Denise M Taylor

Writing Consultant I Editor I Proofreader I Teacher

Life is precarious — even more so since COVID-19 infiltrated our lives a year ago and we’ve had to learn to live with daily uncertainties. But compared with other countries, Australia is perhaps ‘luckier’ than most (I think of Donald Horne’s 1964 book ‘The Lucky Country’). So, although I do feel ‘lucky’, I am a Melburnian who is suffering withdrawal […]

As the working year like no other winds down, there is no better time to find some personal space to reflect and re-energise. I suggested to an author, whom I’ve been mentoring for more than a year, to book a free timed-entry ticket to our local art gallery to help her unwind, refresh, or maybe even invigorate her ideas. The […]

The handmade book and the manual craft of printing are brought into sharp focus in an Arts and Crafts house situated along a short stretch of the Thames River in Hammersmith, just a half-hour train journey from central London. I visited 7 Hammersmith Terrace on a sunny spring day on the 17th of May this year. Between 1903 and 1933, […]

Categories: Musings on Art

Private art galleries are not only imbued with the presiding spirit of the collectors, which is consolidated in the choice of art works on display, but also by the nature of the gallery’s building and its site. Whether the building is a new build or a domestic residence converted into a museum to exhibit the owner’s art collection, there is […]

Categories: Musings on Art

If the name Vanessa Bell (1879-1961) doesn’t ring a bell, then maybe her younger sister’s name, Virginia Woolf, does. Happily, my recent stay in London coincided with an exhibition of Vanessa’s art at the Dulwich Picture Gallery, and I also visited Charleston House, her charming rural bolthole in East Sussex. Combining these visits enabled me to better understand this artist […]

Categories: Musings on Art

If you think the French artist, Edgar Degas (1834-1917), just painted pretty ballerinas in soft pastels, then you’ll know otherwise once you’ve visited the National Gallery of Victoria exhibition featuring works spanning more than five decades of his career. You’ll find out that this enigmatic man depicted modern Parisian life—warts and all—in many intriguing ways. Some pigeon-hole Degas as an […]

Categories: Musings on Art

The famous literary Brontë family lived in Haworth Parsonage, Yorkshire, between 1820 and 1861. Their austere grey-stone home, surrounded by dark-green trees, prickly hedges and bleak moors, is infused with gothic imaginations. Even though it is now the Brontë Parsonage Museum, and nothing can be touched, this is a place where astonishing art was created by three sisters. I imagine […]

French sculptor, Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), brought sculpture out of the doldrums and gave it a surface energy never seen before. For Rodin, it is the surface that expresses the results of internal and external forces. I appreciated this when I visited the Musée Rodin in Paris and saw the freshness of terracotta and plaster casts formed and moulded by Rodin’s […]

Categories: Musings on Art

For those who follow the teachings of Zen, one must not merely look, but see—and hear. I’m not the meditating type, but the extreme spareness of Ryōan-ji, the dry-landscape Japanese garden in Kyoto, with its solid wall and graceful overhanging branches of cherry blossom—an extraordinary place of art—encouraged me to silently contemplate the meaning of its stillness. This is not […]

Categories: Musings on Art

Spitalfields in East London sounds like a place out of a Dickens novel; images come to mind of the Artful Dodger racing over the cobblestones and seedy characters lurking in dark and foggy alleyways, spitting as they size each other up. However, any macabre desire to encounter ghosts from Victorian times was abated by the bright sunny day in July […]

Categories: Slideshow Articles