Post Industrial Design

Star appearance - Westography

Maria is the star of our current exhibition Westography by local photographer Warren Kirk. Today she popped in to the gallery to see what all the fuss is about. And what did she think . . . well she finds it quite funny that people are recognising her in the street. Someone even stopped her for her autograph! Maria though is taking it all in her stride and not letting it go to her head.


Westography Opening

Over 100 people attended Warren Kirks photography exhibition, Westography. It was such a fun night and people are still stopping me to say what a fantastic exhibition it was. If you haven't had a chance to pop down yet it well worth a look. The exhibition runs till the 31st of May. Here are a few pics from the evening taken by the amazing Aaron Maguire Aaron is a local filmmaker/photographer and will be doing a few things for our upcoming exhibitions.  

Westography Opens tonight

Warren Kirks exhibition opening is tonight from 6 - 8pm. With help from his good friends Sally and Dave, Warren came in last night to hang the show. What can I say . . . you are in for a treat! It looks fantastic. If you cant make it tonight the exhibition runs till the 31st of this month.  

WESTOGRAPHY by Warren Kirk

May is our daughter’s middle name, the title of a 2002 American horror flick starring Angela Bettis, and apparently Brain Tumor Awareness month (yep I do not lie) . . . BUT most importantly it is the month we are hosting our next exhibition - WESTOGRAPHY by local photographer Warren Kirk. Warren is a lover of all things old, a hunter and collector of images and a documenter of the past. At a time when the area is going through rapid change and development, Warren has meticulously documented ‘old school Footscray’ and surrounding suburbs with intuition and heart. It is easy to make Warren squirm . . . just call him an artist. But you know what folks . . . . he really is! Join us for the opening on May 17th from 6 – 8pm. Exhibition runs till the 31st of May.

Coat racks by Jos Van Hulsen

For some reason it is Jos's work that I always to neglect to get up on our website?? Sorry Jos! By far our most popular product has been his bicycle coat rack’s. Each one is hand made from steel and recycled timbers, which are now available to purchase on our online store. Jos recently was commissioned to do a number of these racks for Kathmandu stores in New Zealand and more recently in Melbourne. I will post some pics of them as soon the new Kathmandu fit outs are completed. Included in the range of photos is a picture of Jos in our backyard (gardening is not my strong point) as well as jos working on some of the coat racks in the studio. 

Artist Demonstration – Olivia Duval

We are lucky enough to have Olivia Duval coming to Post Industrial Design to demonstrate her skills for the closing weekend of  our current Steamscape exhibition. Swing by anytime between 2pm and 5pm on Sunday the 25th to watch as Olivia Duval brings to life one of her exquisitely detailed sculptures. Dressed in theme Olivia will work meticulously on her latest creation. I am sure while I was hacking off my Barbie’s hair and defiling their faces with texta, Olivia Duval was probably making fine costumes and accessories to create a world of beauty and wonder . . . . I on the other hand was set on a path of disfigurement. Rarely did a doll of mine survive with all limbs in tact and practically all ended up bald! Perhaps this is why Olivia has a consortium of commissions under her belt and I have . . um. . well, none! Olivia Duval wandered into the world of collectible sculpture when her high school friend saw a little elf doll she wanted in a shop window and Olivia said she would simply make her a replica. She has since made nearly 100 sculptures of increasing complexity and now takes commissions for exquisitely detailed characters, such as the Lord Chamberlain skekis from The Dark Crystal. Inspired by Brian Froud's artwork and production design on this film and on Labyrinth she began running lavish, costumed public events to emulate these gloriously beautiful worlds. She has since run the events Labyrinth Masquerade 2007 & 2008, Arcadiance: The Fantasy Masquerade Ball, Pirates of the Yarribean Cruise and the Where In Melbourne Is Carmen Sandiego Game Day. Olivia's main love is film production. She has worked on numerous short films, as well as the feature films Catwoman and I, Robot in Canada and in the special effects studio for Melbourne's The Loved Ones. She is currently developing new Carmen and Pirate game days under Golden Owl Events, a Jim Henson's Storyteller-esque show for the Fringe Festival, and some steampunk and fairy tale short films.

A bookish tale - Jessica Dean

How did the Idea for your children’s book come about? The idea for Gertrude came while myself (Jessica Dean) and Marc Eiden were preparing a pitch for an animated music video. The clip fell through, but the idea wouldn’t let go, so Jessica set to writing a first draft. Marc and I have worked together many times over the years - on animations, short films, video clips and other writing projects - but I always had a desire to create a children’s book. Once the story was a solid first draft, Marc began drawing the illustrations and then the pair set to bringing his images into the computer and to transform them into their final form. A major consideration was how all three elements: story, illustrations and design could come together - it was important that all elements of the book really sing and that was where the broader collaboration evolved, including Sean Hogan and Kim Aleksandrowicz of Trampoline Design. Being a non-writer myself, I am always intrigued as to where you would start in writing a book?? The mind boggles – did you already have the story in your head? When I write, my ideas always start with images. Then I think about how I can interpret what I’m seeing in my head and transform it into story. In the case of Gertrude, the story needed to be compelling and exciting and create a world that children would want to explore.  It is not a traditional picture book in the sense that it’s quite a long story and there are some ‘big’ words weaved in - but I don’t think you should ever dumb things down for children. Learning is a wonderful experience and getting lost in a book is one of the best things going. I really do hope children and grown-ups enjoy it. Marc your illustrations are amazing!! Can you tell me a bit about your process and your technique ‘visual sampling’ – what’s that all about? From the get go, I really wanted the images to be tactile, textured, to feel alive and jump off the page. For the artwork I worked with Jess, which was great to bounce ideas and also it was great to collaborate, share ideas and the workload and it was great to see what Jess had come up with. Every element of each character and all the backgrounds are made up of photographs of textures. You can easily see the textures in some of the images, but not all and I hope kids try and guess which textures were used and have some fun with it. I come from a background of art and hip hop and the artwork for Gertrude was very similar to traditional sampling. We took little bits from all over the place and it took time to find all the right elements to make it work, I guess it was like a kind of visual sampling. It’s taking the traditional collage technique that was used so well in books like the hungry caterpillar and turning it up to 11. The thing I love most about Gertrude is that all the elements appear to work seamlessly together. I know this is something you were working hard to achieve. For this you brought in a professional designer Sean Hogan from Trampoline Design. How did this work to create the look you were trying to achieve? The job of the designer is to compile the total book and make it whole. The task was two fold: to compile the illustrations and make sure they read succinctly in the layout and also design the typography so it equaled the illustrations. They key is to get a marriage between the illustration and typography right.  I wanted the typography to be another character, another illustrative part of the book. Typefaces have voices and character and are kind of imbued with their own history. I developed a series of rules that I applied throughout the book and very quickly the typography started to bounce around and have it’s own voice - in a concrete poetry kind of way. But I also wanted it to retain some timelessness – an echo of classic children’s books. The best part is that we’ve put our own individual thoughts of what Gertrude should be, but its been a true collaboration where the product is the most important thing, not just each of our opinions. The second you remove ego from the equation, is when you are all working towards the same goal, no matter what the process or what’s required for you to do. You decided to self publish Gertrude. To do this you pulled in Kim Aleksandrowicz from Trampoline Design – what have you learnt from this collaboration? Save your money. And plan as much as you can. It’s always much more difficult to work on the fly and try to put out fires all the time. If you have an idea in your head, it’s much easier to take those steps and project in the future what you need to do. You need to do your research and you need to be flexible. Collaboration seems to be integral to your process. How do you feel this has added to your work? Marc and I have worked together many times over the years and we bring different things to whatever project we work on but a commonality is our desire for quality and difference. Marc has such an open mind and he is so full of ideas. 90 per cent of the collaboration for Gertrude was with Marc and without Marc the book as it is just wouldn’t exist. I also had the privilege of working with Sean Hogan & Kim Aleksandrowicz of Trampoline Design and Gertrude has benefited hugely from their ideas, influence and dedication. We had a really clear idea of what we wanted the book to look like, but Sean was instrumental in guiding us through the process and taking the project to a higher level, so we ended up with such a beautiful end product. Kim has also been integral. Her advice and knowledge guided me in all the right directions and thanks to Kim the book is printed on the stock it is – which has just come up so beautifully. I was really lucky to collaborate with such talented people who came onto this project with a lot of generosity and honesty. Working with them has been absolutely brilliant. I think when you collaborate you do need to work with people you trust and respect. It can be a tricky thing, but for me it was about giving them as much freedom as I could because it had to be an enjoyable process for them also. I feel very privileged that everyone was willing to give huge amounts of their time to my story and take it beyond me and make it something that belongs to all of us. We all created it. It’s a very rare and powerful thing and I’m very humbled.

Sarah Watts work up for grabs

For all those people that missed out on purchasing a Sarah Watt original, there is still hope. Such that she was, Sarah had donated two beautiful hand painted photographs to Big West as part of a fundraiser for this years Festival. But Shhhh . . .  it is a silent auction and the auction finishes on the 27th. The works are on display at the fabulous Substation in Newport until the 27th of November - so if you want to check it out I suggest you get a move on. Apologies for the badly cropped photos of Sarah's work - but hopefully they give you a little taste for what is in store. There is nothing like seeing it in the flesh! So dust of your wallets and head on down to the Substation. Sarah has shown us once again her generosity, so I am sure someone out there can match it. Happy bidding - it's all for a good cause!!
  • Page 1 of 2
  • Page 1 of 2