Every dog has its day – even as a subject in an artwork.
This is what came to mind when we heard about an exhibition to be held at Gallery 139 at Hamilton, titled The Doggie Show.
Gallery 139 owner Ahn Wells decided to host an exhibition on dogs because “it’s my favourite kind of animal”.
Ahn has two dogs – Coco (a chihuahua and Jack Russell cross) and Odea (a miniature fox terrier).
“They are both very special to me. They keep me grounded and, if I’m feeling a bit yuck, they help to cheer me up with their antics and affection,” she said.
She brings Coco into the gallery most days, which often attracts people.
“She is friendly and people just want to say 'hello',” she said.
Ahn said that dogs break down boundaries and “help start conversations between strangers”.
“You just need to go to a dog park to see the positive effect they have on people, both physical and mental,” she said.
“Dogs seem to be content with their place in the world. They remind me not to worry about stupid things and to just enjoy now.”
Newcastle artist Peter Lankas has an artwork in the exhibition, titled “Tropics walk”.
The image shows himself on a shopping trip, walking his father’s chihuahua, which he described as “a very clever, loveable dog”.
“I’m really a cat person, so I see myself as an uncle to dogs,” he said.
“Dogs are a bit more like children. They require a lot of care and attention. Cats look after themselves.
“I guess dogs or pets, in general, are great company and allow us to interact on another level to human interaction.”
He said pets can be “great levellers”, adding that they brought playfulness, love and joy to a sometimes mundane existence.
“Dogs have been documented in the arts for centuries – they are a part of our existence,” he said.
“A show such as this gives artists a chance to explore another side of themselves.”
The gallery is dog-friendly.
The exhibition opens at the gallery on Saturday from 2pm to 4pm.
Ten per cent of sales will be donated to Hunter Animal Watch.
Kotara’s Tony Troughear told Topics a story about his toenails.
“There I was, sitting on the back step quietly cutting my toenails and enjoying watching them fly through the air and land in their final resting places,” Tony recounted.
“But wait! I thought a toenail landed just there a moment ago. Now it's gone!”
He cut another bit of nail.
“Out ducked an ant and dragged it off.
“From then on, it was a free-for-all. In 10 minutes, the toenails were all gone. Maybe a whole generation of tiny ants has been brought to adulthood on a diet of my toenails. Or, maybe the queen likes them as a special treat.”