have EXTREMELY sporty kiddies)

this morning at the end of our drive...

mmmmm I smell cool days ahead...

I have much exegesis writing to undertake in the coming weeks


some days I'd like to snuggle down under the blankets with a big book 
and spend the day lolling about reading..... 

oh what bliss!


Friday, March 2, 2012

wet wet wet wet wet wet wet....

many folk in oz know 
its very very very WET in NSW right now..

Sams Creek today
flood waters around here rise quickly and recede quite quickly too
(this is WAAAAY lower than yesterday)

 dang the water is LOUD over the rocks!

I had to go to Bega today 

Bega river flooded yesterday (only minor floooding - river is now in smart retreat)
this is the still swamped playing fields under the Bega bridge
(or as farmer phil calls it - 'our old place'... 
yep this was his grandfathers farm up until the mid 1970s 
when the state government resumed the land to build the new bridge)

 yes I know - I'm taking pics while driving again...
I blame my father who used to simultaneously shoot video and drive AND talk on the CB radio .... 
bad dad

the bureau of meteorology (aka the BOM) 
predict more big rain tomorrow and sunday
la nina is certainly making her presence known!

we watch and wait


ps I got word yesterday that I have been shortlisted as a finalist 

small waa-hoo and happy dance