Sharp-Ville From The Outsider
The Museum of Sydney hosts a slight retrospective of the works of one of Sydney’s favourite sons – the artist Martin Sharp. At the opening, I was reminded of an event in London 30 years ago when Bob Dylan played at Earl’s Court a decade or so after he had changed the times. And it was strange then how the blue-denimed flower children crawled out of the woodwork to honour their hero who then snubbed them all by coming on stage wearing white trousers and a brown leather jacket.
Similarly hundreds of freeze-dried fans of Luna Park, Oz and The Yellow House turned up to pay homage. And this they did in style for a hero who came among us like John the Baptist with a message rather than the urban spaceman from the ‘sixties.
The exhibition room, with its high ceilings and very narrow floor area, makes hanging the work an impossible challenge but you come away with a strong sense of Sharp’s vision. The ethos of Wolfe’s The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby comes to life in a celebration of pop art which both reflected and changed the world we lived in – whether in Sydney or London, New York or Berlin.