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Travels With My Art
Michael Rubbo (Author) RRP A$34.95 H/B
Publisher: Michael Rubbo
(Click to see all books by this publisher)
Pub Date: 20171001
BIC: BGF ISBN: 9780994503640
Category: Biography: arts & entertainment Availability: 100+
I've spent my life as a filmmaker. But through my 40 years making both documentaries and features, I've had to get out of the dark, out of the cutting room and be in nature.
My family has a history of doing this via painting. Both my grandfather, Antonio Dattilo Rubbo, and my mother, Ellen Rubbo, painted plein air. So It was natural that my way of getting outside, has been to set up an easel, let the wind buffet my canvas, let the bugs land in the sticky oils, and people stop to be curious and comment. Be an impressionist.
This book is about the results of all that painting in Canada, in Finland, and in Australia. In some cases, it's been so intense that as well as making the movies, I've become the village painter, the teller of the local story. I argue in the book that, taking ownership of a scene by painting it, is a wonderful way to soak up the restless energy we all have, energy which can see us carving up the countryside before we know it . I tell that by painting, you leave your mark but make no mark, and that's a very good strategy. It's also a story to cherish and art I think, is 50% story.
Because selling was never the object, I have virtually all the oils I've ever done. Those I don't have I've recently repainted for the book . That being so, it's been quite easy to put them all together into this book to record a lifetime of art on the side.
I have also more recently started art which is activist. I've been using my art to draw attention to beautiful places and buildings which are under threat from development. I've done this in our village of Avoca Beach, north of Sydney, opposing the redevelopment of the charming single screen, Avoca Theatre.
Most recently, I've also become through drawing, linocuts and solar prints, a passionate advocate for the sort of stately cycling that they do in Europe. That way of riding a bike, sitting up straight not head down and hell-bent, not helmeted and blazoned and vis gear, practising a lovely way to ride that we've mostly missed out on in Australia. Travels with my art thus ends with my bicycle art and the general thought, what does this all add up to? What value does it have?
As a painter I'm an impressionist. The original Impressionists had to fight the Paris art establishment and a bitter fight it was, both depressing and energising. Energising because they knew they were seeing the world in a way that was new and important. But now, there's nothing new about being an impressionist, so nobody has much cared about what I've done except family and fellow villagers, and so I've enjoyed a sort of lonely happiness, rounded by this book .
Mike Rubbo, August 2017
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