Wentworth, NSW – in situ

First ever blog from a phone – how very now.  I’ m currently in the NSW bordertown, Wentworth which is situated about 30km north of Mildura and practically sits on the confluence of the Murray and Darling river systems.  I’m here for the weekend on a reccy trip to suss out the historic Old Wentworth Gaol, where I’ll be installing a new work for the March 2013 Mildura/Wentworth Arts Festival. 

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After an exhausting solo drive from Adelaide yesterday morning (about 400 km) I’ve been based at Anne and Steve Hedriks Artback artist camp, Tara, which is just on the outskirts of Wentworth.  It’s a beautiful rustic property complete with artist facilities and sits in the Darling River and is home to an Olive Grove, pidgeons, a very loud rooster, friendly dogs, yellow breasted Rosellas and Apostle birds.

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So far the hospitality has been wonderful and I’ve had the opportunity to check out the lovely Artback cafe in the town centre, the river conflux and spend a bit of time in the spectacular Perry Sandhills (6km west of the town.)

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It’s awfully quiet in the sandhills except for the rustle of vegetation and the odd small plane flying overhead from the nearby airport.  I managed to try out an idea I’ve had for awhile, using one of my DIY hydrophones to capture the sound of shifting sands.  This sand is so fine – I’m going to have a hard time getting it out of some of my equipment!

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One of the great things about this region is the food – already I’ve been treated to a delicious breakfast prepped by Steve and Anne (asparagus, eggs, fresh bread, mulberry jam) and tried the Artback cafe’s brilliant chicken sausage rolls for lunch today.  Of course, there’s the wine and Mildura Brewery beer too!

Last night I was invited to the opening of the re-opened Mildura Arts Centre, which is a beautiful looking building with innovative design and I’m sure it will be a very popular venue for local artists and community. 

Today I’ve spent the morning recording around the general area (including the gaol) and now I’m resting up in preparation for Steve’s much talked about roast at Tara this evening.  Really good times up here…and such perfect weather!  I’m making the long journey back to Adelaide tomorrow morning.

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