the many shapes of normal

Today i went to visit Hobart’s new MONA gallery.  MONA is the private gallery of Tasmanian David Walsh.  It’s only opened recently in a new purpose built venue at Walsh’s Moorilla vineyard/winery/entertainment precinct.

I went to visit with Cheryl (who reflects on her visits here and here), to encounter the gallery, and it’s opening exhibition “Monanism” (I think it’s basically a collection of Walsh’s favourite pieces).

Visiting MONA is an expedition into the unexpected.  Almost from the moment you turn off a suburban street and suddenly find yourself in the midst of a riverside vineyard, everything is abnormal, and (in my limited experience) its distinctly un-gallery like.

The building itself is stunning.  Carved from the ground, the gallery covers four main levels and is industrial in nature – steel, bare timbers, brushed concrete, and the sandstone that lies under the ground.  It’s all angles, and rust and grunge. And it’s astonishing. (click through to read on…..) Continue reading

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workshop description: re-imagining worship in a traditional space

The Uniting Church in Tasmania is blessed with many fine old church buildings.  They’re traditionally shaped, and often furnished accordingly. Long fixed pews, pipe organs, even old-school box pews are common. Heritage listing prohibits re-shaping many of the buildings to a form more appropriate for a modern faith community.

Those buildings are both a blessing, and a profound challenge to the church – in ways that we’ll continue to explore.

Last week we had the opportunity to run the latest in our regular “Hobart 2020 Forums” for those interested in exploring the themes of “How then shall we live?”, the interim report of the Uniting Alive: Hobart 2020 process.

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workshop description: create-a-cafe

Last week we ran the first of a series of “Hobart 2020 Cafe Forum” gatherings.  Designed to provide opportunity for people to explore the themes of the report “How then shall we live?” for the Uniting Church in Hobart, we tried to take a creative approach to this gathering.

The key themes of the report that formed the basis for this gathering are collaboration, creativity, innovation, imagination and community.

This post records the shape of the event, some of the thinking behind it, and a simple recording of what happened. If it’s an idea that has use for you, please feel free to run your own create-a-cafe gathering….either along similar lines to what happened in Hobart, or better still, shaped to fit your own context.

Hit the link to read all the details:

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