Mick the Gallery

The X Factor


As posted on this blog earlier, we have the great pleasure and privilege of having the very talented artist Clara Adolphs working in my old Potting Shed at our farm in Sutton Forest. Through a chance conversation earlier in the year, I discovered that Clara needed a studio space and as I had just opened my garden shop in town and was no longer working from home, my Potting Shed was available.  It’s quite a large space, with a workbench and windows looking out over gardens to the north and French doors opening to the garden on the east. After an inspection Clara declared it was perfect and moved in with her canvases and oils.  And off she went.  Painting, painting, painting.  Some months later she called to let me  know Vogue Living would be sending a journalist to do an interview and later a photographer would come to take photos of her at work.   The interview was scheduled before Clara went to New York for an important  invitational drawing course -and soon after she returned it was time for the photo shoot.  So that day I rose early, had breakfast then out to help Clara with preparations before the photographer arrived at 9am. Great excitement.  And some nerves.  It’s a big deal being featured in Vogue so it had to go well and we wanted the space to look perfect. Together we cleaned and tidied and swept and arranged the space and when Peter arrived I made coffee and left them to it.



The flurry of excitement to prepare for the shoot took me back to my PR days when as a concert and theatre publicist for many big touring shows I was, at quite a young age, responsible for minding lots of international stars and settling nerves before dozens of press conferences and interviews.  And in every case the common denominator was the same – whether it was Mick Jagger or David Bowie, Leonard Cohen or Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Tina Turner or Joe Cocker,  the Bolshoi Ballet’s Prima Ballerina or the remarkable skating duo Torvill and Dean… what was evident was what is known as the X Factor.  These were really big stars.  They got there because they had special talent, special drive, special personalities … they had lots of  ‘it’.  They took their work seriously and every single interview and photo shoot was treated with importance. These sorts of people really do shine …  and that, of course, is why they’re called ‘stars’.

And there in our garden shed, as I watched the talented and beautiful young Clara Adolphs preparing her canvases and arranging her studio, I knew I was in the presence of another star – another artist with loads of X Factor. Good luck Clara with the final week of your exhibition ‘The Man in Me’ at MiCK the Gallery in Woollahra.  Though you won’t need luck … I think you just have ‘it’!
MiCK Project Show
83 Moncur Street, WOOLLAHRA NSW 2025 (previously Eva Breuer Gallery)

Gallery Hours | Tuesday – Saturday 10-6, Sunday 1-5 | until 26 October 2014 only

Click here to watch a video of Clara at work in her studio.









Clara’s Studio

IMG_9897Since opening The Potting Shed a few weeks ago, I have had very little time for my garden at home and so my other potting shed which overlooks our kitchen garden is sitting empty and forlorn.  Through one of those “six degrees of separation” instances I had a call from a gorgeous young local artist, Clara Adolphs. She had heard from a friend that I had a studio to rent.  Actually no, I said, I was looking for a live-in gardener to manage my garden now that I was back full time at work …  but as luck would have it, my potting shed was now empty and had a lovely view and would she like to work from there in return for minding my dogs while I was at work. She came and loved the space and moved in with her easel and paints and set to work. Perfect.  The potting shed has a new use and has been renamed ‘Clara’s Studio’, the dogs are delighted and we have our own super talented ‘resident artist’.  We feel very grown up!   IMG_9898 IMG_9900

You can view more of Clara’s works at Mick the Gallery, 44 Gurner Street in Paddington, open Tuesday to Saturday 10-6pm. www.mickthegallery.com