Il Bacaro

June 13, 2022 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | FOOD, Restaurants, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS, TRAVEL |

(168-170 Little Collins Street, Melbourne, 20 May 2022) A Homage to Bacchus This lively, lovely little joint Has been going strong since ’95, It’s tiny, dark and crowded space Is always filled, and comes alive. So you should always be prepared To book, and get there right on time; You may cool heels at the well-stocked bar, But the drinks there are sublime. And after a grand snort or two, You’re deftly guided to your seat: An expert waiter, with no airs, Will help you work out what to eat. *************************************** THIS TIME AROUND WE HAD: Ostriche al naturale (6…

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Queensland Art Gallery: The Good

December 4, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, TRAVEL |

November 2021 After a few nasty snickers concerning the quaint homage to the Louvre (below), we entered the Gallery after finally mastering the Queensland QR codes.  It’s full of good stuff. We have traversed the pitiful pieces: but  thankfully there was plenty of fine art to be found here.  Apart from the sublime Dürer woodcuts, and Artur Loureiro’s Study for “The spirit of the new moon” (1888)(see main image) inspired by the Luciads by Camoens, there were: A Madonna and child encircled by flowers and fruit (c. 1615), attributed to Andries Danielsz: “Wisdom supporting Liberty” by Jules Dalou (1889): No…

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Queensland Museum

November 29, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, LIFE, TRAVEL |

November 2021 TVC loves V & A style museums, the ones that pile-up objects, so that stuffed animals lie cheek by jowl with ancient graves, next to planes, trains and automobiles, and so on. (For example, Edinburgh). Housed in a repulsive building after the New Brutalism style of architecture (main image), near to the Queensland Art Gallery’s quaint homage to the Louvre pyramid, the Queensland Museum was opened by then Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen (it’s a wonder the current Premier’s myrmidons haven’t covered-up the plaque).  It was a welcome respite from the heat after a brief stop at the Gallery of Modern…

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Gallery of Modern Art

November 26, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, TRAVEL |

Brisbane, November 2021 TVC ploughed through the liquid heat, on Southbank along Gray Street, only to be told that most of the Gallery of Modern Art (that we’d been dreading anyway) was closed for some weeks to prepare a new exhibition based on the effects on art of colonization of Japan and Malaysia (we were tempted to ask the guard if any good effects might be featured – a depiction, say, of Madame Butterfly, or pieces of Chinese porcelain) but we let it drop. We liked Karam Shrestha’s “unhearing” (2020), (above), reminiscent of a Da Vinci sketch. There were some…

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Stuffing One’s Face in Brisbane

November 25, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, FOOD, LIFE, Restaurants, TRAVEL |

November 2021 The Varnished Culture spent a (very) warm week in Brisbane sampling, inter alia, some of the very nice eateries. From restaurant to cafe, Brisbane serves good food in elegant settings and a relaxed mode. Here’s a sample. Otto (Shop 1, River Quay, Sidon St, Brisbane, Qld) Very posh. A short walk through the steamy riverbank gardens and then seats in the bar with delicious cocktails (a “Sicilian Sunset” – Vodka, Limoncello, Lemon sorbet, Vanilla and soda; and an “Arancia Sour” – Johnnie Walker Black, Lemon, a Chinotto reduction and whites).  Then in to lunch. There we encountered some…

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