The end is nigh, so here’s a bonus poem

Greg by Abigail Robertson
‘Greg’ by Abigail Robertson, the inspiration for poems by Rachel O’Neill

Weathering the Future is entering its last days, so please pop into the Backspace gallery to survey this collaborative discussion of what awaits around the corner.

The gallery is open Thursday 20 December until Sunday 23 December, noon-4pm, and if you’re still looking for a Christmas present (for yourself even!), well, much of the art is for sale. Also, there are handsome magazine-style catalogues that collect all the art and text in one handy volume, selling for $20.

Twenty-two writers used artwork as inspiration for flash fiction and poetry, which in turn inspired new art, in what is a fairly uncommon collaboration for an art exhibition. Two of our writers got so inspired, they submitted two poems, but only one each could be used.

To mark the final run of the exhibition at Backspace, here is the poem from Rachel O’Neill that didn’t get used in Weathering the Future, responding to Abigail Robertson’s painting ‘Greg’. [click here to read, or hear, Rachel’s other poem alongside the art it was inspired by and which it in turn inspired.] Enjoy:

Poised for contemplation,
Considering the past,
Weathering the future
How long will this life last?

Lyrically thinking,
This world exists in rhyme,
And those who live for reason
Are simply wasting time.

Smile a little wider,
Hide your weary tears,
Thoughts that are too tedious
Can snatch away your years.

The exhibition has two ways for visitors to contribute: ‘Precipice’ asks visitors to write on, or simply fold, a chatterbox to be added to this work in progress, while messages in prose or verse can be added to the comment wall, and may appear on this blog. We’d love to read your contributions!

Bonus poem as exhibition resumes on Thursday

Unbearable...so you think I can eat plastic by Ken Makings
Unbearable…so you think I can eat plastic by Ken Makings. Picture: Ian Kemp
Backspace gallery is open Thursday 13 December until Sunday 16 December, noon-4pm, and again the following Thursday-Sunday. Please pop in and check out the art, much of which is for sale (there’s a Christimas hint for you!).

Two of our writers got so inspired, they submitted two poems, but only one each could be used in the exhibition.

To mark the reopening of Backspace tomorrow, here is the poem from Rhonda Poholke that didn’t get used in Weathering the Future, responding to Ken Making’s “Unbearable…”. [click here to read, or hear, Rhonda’s other poem.] Enjoy:

A Helpless Animal Cries to the Earth

Because there is a crack running through
the chill white dawn, and the sky is melting
into the blood-thick horizon,
and I
feel every ache and weight pressing
against your heartbeat.
I’d mention the fish too – but there are
none to speak of anymore,
so I listen
for an echoing syllable of hope
and I cry
and starve and die for you.

On Sunday 16 December, the Art Gallery of Ballarat is having a gala launch of its summer program from 2pm till 5pm. It’s a perfect opportunity to pop into Backspace, too!