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Artist brings local cultural icons to life!

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BRISBANE artist Jane Long has taken some liberties with some archival photos of local Ballarat icons “The Flight from Pompeii” and the surrounding Botanical Gardens. In Long’s interpretation the young family in the statue are seen fleeing the gardens with Lake Wendouree in the background.

Asked what inspired the image, Long responds “It was just a bit of fun really. I was looking for images to create a promo piece for my exhibition when I came across these old images in the Victorian State Library Archives. I thought wouldn’t it be wonderful to bring them to life!”. The image displays Long’s signature style of recolouring old images. She uses photographs from Romanian photographer Costica Ascinte as the foundation of her series “Dancing with Costica”. The series has received much acclaim internationally but has been particularly popular in Romania where photographer Cezar Popescu has been painstakingly restoring and digitising over 6000 glass plates and prints taken by Costica Ascinte during his long career.

Ascinte was a Romanian war photographer active in World War I who later established a photography studio in Slobozia where he worked until he retired in 1960. He died in January 1984 and his collection was acquired by the Ialomi?a County History Museum in 1985. “It all started as a bit of an accident,” says Long. “I stumbled across the archive on Flickr when I was looking to do a bit of restoration practice and just fell in love with the images.”

The exhibition will open at the Art Gallery of Ballarat at 10 am on Saturday 22nd of August

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