Monday, November 1, 2010

Smith Street

The Edge: Bruce Earles (2010). Photographed by Julie Clarke and reproduced with kind permission of the artist.
I did a little shopping down Smith Street, today and happened upon Bruce Earles setting up for his exhibition, which will open at Hogan Gallery, 310 Smith Street, Collingwood on Thursday night at 6pm. I don't know Bruce, but I really enjoyed viewing his ten or so large paintings, which are very colorful orderly/disorderly scenes that are both amusing and intelligent. Indeed the paintings, structured as they were, looked like contemporary hieroglyphs. Some of the repeated images reminded me of the subject matter of artists involved in the Roar collective that I used to frequent in the early 90s. In fact, Bruce verified that he had been one of the founding members. I ventured on down Smith Street, searching for the shop that sells Taiwanese floor cushions, only to be confronted by the extremely bad behavior of drunks and drug addicts, shouting at the top of their voices and asking people for money. I then understood why there appeared to be such a large police presence in the street, but even this fact didn't stop those being unruly. I have a love/hate relationship with Smith Street - great vibe, good shops and galleries, but the clientele can be a little taxing.

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