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Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay Last Updated: Nov 18, 2018 - 10:26:59 AM
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Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
It takes a Village... - Jun 6, 2007 - 10:18:24 AM
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Sitting in a small stuffy darkened room with my fellow classmates, spots erupting on our chins and that thick smell of youth, we gaze aimlessly at the images projected on the screen. Our teacher, an erudite man with maybe a little too much enthusiasm for long boozy lunches rather than inspiring our dull minds, explains the erotic connection between food and art (particularly paintings with food and naked women!)  Not even this salacious detail seems to awaken us from our teenage hormone-induced stupor...
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Ecstatic Shadows - Apr 25, 2007 - 10:06:29 AM
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It’s late at night and a friend and I are chatting outside the Sand Bar, as we walk to my car parked further down the road, I stop and point out the beauty of the night.   The street lights are glowing hypnotically through the trees and the yellow light has pooled onto the street.   The black night is cut through with telegraph wires that range from taut and high strung, to sagging wearily, almost touching the road...
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
The Perfection of Imperfection - Mar 31, 2007 - 5:53:30 PM
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In art, there are no mistakes".  So says the pretty student I am listening to as we work on a piece of 'commissioned' graffiti on the school forecourt, as she observed her friend's line skew to the left. My son's fabulous teacher, Miss Waterhouse has had the idea of this after school club. The kids have designed on paper and now are using large paint brushes and spray paint cans to make their vibrant designs on the concrete ground.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Art Therapy - Feb 23, 2007 - 4:59:52 PM
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Art being my passion, there are days whilst standing on my proverbial soap box and ranting about the importance of art - how painting, drawing, creating, art therapy, therapeutic art, conceptual art, contemporary art, community art, public art etc etc, add to the wealth of the individual and the growth of communities - I become aware my audience, of maybe one, has a look on their face that flits between boredom, incomprehension and awe!
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
A Bahamian/Scottish Hero- Ian Hamilton Finlay - Jan 24, 2007 - 12:13:18 PM
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The Scottish Parliament building is an enigma. The architect, the late Enric Moralles was Spanish and designed an intriguing building to be the flagship of new Scottish politics. ( I will not- I promise- go into the politics)  In Edinburgh, near Holyrood Palace, (the Queen's Edinburgh residence), the Parliament building has created a stir.   People either love it or hate it.   It is hard to be ambiguous about such a building.   The exterior has, what looks like large gun motifs and an alarming amount of metal bars, organically bent and apparently randomly placed over the windows.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
A Discerning Eye for Art - Jan 8, 2007 - 11:55:48 AM
Art may be everywhere to my eyes, in trash, architecture and even in sound, however it was wonderful to attend the Freeport Art Centre’s 3rd Annual Show just before Christmas. The space above Papa Johns is airy and perfect for holding such an extensive exhibition.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
START Reading - Dec 11, 2006 - 3:34:40 PM
I feel deliciously gorged on art this weekend. Festival Noel was a feast of art and craft, ranging from the sublime technical brilliance of the Minnis family to incredible innovative craftwork of rag wreaths to sand bead necklaces. The diversity and quality of the work was stunning.     It was marvelous to witness such a selection of talent on this island.     I am only sad that this event is only held once a year.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Process - Nov 25, 2006 - 6:33:15 PM
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While at Art College, to pass our degree, it was necessary to complete a lengthy dissertation.   We seemed to spend all of our third year in terrified discussions as to how on earth we could actually complete such a monster in our fourth and final year.   A large percentage of our overall mark was accredited to our dissertation so we were rightly frightened. It took me a long time to settle on a topic that deeply interested me.   I don’t remember the title now, but it was suitably impressive!!! It was while writing my dissertation that I discovered the work of artist Richard Long.  
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Public Art - Nov 17, 2006 - 4:04:07 PM

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It is so windy today. Slightly overcast and deliciously cool. The wind keeps creeping around my house then bursts in through the windows. I have an alarming sensation of being at sea...

Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
The Weight of Space - Nov 2, 2006 - 4:03:55 PM
I am emailing a friend - writing to communicate some part of myself. I believe I am fully expressing all that I want to say even beyond the actual sentences that I use. It is important to me, the meaning hidden behind the words that I have written. The ones trailing in and out - actual memories and conversations we have had that I may make oblique reference to in my sentences - creating a space that resonates with a depth of mutual understanding.

Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Junk Art - Oct 19, 2006 - 4:01:09 PM
I walked home after taking the children to school this morning. It was one of those glorious mornings where everything felt born anew. The sky was alight and infinite blue and birds were calling insistently. I felt pockets of cool air not yet embraced by the sun.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
What is Art? - Sep 27, 2006 - 3:59:29 PM
The NE3 Exhibit opened at the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas in Nassau on the 6th July. It was stunning in its singular vision of Bahamian art as contemporary and conceptual. The exhibition was introduced by works by abstract expressionist artist, Kendall Hannah. Hannah has been painting in this genre for many years and though this style is unusual in the Bahamas, as the curator Krista Thompson points out, Abstract Expressionism first hit the international art scene in the 1960’s.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Sound Art - Listen Up! - Sep 15, 2006 - 3:56:24 PM
I was putting the trash out today and I was struck in an instant by the blueness of the sky and the insistent noise of the cicadas. Being from Scotland, neither phenomenon is a common occurrence. My first experience of intense heat and cicadas was on a summer holiday in Greece. Now when I hear that noise and feel that heat, I am transported - floating on a glacial turquoise Aegean Sea, overwhelmed by the intensity of the azure hot sky and the shimmering green of olive groves, ears filled with the wild buzzing of the cicadas.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Innate Creativity - Aug 30, 2006 - 3:51:18 PM
My children are coming home this week and I feel like a child anticipating a birthday, awaiting their return. It’s been a long time wearing the badge of ‘mother’ yet not being in active service during their time away. I talk to them through the computer or phone, disjointed, yet sweet enough conversations. I remember their faces, listening to them talk and giggle, their personalities, energy and their enthusiasm.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Symbols - Aug 23, 2006 - 11:09:00 AM
The pilot has a crisp white shirt with epaulettes. His blue slacks are pristine. He carries an air of confidence and capability. Squeezed into a six-seater plane, I have the privilege of sitting in the co-pilot seat and as I study the switches lights and gauges, it suddenly occurs to me how much trust we place in a pilot. In my important seat I am painfully aware that I do NOT know what the myriad of switches are for. It seems like a small miracle when we take off and another when we land. All through the flight the pilot performs his duties with the same calm authority.
Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Connections - Aug 19, 2006 - 11:02:35 AM
My children are leaving for the summer. They are going to spend eight weeks with their father up in Canada. The three of us are dealing with their impending departure in different ways. My son, who is five, expects to see Daddy, “Tomorrow”. My daughter, who is older and has a more solid concept of time and distance, will infrequently hug me and say she doesn’t want to leave me. And I? I cry when they are not looking.

Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Life is Juicy - Aug 16, 2006 - 11:06:40 AM
It’s raining today. Big hot splattering drops of water that soaked me the moment I run from the car to the house. It reminds me that life is juicy. Last week I wrote about the gallery space as an environment that transforms objects to personal and cultural relevance and as a place of analysis and reflection.

Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
The Holiday is Over - Aug 8, 2006 - 11:04:18 AM
I have been travelling extensively over the last month. New York was my first stop.

It is always a treat to experience the visual shock of sky scrapers after the horizontally soothing landscape of beaches and oceans. I am reminded of the excitement I have always felt travelling through an unknown city using the underground- I submerge in the midst of a muscular city centre only to reappear in some quirky, eccentric neighbourhood- the sudden and abrupt contrast exciting my senses.

Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
Environmental Art - Aug 8, 2006 - 10:59:24 AM
Art has expanded and exploded out of its traditional confines. Performance Art, Land Art, Conceptual art, Environmental Art and Public Art have all pushed, not only the way we understand art, but where it is displayed. It seems only correct that ART (a discipline whose very reputation is to push boundaries) continues to do that - literally!

Columns : Art Life - Susan Mackay
The Vital Gallery - Aug 4, 2006 - 10:55:46 AM
Yesterday I took two pieces of artwork on the plane to Nassau to The National Art Gallery of The Bahamas. It's an exciting event- an open call to all professional artists living in the Bahamas (and Bahamians living abroad) who may submit up to three pieces of art- in a range of categories from installations, assemblages, painting, and new media. All the art work will be judged by a panel and selections made for the exhibition held in July, just in time for Bahamas independence day celebrations.
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