EDITORIAL – EDITION 4

by Lucas Ihlein

Lucas Ihlein is an artist and member of Big Fag Press and Kandos School of Cultural Adaptation.

Ward O’Neill, “CHRISTO AND JEANNE-CLAUDE WERE HERE! (PORTRAIT OF JOHN KALDOR)”, drawing, 2019.

The decline of newspapers has seen the decimation of entire areas of traditional journalism. Among the first to go as a cost cutting measure were the specialist press photographers. In our final edition of EXTRA!EXTRA! next week we’ll feature an interview with one of the greatest, Lorrie Graham.

After press photographers, next in line to be axed were illustrators and cartoonists, who are now reduced to a very small number. We are pleased to feature on the front cover of this issue “CHRISTO AND JEANNE-CLAUDE WERE HERE!” – a portrait of John Kaldor by Ward O’Neill. O’Neill is a three-time Walkley Award winner who has worked for The Australian, The Sydney Morning Herald, The National Times, The Bulletin, the Australian Financial Review, and now for EXTRA!EXTRA!. 

Our exploration of the labour relations surrounding live art continues this week. The centre spread hosts a playful dialogue “in three acts” between local artists Sarah Rodigari and Malcolm Whittaker, who have each at various times been employed by Kaldor to enact or inhabit the spaces created by international stars like Marina Abramović and Tino Seghal.

EXTRA!EXTRA! editor Ian Milliss provides further commentary on art and labour, arguing that the organisational logistics of collectives (like a union, like a group of rock climbers, like a fabric company) can prompt significant cultural adaptation, and thus be framed as “art”. 

And speaking of fabric as art, in her article Jenna Price recalls attending an early Kaldor Public Art Project with her mum, in the rag trade district of Sydney. Jenna’s discussion about diversity in the arts is also a reminder that Surry Hills, where John Kaldor Fabricmaker traded, was in its heyday a thriving centre of cultural diversity.

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