Long haul flights and the big opening

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I keep forgetting how long it takes to get from Barcelona to Sydney. 7 hours + 14 hours = too much movie watching. Especially when you don't sleep.

Note to self for next time - DO NOT order any special meals, especially gluten free. I am with Air Qatar this time (who are great to fly with) but it seems that two thirds of my meal is grain based - muffins, breads, and cakes made from maize or rice flour instead wheat. What is this about? There are plenty of naturally gluten free foods without having to try to mimic them with various substitutes. 

I am still waiting to discover the magic formula to be fed something resembling healthy airplane food - like salad and fruit.

To accompany my special 'gluten free' meal the flight attendant offers me a (gluten-filled) croissant. I say yes for amusement, and because I know my partner will wolf it down simply out of boredom.

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We arrive in grey Sydney on is the coldest day of the year (so far) and of course I have packed for summer. Luckily the sun does appear in a lukewarm state in following days. The week there is a whirlwind - firstly re-stretching my canvases (which were rolled for transport) at the workshop of the National Art School (a big thanks to curator Chelsea Lehmann for facilitating this). 

The opening night is big and exuberant. I am thrilled to have old friends arrive, even coming from interstate especially for the event. There is a little artists' talk just before the official opening where we each speak for a few minutes. And then the party begins.

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And a few days later the exhibition receives some lovely press in the The Sydney Morning Herald.

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And now, back in France, I am mentally processing events. And ready to get back into the studio to continue with the next works in this new series.

I actually resisted making these two paintings for a long time because I was scared that 'no one' would 'get' them. Whenever I had posted my shop windows photos to my Instagram feed they received the fewest 'likes'. It was though I was in my own little bubble world that no one else understood. But I decided to do make them anyway because they made sense to me. As a result I was shocked by the enthusiastic response they received when they were shown.

I am now thinking bigger - a lot bigger - at least for the next two  works. But more on that later.