Interview :: Bake Sale @ Late Night Library

October 28th 2011

Dear Surry Hills Library,

Do you know what I used to do with my Thursday nights? Let me tell you. I used to go out with friends, drink cheap wine, eat food, hobnob with clever arty types… y’know, live. But ever since you threw open your doors and started up this ‘Late Night Library’ business, those days are gone.

No longer am I out on the streets, searching for the newest, tiniest, most inaccessible, overpriced, hidden bar Sydney has ever seen. Oh no! I am at the library. THE LIBRARY. All my years of cultivating an air of being well-read without having ever set foot in a library, wasted. Gone.

That’s right, now it’s all going out with friends, drinking wine, eating food, and hobnobbing with clever arty types in the library. And worst of all, it’s free. FREE! How are we supposed to retain our disaffection and urban kool when we all spend our nights learning, hmm?

And it just keeps getting worse. I hear next week you’re playing host to that clever collective Bake Sale, purveyors of the much-loved Monthly Friend events. Damn you Late Night Library, what chance do we stand!?

Just this week I was chatting to Bake Sale’s Megan Garrett-Jones, and things are looking dire indeed. I challenge you to try and stay away! Read on, lost souls! The library will not rest until it has taken us all!


Flog: So, Meg, tell us, how'd Bake Sale get tangled up with that overachieving Late Night Library crew anyway?

Meg: Co-director of Bake Sale Georgie Meagher, in her capacity as a co-director of firstdraft gallery (she is a woman of fingers in many pies Georgie), worked recently with the City of Sydney to organise and present We Are Here (WAH), an international symposium for Artist Run Initiatives. Georgie and Hugh Nichols, Cultural Development Officer at City of Sydney, AKA library crew, got talking. They needed people to run events and we reckoned we done some good ones in the past. Voila.

Culture is a pretty massive undertaking as a theme! How are you defining it in this case?

In a narrow kind of way, but we started even narrower. We were going to have a sound art intensive as we were working from a shakily formulated premise that if you get sound you get anything. With the addition of Susan Gibb's presentation it becomes about 'contemporary art' really, which the course probably ought to have been called. Indeed culture is pretty much everything: sport, music, TV, food. But it's the less mainstream stuff that gets a bad wrap as being obtuse and elitist, and that seems to apply to contemporary art practice as much as the traditional or classical art forms. It's one thing to say that Shakespeare is disconnected, but to say the same thing about an artist working in and responding to a contemporary context seems bizarre, and I think this is an issue for both artists and audiences. So, here we have two really engaged people sharing their personal connection with these art forms which I think is going to be really interesting and will provide an in road for anyone looking for one.

And where on earth did you dig up your excellent sounding experts?

We are always sizing up our peers for what they could possibly teach us and a room full of people. For our last course on LOVE we found


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