ART FIX | Art entertainment for isolation


To dine: 
picnic perfection

1. A Brief History of Picnics by The Powerhouse Museum 


Pictured above: Le Déjeuner sur l’herbe, by Édouard Manet, 1863

It’s spring and the as days grow longer and warmer alfresco dining becomes increasingly appealing. To get you inspired, the Powerhouse Museum has put together a (very) brief history of the picnic, where you’ll find fascinating facts, vintage photographs and get to see how picnic paraphernalia has evolved throughout the ages.

Click here to read the full blog post. 


2. Three Easy and Elegant Picnic Basket Menus by Gwyneth Paltrow on Goop

A jack of all trades, Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop is a beacon of inspiration for food, entertainment, homewares and much more. Paltrow has taken the hard work out of planning what to cook and provided us with three easy and elegant picnic menus suitable for a day out. A balance of healthy snacks, indulgent treats and pairing suggestions, this is sure to elevate any picnic in the park.

Click here to see more. 


3. Support Your Local: cheeseboards, charcuterie, restaurants and more. 

If you don’t feel like cooking up a storm, now is a great time to get out there and support your local businesses. The options are endless, so Concrete Playground has kindly put together a list of take-away hampers for you to enjoy wherever you are. Decadent dining need not be hard work! 

If you’re missing the restaurant experience, Providoor allows you to order from some of Sydney’s top restaurants (The Apollo, Rockpool, Monopole and more) and delivers fresh food and drink for you to heat up and enjoy at home. They also operate in Melbourne – double the fun. 

Click here to read the Concrete Playground list or click here to visit the Providoor website and let us know if you have any local favourites. 


4. 300 years of picnics in art by Tove Danovitch

Pictured above: Francisco de Goya, Picnic En La Ribera Del Manzanares, 1776

“As the weather warms up, you might find yourself staring out an office window, daydreaming about what you’d rather be doing: lazing outdoors, perhaps, on a large blanket with a picnic bounty spread before you. 

In fact, people have been fantasising about picnics as a return to a simpler life pretty much since the dawn of urban living, says Walter Levy, author of The Picnic: A History.

And nowhere is this escape reverie more visible than in the history of art.”

Click here to read the full article.



To admire:
1. Floral Messages by Dutch tulip farmers 


With few visitors around to enjoy Holland’s famous blooms, Dutch tulip farmers have been getting creative with their flower beds: they’re using them as a way to share uplifting messages with the world.

The above image was shared to their Facebook page with a message that read: “We headed the tulips a bit earlier to write this message, from our families to yours… we hope that this brightens your day… and we hope to see you next year!” .

In another tulip field in Noordoostpolder, farmers Joris Schouten and Frank Timmerman have dedicated a message to frontline health care workers (see below).

Click here to read the full article.



2. Tour Paul Bangays’ Legendary Garden, the Design Files


Join Paul Bangay at his resplendent private garden, Stonefields, in Daylesford with this Design Files interview filmed last year. Paul created this grand country garden from scratch, and it has been a labour of love for just over 16 years. The iconic landscape designer’s tastes and interests have changed in the last decade and a half, and all of this is mirrored in the ever-changing landscape at Stonefields. Take a look for yourself and see how the more formal, structured zones give way to patches of cultivated wilderness, softened by an abundance of flowers.

You can practically smell the roses!

Click here to watch. 



3. Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards, the 2021 Finalists 


Have a giggle with the Comedy Wildlife Photography Award and enjoy these uplifting images from the 2021 finalists. With conservation through competition at their core, Comedy Wildlife raises awareness and evokes empathy for all creatures great and small in a positive and often hilarious manner. You can also browse past submissions (the project started in 2015) and perhaps find inspiration to take your own fabulous photos of local wildlife this spring.

Please click here to view the gallery.



For kids:
1. Youtube tutorials galore: a few favourites


DrawkidsDraw For those who can’t stop scribbling, the DrawKidsDraw channel is chock-full of wonderful pen and paper based projects. From sailboats to cartoon characters, there’s something for children of all ages. 


ArtForKidsHub With a dedicated ‘How to Draw Spring Stuff’ playlist that includes painting blossoms and folding origami flowers, children will find lots of seasonal content to keep entertained. 


The Artful Parent Bringing a bit of science to play, The Artful Parent features a ‘Kids Science Playlist’ that has some very simple yet engaging boredom busters; think candy art, easy printmaking and fizzing colours. Parents and supervisors will definitely find this whacky list of fun arty ideas rather entertaining…



2. NSW Rocks spreading joy through simple creations 


NSW Rocks is a state wide art initiative that brings communities throughout NSW together through Rock Painting – Hide n Seek.

It is run through a simple facebook page and encourages families and little ones to paint their own rocks for others to find, and to keep an eye out for other peoples creations.

Go hunting for painted rocks in your local park, or paint some and hide them for others to find and help to spread some joy in your community, wherever you may be. We’ve spotted a few around, so let us know if any of your little ones do too!   

Click here to visit the facebook page. 



3. Put some pep in your step with The Only Way is Up by Yazz


The soundtrack to spring and to any artistic endeavour this season, we wanted to share one of our favourite uplifting songs to party to while you play.  After all, THE ONLY WAY IS UP!