On the Edge

On the Edge

A major Borderline Exhibition at the Stanthorpe Regional Art Gallery (SRAG)

Exhibition on NOW, closing 15 July 2017

SRAG Director Mary Findlay speaking at the opening of On the Edge.

SRAG Director Mary Findlay speaking at the opening of On the Edge, in front of Helen Turissi’s oil painting ‘Diversity’. The drawings are ‘Brush-Tailed Rock Wallaby’ and ‘Bilby’ by Judy Harris


In a public statement from SRAG:  “it is an exhibition that any gallery in the world would be delighted to have and we are proud to be able to show it to you.”

SRAG Administrator Denise Donnelly sentiment to members: “I think it looks beautiful and I wanted to convey this to the group, it really is outstanding, there’s such an amount of passion, effort and talent, thank you very much.”

On the Edge Opening Night

On the Edge Opening Night


The ‘On the Edge’ sub-committee members are Louise Jenkins, Helen Turrisi, Theo Gard and Maggie Brockie.


Here is the stimulus supplied to members, who were encouraged to twist and turn the topic with their own interpretations, and to have fun with their creative selves:

The idea came to us through “Margaret Oben Dowe, who carved the poem (albeit a  slightly different version) in clay and has it hanging on her wall.

Come to the edge.
We might fall.
Come to the edge.
It’s too high!
And they came,
and he pushed,
and they flew.

–          Christopher Logue

Edge is the word in this idiom to focus on.

The origin of the word edge:

It comes from the Old English ecg ‘sharpened side of a blade’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch egge and German Ecke, also to Old Norse eggja, from an Indo-European root shared by Latinacies ‘edge’ and Greek akis ‘point’.

Being on the edge for the creator of the art work can mean different things. For some it is the point just before something very different and noticeable happens, being in an uncertain situation.
A question many artists face is, when do I finish this work, do I finish it now or do I just do a little bit more? Am I feeling tense, nervous, or irritable? Or am I in a state of keen excitement, feeling on the edge, because its finally coming to an end?
Being on the edge for the viewer could mean excitement/anticipation they are about to gain from viewing a work. They may feel that the work provides for them an intense, sharp, or striking experience.

It may be about taking risks/pushing boundaries to come ever closer to your creative potential, and not just complacently relaxing in your comfort zone.  By ‘living on the edge’ in an artistic sense, you are opening yourself to be more creative, and would have heightened feeling and senses – in essence feeling more alive’.

In terms of interesting subject matter:  “living on the edge” can also mean living dangerously eg soldier/policeman/extreme sports/ and have further negative connotations eg drug abuser/life on the fringe of society.

Theo Gard… “its called falling waters… an analogy many of us face! Do we stop the water flowing or dare we go over the edge to see what the result is?”

section from 'As Familiarity Fades' - Louise Jenkins

section from ‘As Familiarity Fades’ – Louise Jenkins

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