Week 24/2023: Modern times and creole food

Week of 12 June 2023 (part 1)

A busy week(end)

This was such a busy weekend I’m splitting it over two posts.

Modern times

A friend told me about an exhibition at the Handmark Gallery they thought I’d be interested in, so I took some time on Friday to check it out.

This was Modern Times by Alex Wanders,  which is “an exploration in paint of some of Hobart’s mid-century modernist architectural landmarks”.

Paintings of a fountain and a hall with columns out front with the text "Alex Wanders—Modern times" beneath
Modern times by Alex Wanders

Of course I was interested!

There were paintings of a range of structures across Hobart, many of which I was familiar with and have photographed over the years.

Two paintings on a white textured gallery wall. One is of a moon and a cat with a fiddle, the other a sculptured bathing pavilion on the beachfront
Cat & Fiddle Arcade | Long Beach Bathing Paviilion

This includes the Railway Roundabout, Dirk Bolt’s Long Beach Bathing Pavilion and Esmond Dorney’s Jarvis House.

A painting in pastel colours of a long house with a scalloped roof, hangiing on a white textured gallery wall
Alex Wanders’ interpretation of Esmond Dorney’s Jarvis House

They were wonderful interpretations of these places, noting Alex’s statement that while the designs are still full of “breezy optimism, . . . times have changed and contemporary life seems perhaps a little more complex, uncertain and introspective than it did back then”.

The exhibition is described as “part nostalgia, part observation and part invention exploring how these special places still impact our lives”.

A row of paintings of modernist structures on a white textured gallery wall
Modern Times

The exhibition was accompanied by a video of Alex talking about his technique for making these works, which included visiting them to sketch and photograph them, then constructing models where he could experiment with the light, shadows and form, and ultimately base his paintings on. He deliberately compressed the structures rather than locate them in the environment that they’re in to create more intensity in the images.

You can see the video here.

Normally I’d be happy with one cool thing on a Friday afternoon, but there was more to come!

Driveway diner

The wonderful Toni (aka Honeychild) wasn’t able to take part in the Dark Mofo festivities this year, so it was very exciting that she set up her food truck as a “driveway diner” on Friday and Saturday night.

Friday night is our regular takeaway night and Honeychild’s menu was too tempting to refuse.

She had two main course and a dessert on offer, as well as a hot caramel apple cider. We couldn’t decide what to have so opted for the “sampler”, which she describes as “a taste of it all”.

All we had to do was turn up to the driveway and pick it up.

A woman standing behind a high counter holding a dish of food
Honeychild doing her thing

It was fabulous to catch up with Toni and chat about her recent appearances on The Cook Up with Adam Liaw (here’s her most latest appearance) as well as her recent visit to Kramstable’s school. Unfortunately, it wasn’t his class that she visited but maybe he’ll get an opportunity in a future class.

There was so much food! Unpacking the containers when we got home, my thought was I was never going to eat all this . . . Which was good because it meant leftovers for lunch.

We had to construct the pork chop sammich when we got home so it didn’t go soggy in transit. As expected, it was amazingly good. I’m not a food critic so I’m not going to go all Masterchef on you, but it was great.

10/10 would have this again many times.

Two slices of white bread topped with lettuce, chopped crispy pork, chopped gherkins and cooked apples, on a blue plate
Pork Chop sammich

Spicy crunchy pork (I decided to chop my chop up) with apple, gherkin on a bed of lettuce and mayo. I’m not sure if that was meant to go on top and if I got mine upside down but I don’t really care. It worked for me.

The sweet apple caramel (non-alcoholic) cider was the perfect accompaniment on a cold night. Caramel and apple is a flavour combination I don’t think I’d tried before but it works. And the ‘sinnerman’ rolls, fabulous dessert.

A foil container containing some baked goods
Sinnerman rolls for dessert

The chicken aloha bowl I left for lunch, and that was just as good.

A food box containing spicy fried chicken, sweet potatoes, cooked apples, jalapenos, and cucumber side salad
Chicken bowl

We got a little sample while we were waiting for Honeychild’s lovely helper to put everything together for us, and the sesame cucumber side salad was – oh my goodness, I need to find out how to make this! I’m not sure if it’s the same one Adam made on the show or if it’s Toni’s version of this (I should have asked) but it certainly made cucumber a way more appealing prospect than it normally is.

This was a wonderful lunch of spiced fried chicken with sweet potato, apple served on rice with the sides of jalapenos and cucumber.

Thank you, Toni, for a wonderful two-day feast! We’ll be back.

Week 24 summary

What was the best thing about this week?

These were two great things but there’s more to come!

What I’m reading this week

  • A Twentieth Century Life by Edith Emery
  • The Good Wife of Bath by Karen Brooks
  • Wintering by Katherine May

Habit tracker

  • Morning ritual: (Goal = 7): 6
  • Move (preferably before 3 pm) (Goal = 7): 6
  • Three times a week writing habit (3): 0
  • The Little Red Writing Book exercises (Goal = 5): 0
  • Listen to writing podcasts (Goal = 2): 0
  • Physiotherapy exercises (at least 4/5) (Goal = 7): 6
  • Shut my computer down before 9.15 (Goal = 5): 6
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