Continuing our chats with our favourites artists at Modern Times. We uncover the connection Elizabeth Barnett has to a special painting in her collection and what she’s hoping to add to it!

What is your most treasured piece of art or design object?

I can’t decide on my one favourite piece of artwork or art object. We have a growing collection of paintings, prints and photography and I have a thing for ceramics by local makers.

So I’ll talk about one of the paintings that I love, a beautiful abstract painting by Nick Huggins of the factory warehouse next to Triple R radio station on Nicholson street which is actually where I had a studio many years ago.

Nick sketched up the painting from Milkwood cafe which is opposite. I can imagine it was a cloud grey melbourne day because the the painting captures so beautifully and in an abstract way the colour and feeling of that street and the bizarre stilted building. Nick is a friend of mine and my husband’s so his work is particularly special to us.

Lizzie with some of her paintings and a teapot by Katia Carletti

When and how did it come into your possession?

We bought this painting from an exhibition that Nick had at Schoolhouse Studio’s Long Division gallery, which was also special because I set up Schoolhouse with Alice Glenn back when it was located in the old school in Abbotsford.

What has this piece given you in terms of enrichment, enjoyment, and fulfilment?

I am inspired whenever I look at this piece because it reminds me of times gone by, Nick’s use of colour and abstraction is amazing and his work really looks like his music (he is a brilliant musician and music producer).

How does it make you feel when you admire it, and why does it stir this emotion?

I can hear Nick’s music in this painting.

What piece of art or design object from Modern Times are you wishing for this Christmas?

Oh goodness… so many beautiful things… I am always looking for the perfect couch at MT, one day I will walk in and there it will be. I would LOVE to buy one of Brooke Holm’s photographs one day or Laura Skerlj’s paintings. And then there is all the gorgeous ceramics (my favourites being Katia Carletti and Iggy and Lou Lou) and textiles by local makers like Hello Polly Home and Bonnie and Neil… the list could go on!!

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Details from Lizzie's studio

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