Stories Around A Work for Clandulla State Gallery 2015-17

Umbrella Studio contemporary arts, Townsville, Queensland
27 January - 5 March 2017


An Email

On another subject:

I was thinking (cause its something I can't seem to stop doing) that your work, 'Painting Takes a Walk' (Wall Painting: The Exhibitions) might be a perfect fit for an exhibition at The Clandulla State Gallery.  I founded a State Gallery, I might have mentioned it to Hayley, but its the world's largest art gallery with 1400 hectares of exhibition space (it also a State forest of the same name).  I do realise that it might be tricky to transport your work and the remoteness of the gallery will mean it will get an audience of maybe five people (but five really good people), but we can also take some photographs of it and put them up on the interweb to make all the people couldn't make it jealous.  Its just an idea, but if it's just too much hassle and exasperation I completely understand.  The forest, you understand, has no funding. It is sad, and like art in many ways.

Alex Wisser, 11/9/2015



You make me the kind of artist I want to be but can't be without you

The journey to Clandulla began with a farewell to Sydney College of the Arts. We collected a 3m stretched canvas plinth that Hayley had been rogue storing in the Painting studio for a few years and a roll of canvas Carla had buried in the storeroom. With nowhere to store the plinth, this trip would be the last iteration of the work. So, with a little help from the Kean brothers, we took the plinth along for the ride. This remnant from Hayley's practice then ebbed its way into our collaborative work.

The photographs taken of the plinth in the forest were exhibited in I like it best when we are talking about Painting at NORTH space in June 2016. One as a collaborative work: A work for Katie Williams; and one sitting somewhere in the grey area in-between: You make me the kind of artist I want to be but can't be without you, Hayley Megan French with Carla Liesch.




In the background of this trip we were also working on our mailing project YOU ARE ONE OF THE REASONS I MAKE ART. Our second stop was to pick up our cards from The Distillery press. While little progress was actually made on our mailing list, we stumbled across these beautiful seed packets at the Rylstone food festival which inspired our choice of envelope.

We left our first card on the fridge at Kandos Projects.



Will this fit out the door?... We'll build fold-out legs

After two days of debating 'at what size does a canvas become a wall?', it turned out that Carla really just wanted to build a canvas with fold-out legs. So we did that. It also helped with the curve of the earth. It actually worked.



A Video for Clandulla State Gallery

Shout out to Alex and Dave for their excellent assistance with installing the wall. We highly recommend listening to Monument - Royksopp feat. Robyn at full volume while watching this video.



A new artist profile picture for Hayley

Photo by Alex Wisser

Photo by Alex Wisser

There’s no way you can locate a thought that has taken place between two people.
— Alex Wisser, in coversation for the exhibition essay
A work for Clandulla State Gallery 3.jpg

We heard a lot of stories and recollections about Clandulla State Forest while we were documenting the work. In particular we talked about the way the light shifted our experience of the place. It almost stormed. 



Painting Takes a Walk II, 2015



An Opening

Opening reception, 5 November 2015

The opening was followed by a tour of the remnants of Dave Standfield's work for the Clandulla State Gallery Survey Show.



A Sign for Clandulla State Gallery


"Thank you @hayleymeganfrench and @carlaliesch for installing your beautiful work in Clandulla State Gallery. And then, after noticing we didn't have any gilded signage, you made and installed this beautiful sign. Thank you so much and come back soon!"

@cementafestival 6 November 2015

Back at Kandos Projects we had a little local help in creating the sign.



The Painting Is Painting Itself

The life of the wall documented by Alex Wisser and emailed to us with the subject line 'The painting is painting itself' in April 2016.



From Clandulla to Umbrella

1,907km apart the wall still stands concurrent to the exhibition A Work for Clandulla State Gallery at Umbrella Studios.



This blog was created for the exhibition A Work for Clandulla State Gallery held at Umbrella Studio Contemporary Arts in Townsville, 27 January - 5 March 2017. All images and video used were taken by the artists unless otherwise stated. Documentation of the exhibition will follow. An exhibition essay written by Alex Wisser can be found in Writing.