Madonna Staunton ‘Pennant’

Inspired by a current QAGOMA exhibition  Madonna Staunton : Out of a Clear Blue Sky, our guest blogger artist Normana Wight reviews Pennant an artists’ book from the collections of the Australian Library of Art.

A unique artist’s book

This is a book of some size and weight; in timber and paper, it is a sculptural ‘objet d’art.’
The shape suggests the pennant of the title. If it were in your own house, it would probably sit upright and open on your mantelpiece, so that you would experience its poetry and message as you walk past – from left to right(.?.)

As happens with some artists’ books, it arrives in a box, then opens out into a small scale complete exhibition. Just for you to view.


It strikes me as a good idea to include in this blog, the artists own description of the works’ evolution.
“Books often evolve as a response to found material chosen to  act as covers, sometimes sourced  from derelict furniture. This adds a sculptural element to the concept. In the instance of Pennant the inner folds mimic the profile of the boards, playing with the theme of reverie in repose. Pennant perhaps refers to a Dream Ship.”

Viewer/readers can not only experience this enigmatic and exciting book, at the State Library, but over the road at The Queensland Art Gallery there is a new exhibition of Madonna’s work in which she has returned to painting which, like all her work, is rich in poetry, mysticism,  and the world of the mind.

Madonna Staunton interview: The James C Sourris AM Collection