Thursday, July 11, 2013


If only all research could happen under an oak tree in Winter sunshine! The photos below were taken recently when I was reading about Dorothy Leviny whilst sitting under the oak tree at Buda.  Apparently the oak tree was allowed to 'have its head' once the tennis court was removed and the space remodelled into a formal garden space in 1918. This formal garden was designed by Dorothy whose work can be seen in many aspects of the house and garden at Buda.

Looking West from the Formal Garden

The Leviny family and the legacy they have left in Buda is remarkable.  I quote from Lauretta Ziles book ...

"Hilda Leviny, the last surviving child of Ernest and Bertha, intended that the property should remain intact as a memorial to her family's artistic and horticultural endeavours and, as stated in her Deed of Gift, to promote an 'interest in art for the general benefit of the public of the State of Victoria and in particular the City of Casltmaine' and the 'Art Gallery and Historical Museum.' "

I am hoping to do an Artist in Residence style project at Buda in 2014.  The research is well under way,  and much is dependant on gaining funding ... And in the mean time I have the pleasure of getting to know this special house and garden.

Buda sits comfortably in its space.  It isn't an imposing place, but rather a very approachable piece of history that allows visitors a sort of peek into the lives of the Leviny family.  There is nothing overtly grand about Buda, even though it has elements of grandeur.  That is, while Buda is obviously a grand home, it is not self consciously so.  There is something quite enigmatic and yet approachable about the specialness of the place - and that makes the idea of making imagery about the property seem quite approachable.

The reality is that all my imagery making involves doubt at some point. There will be uncertainty, but for now I am feeling excited by the prospect of delving into the minutia of the place... drawing.  Drawing with a pencil and also hopefully drawing out something new ...

I'm very much looking forward to spending time exploring further!!