CAPO’s annual auction and cocktails event at the Canberra Museum and Gallery had a hint of Venice this year with glamorous and gaudy, artistic and elegant masks that for some were the perfect disguise but for most an occasional part of their pretence. They are fun for a short time as glitter and feathers get in the way of eating, drinking and kissing. And we do a lot of all of those at this annual event that brings together the business community and artists to exhibit, and garner support, each for the other.
In its various iterations the event has changed over the year to keep it fresh, fun and the best opportunity to bring new and emerging artists to a market that loves to be at the cutting edge of art, are egalitarian in their preferences and continues awarding and rewarding those who toil hard for recognition.
Those who regularly support CAPO, many for every event over the 33 year since its inception as a glamorous ball with all the trimmings and high profile MC’s, are a generous bunch and among my favourite Canberra ‘tribes’. Among them Di Fogwell wearing her magpie mask and catching up with Paul McDermott the patron and MC, while bidders who love/hate those same magpies competed in the silent auction for her linocut called ’Offering ‘ for three of her local maggies. My own local maggies are skating on thin ice with this year the first of four swoops had me wondering if creating a sling-shot might deter them, especially as my grandfather told me years ago if you feed them they will not swoop you. Not true!
Two small Robert Boynes paintings ‘Parliament’ 1 and 2 caught my eye, as always, his work described as contemporary social interaction is among the most covetable as is Sarit Cohen’s exquisite porcelain creations. An artistic couple of extraordinary talent.
My surprise this year was Janet Jeffs’ steel sculpture ‘Calyx’. Director and Executive Chef of Ginger Catering where I know her mastery of the culinary crafts, she’s found time somehow to get away from the pans and get on the tools to muck about with metal and show that degree in Fine Arts at Stanley Street in Adelaide 40 years ago will not be wasted. She has found time and pleasure to pursue this craft.
And then there were the masks. Incognito for Sean Davey in his facsimile of the Mudmen of Asaro with his black and white pictures taken in PNG plastered on his head hiding effort, the glorious gold and black feathers bought in Venice, the black lace Sarit Cohen whipped up and Julie West’s fabulous gold creation among the most outstanding. And you couldn’t miss the Dora the Explorer contingent as long as they kept the masks on and stayed together!
Congratulations to the formidable team who work tirelessly to make this happen.