Morning Sketch

I spent about an hour and forty minutes drawing and painting this outside today. Usually I draw outside and paint inside. This is the historic fire station on Argyle Street in Hobart, Tasmania.

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Hobart Fire Brigade

My thoughts are with those in New South Wales and Queensland where bush fires are raging. Three lives and over 150 homes have been lost. I hope the wind changes direction to stop the fires in their track and that good soaking rain falls upon the scorched and blistering dry land. Take care, everybody.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope that the upcoming week is kind to you.

Cheers, PJ Paintings

 

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Purging Fears

Hobart, in Tasmania, must be fast becoming the bravest city in the world, as more and more of our fears and worries are getting burned into oblivion, with another Ogoh-Ogoh being burnt to a crisp on the last day of the Dark Mofo Festival.   During the week, Hobartians were invited to write their fears and worries down and deposit them into Ogoh-Ogoh.

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Ogoh-Ogoh procession

The annual Balinese festival has been adopted by Tasmania, with a bit of adaption. The Balinese festival aims to restore alignment between the seen world of humans and animals and the unseen world of the spirits.  Large and often ugly Ogoh-Ogoh figures are jostled and turned in circles to confuse them and then burnt, sending the spirits off with the smoke. Then the whole island of Bali observes a day of silence.

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Ogoh-Ogoh’s nest and tree

Hobart’s Ogoh-Ogoh this year is the swift parrot.

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Hobart’s fear container being moved into position
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Nestling in – poor thing doesn’t know what is about to happen
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The base of the tree is lit and the loudest procession of fire crackers and fireworks go off
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the burning

… and then everything burns and we exit fearless and brave, with our ears ringing and dodging large bits of falling burning embers.

Fear Burning

Hobart’s winter festival of Dark Mofo, created and funded by self-made multi-millionaire, David Walsh, and the Hobart City Council, came to a close, ushering in the Festival of Voices. David Walsh is the founder of the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) and single-handily put Tasmania on the map and increased the state’s tourism.

Each year, a massive sculpture for Dark Mofo is created, to make a large fear-jar, so-to-speak, for people to write and deposit their fears into. This year’s sculpture was a huge spider.  People’s fears were collected and stored in the spider’s egg sacks.

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A large fear-jar

With much-a-do, music, dance and costumes, a procession walks the sculpture, and the fears of Hobart, down the city streets for it to be annihilated by fire.

Dark Mofo

I found it to be quite powerful imagery, and the act of articulating your fears then witnessing the burning of it, gone, ka-poot, liberating.  The ball of fire was enormous when the spider caught fire.  Here’s a couple of photos of the spider’s web and egg pouches burning.

 

I like Salvador Dali’s gem of wisdom, “have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it.”

Soledad O’Brien is quoted saying that “I’ve learned that fear limits you and your vision. It serves as blinders to what may be just a few steps down the road for you. The journey is valuable, but believing in your talents, your abilities, and your self-worth can empower you to walk down an even brighter path. Transforming fear into freedom – how great is that?”

On that note, here’s to fear-burning, whatever the fear/s may be.