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Nigerian Contemporary Art Booms

Concrete art design architecture

Concrete is a builder’s chameleon, with the strength of stone but taking any form he or she chooses. In Western Australia “Margaret River Youth Precinct” is a cast concrete skate park built by Convic in 1999 and redeveloped in 2018 and fashioned after the waves and surf culture that make Margaret River famous.

Concrete’s monumental force and its ability to project weightlessness project a sense of the spiritual in three religious buildings, Glen Murcutt’s “Australian Islamic Centre” 2016 and Angelo Candelpas designed “Punchbowl Mosque” 2018, the latter which uses concrete’s sculptural qualities to create a series of repeated patterns, monuments to the Islamic faith in Australian suburbia. Likewise Baldasso Cortese’s “Tarrawarra Abbey” 2016 provides a refuse to monks in the Victorian landscape of the Yarra Valley, using the textured surfaces of concrete embedded with embossed crosses provide an atmosphere of “clarity, permanency, confidence and calm”, as Leanne Amodeo describes it.


Photography, Art Zen

Sometimes you know about two things in completely different parts of your brain, and then one day, for no reason, you put them together and your head explodes — a cascade of understandings like the last scene in “Usual Suspects”. After 40 years of taking pictures, that happened to me. One idea changed me overnight. And if you have a camera it will change you, too.

There is absolutely no doubt that it’s important to understand how your camera works if you want to take consistently great photos. Even with the powerful automatic (and artificial intelligence) built in, I would still say a photographer should understand the three branches of photographic government: shutter speed, f-stop, and ISO. They form checks and balances, and work together, to achieve your photographic vision.


Can the art world clean up its act?

“Panic. Absolute bloody panic.” A senior gallerist is describing the first reaction of fellow members of the Society of London Art Dealers to new regulations to combat money laundering in the art market.

I’m hardly surprised: even after 15 years of covering the art world as a journalist, I’m often amazed by its peculiar codes and customs, still substantially based on relationships, private agreements and trust. But this old-school way of doing things, which provides a climate ripe for exploitation by the unscrupulous, is under challenge from the modern world.