Every year in south eastern NSW, regional councils sponsor an art competition where artworks have to be created mainly from materials recovered from the waste stream. The exhibition is currently showing in the Mechanics Institute in Moruya, a graceful brick building which is a pleasure to visit it in its own right, regardless of the exhibition inside.

My choice was Luiza Urbanik's “My body, my house”, a hinged triptych made from broken plates, mirrors, junk shop jewels, toys, plywood off cuts and acrylic paint. I liked its sparkle, humour, intricacy and dimensionality. Luiza, whom I met at Middle Earth, was sitting beneath her creation and she told me that it had been six months in the making, as the stories it tells unfolded.


Mechanics Institute, Moruya


Mechanics Institute, Moruya: detail


Luiza Urbanik and her artwork My body my house


Detail from My body, my house


Detail from My body, my house


Detail from My body, my house


Luiza Urbanik: detail from The Dance


Luiza Urbanki: detail from The dance


The competition winner was Toby Whitelaw. He created a bust called “#selfie” out of corrugated cardboard from discarded boxes and wire: it looks like a statue from an antique land.



Detail of #selfie


Other works were more conventional


Bernadette Davis: Lines to die for (marine debris plastic from Eurobodalla beaches)


Louise Rossi: A view of comfort (glass door, bras and ribbons)


Nat Curnow: The sedge has withered from the lake ... (Oregon posts from an old shed)


Mark Ward: Still life with cows (enamel, shell, wire and found metal)


Gabrielle Powell: Red white vase (recycled wire stitched)


Geri Taylor: Headland dreaming (old paintings Sliced. Woven. Revived


Jacqueline White: Winter bushwalk (hand spun wool, rope, yarn from Salvos)


Mirabel Fitzgerald: Ghost women of the shore (oyster shells, black periwinkle shells, scrap metal, driftwood, plywood)


Nick Hopkins: Max not happy with Monty taking over the kennel (polystyrene packaging, old dog kennel and cabinet doors, recycled metal)



For those of you who knew Christine, the winner, Toby Whitelaw, is her son.