Art is story telling. Hidden meanings or not it is story telling. Putting marks on surfaces or sculpting a response to home is story telling. If we take long enough with marks on paper or sculptures the works will play with our imaginations, teasing out our own responses and affecting our emotions. On Friday mornings this year a small group of street artists at Jugglers Art Space have been preparing for their “Favela” [slum] show on June 29, finding new ways of putting marks on surfaces, drawing, canvas stretching and preparing a body of work for their first public showing of saleable art. “Favelas” house the very poor and marginalised in South America and the Favela stories resonate with Brisbane street artists as marginalised by virtue of their choice of art form, surface and medium. Randal Breen [former Director of Jugglers Art Space] was commissioned by the Pine Rivers Art Gallery to prepare sculptured works that would tell his story of “Our House – Celebrating the Place we call home.” [Opened on Friday June 1- June 30].Randal’s strong social justice values found a voice in his works as they depicted the struggle for affordable housing, a “stilted” journey to comfort and security, a familiar story when we dig long enough here in Brisbane.
Elder Abuse was a photodocumentary at Jugglers Art Space on Wednesday May 30 by University of Queensland photographer Gemma-Rose Turnbull and Caxton Street Legal Service. Highlighting the stories of abuse in text and 40 poignant images, this event evoked strong feelings from attendees. A story of systemic abuse from Social Workers down to family relatives was a wake up call for me. Jugglers is a place for stories to be told safely and with respect.
Handle with Care [June 1, Level 1 Jugglers Art Space] featured the deeply personal stories of vulnerability from art therapists John Rohrig and Tania Balil and Paige Jayne, their friend. When stories of vulnerability are represented in fired clay, mixed media and performance the sense is overwhelming and to some degree, healing.
Save my Soul [Saturday June 2, Jugglers Art Space] featured the amazing music of Brisbane Band The Scrapes and Melbourne based composer and guitarist Cam Butler. Accompanied by video installation Cam’s existential instrumental story journey through “Desolation” to”Some kind of Peace” was overwhelmingly haunting.
Art as story telling has been rich this week.