20 years later: Ginny Green

Published in Art Collector, Issue 80, April-June 2017

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Seriously, if you’re ever feeling jaded about the art world, this woman is your cure. Sydney-based art collector Ginny Green is such a fierce supporter of art and artists. Plus she has a phenomenal eye. The full four-page feature is in the current issue of Art Collector.

Oh and happy birthday to Art Collector! The magazine celebrates its 20th anniversary this issue. Surviving in the art and publishing worlds is a tough gig.

Who the bloody hell are we

Published in Art Collector, Issue 79, Jan-Mar 2017

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Jane O’Sullivan previews the multi-venue exhibition that the Australian contemporary art world has been waiting for.

The National. Another gumtree exhibition about what it means to be Australian? “Absolutely not,” says the MCA’s curatorial & digital director Blair French with a laugh. He admits it’s a provocative title but says that’s part of the point. “What it does is throws up the question, if you’re not creating a nationalist show or trying to work at ideas of nationhood, which we’re not, then how can you use that title to problematise those ideas?”

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Beyond the border

Published in the Australian Financial Review Magazine, March 2016

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Well, you could probably write a book on the topic of Australian artists and the struggles they’ve faced making it overseas. I almost did.

Luckily, only the six-page version made it out into the world, as part of the Australian Financial Review Magazine’s annual arts issue.

The featured artists Patricia Piccinini, Alex Seton and Christian Thompson are among those who are starting to get more international recognition – here’s to that!

Read full story

Update: Patricia Piccinini’s amazing Brasilian exhibition, which I talk about in this story, made it to #2 in The Art Newspaper’s list of most popular exhibitions in 2016.

Know your source: Buying Aboriginal art ethically

Published in Art Edit, Issue 2, Apr-Jun 2014

The next time you fall in love with a piece of Aboriginal art, before you reach for your credit card take the time to ask whether the artist who made the work was treated fairly. We walk you through what you need to know about buying Aboriginal art ethically.

When Aboriginal art began to boom in the late 1980s and 1990s, the smell of money attracted all sorts of players. Sadly not all the work bought and hung on art lovers’ walls during this time resulted in a fair price being paid to the artist. Other unethical practices also came to light, such as the removal of artists from their communities, which was done with the aim of quickly securing a large volume of artwork for sale and not always with the full consent of artists and their families.

The situation raised complex ethical issues about buying and owning Aboriginal art. How can you trace the work’s source? And how do you know if the artist has been dealt with respectfully in the commercial exchanges around the sale of their artwork?
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In a land far, far away

Published in Luxury Travel, Issue 51, Winter 2012

From Broome Jane O’sullivan took a two-hour flight to the Mitchell Plateau then a 15-minute helicopter transfer to reach the Kimberley Coastal Camp, the latest addition to Australia’s high-end travel experiences. The aching remoteness is of course part of the experience, the rest is all about what the camp’s expert guides showed her in this untouched, ancient part of our continent.

“We’re lucky it’s a cool day,” says Kev, striding on ahead. It was 39 degrees Celsius in the shade when we left, and it certainly isn’t any cooler in the full blast of the Kimberley sun. But Kev is one of those hardened country men with a battered akubra and sun-leathered skin, who clearly has a different definition of normal to us city slickers.

We’re bushwalking near the Lawley River, behind the Mitchell Plateau in far north Western Australia. It is without doubt the most remote place I’ve ever been. Most of the bushwalking I do is on nicely groomed trails in national parks, with tidy steps and handrails and trailmarkers, not bush-bashing through spinifex and hopping over boulders. I feel privileged to be out and about in such an untouched and breathtakingly beautiful corner of our country – but I do wish I had some gaiters. That spinifex is prickly stuff.

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