Page 712 - Week 03 - Tuesday, 28 March 2006

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with images and themes that touched a broader cross-section of the population. There are many people whom you would not probably consider typical collectors of art who purchased his works and were pleased to display them in their homes. I have seen that over the years, as I am sure other members have.

Mr Hart’s work dealt with images and themes that touched a broader cross-section of the population. Many say that he did not care much for critics’ approval, instead preferring to touch on everyday images and themes that were more relevant to his roots.

Pro Hart was born in Broken Hill, grew up on the family sheep station, and in his early 20s worked underground as a miner. From age seven, he was always a keen sketcher and painter, but it was not until his early 20s that he, as a mainly self-taught artist, used painting as a creative outlet to keep him sane during his work in the mines. This creative outlet ultimately proved to be a way to free him from the mines and pursue his lifetime passion.

Another major factor behind Mr Hart’s popularity was the range of art that he produced, which always drew big crowds. His body of work was always positioned at a relatively attainable price point for collectors as well as enthusiasts, including pieces created with oils and acrylics. He was known to use any tool or method, however unorthodox, to achieve the desired outcome of his work. Mr Hart also sculpted welded steel, bronze and ceramics. As an example, his earlier work that profiled masks and flannels in memory of his time as a miner proved to hold popular appeal.

Pro Hart’s work has been exhibited all over the world. Amongst his achievements were an MBE that he was awarded for services to Australian art in 1976, an honorary life membership of the Society International Artistique for outstanding artistic achievement in 1982, and an Australian citizen of the year award in 1983.

Pro Hart is truly an icon of the contemporary Australian art landscape. I am sure that all in this Assembly and all Australians appreciate and value the contribution that Mr Hart has made to the arts in Australia. We send our best wishes to his family on this sad occasion in their lives.

Charny Carni

Navrang 2006

MS PORTER (Ginninderra) (5.04): I would like to use the time allowed me this evening to reflect on two of my engagements last Saturday. I refer to the Charny Carni and Navrang 2006, a fundraising concert for the Hindu Temple and Cultural Centre.

Firstly, the Charny Carni: the Charnwood carnival is in its third year of operation and is getting bigger and better as each year passes. The Charny Carni is a great example of people getting together with an idea and achieving great things. In its first year, it was supported by a small grant from the ACT government. Now it has gathered enough momentum to continue under its own steam. Last Saturday was a great success, including the mullet judging competition that I was fortunate enough to co-judge. Congratulations to the winner, young Jayden, all of two years of age. Organisers have today informed me that over 5,000 people attended.

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