Sunday, November 06, 2016

The New Breed

Last fortnight I caught up with Cameron Menzies, Managing Director of Australian auction house Menzies Art Brands. We've known each other for around seven years now. For the first few years we emailed about copyright – the auction house contacts me for copyright permission before they reproduce my work online and in their printed catalogues. Back then most of my conversations were with the managing directors at the time, Chris Cullity and before him John Keats (now Senior Executive Officer at Sotheby's Australia). As Cameron progressed within the company he and I spoke more often. In 2013 I invited him to visit my enamel studio while he was in town.

This time we sat across the table from each other at a cafe, sipping coffee and talking candidly about art and the artworld. Among other things, we discussed the end of the enamel period of my oeuvre; new paintings I'm developing (watercolour studies and large works in oil on canvas or linen); oil paint as it ages; how are my enamels aging (very well – as long as they're hung properly and handled with care); how prints effect the market for an artist's major works; whether giclĂ©e reproductions have any value as an investment (we agree that they don't); art fraud; corruption within the artworld; the difference between generations; social media; privacy and the value of accomplishments that are unrelated to money. It was relaxed and unguarded. We know each other well enough now to speak frankly and in confidence.

Above: With Cameron Menzies at my enamel studio in 2013.

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