The Gift

A ripper of a visual sociology for June-July, 2017, begins with an interview about racism in dating, followed by a jubilant NAIDOC week community event in Redfern. We indulge in a plethora of thrilling art. We travel through Inner Western Sydney. We come upon environmentally friendly revenge by a spurned lover. And the sociology of trolleys gives us three surprising appearances.

Conscious dating

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This was my day:  filming on race and dating with Santilla Chingaipe and Kaila Perusco for Conscious Dating Co. Thoughtful discussion of sexual racism, meaningful relationships, how to address structural and unconscious bias in Australia, and much more. Intelligent, funny and generous women plus an awesome crew, with beautiful food and hosts. Parliament on King is a luscious cafe and it makes for a beautiful set! Book lovers’ heaven. (8 June) Continue reading The Gift

Love Is… Australian Wedding Fashion 

I’m at the “Love Is… Australian Wedding Fashion” exhibition at the  Powerhouse Museum.

This was a very interesting exhibition but it’s not really about “Australia.” It’s about White Australia. It starts with a room about “early history” – which begins with “convicts.” Already Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are erased, but to add injury, the room uses an unnamed Indigenous song that plays in the background to a room full of White colonisers. There is only one Aboriginal designer in the entire exhibition – Dharruk and Darkenjung woman Robyn Caughlan (in this video) – but no couples. Continue reading Love Is… Australian Wedding Fashion 

Passion and Procession. The Art of the Philippines

The works on display are by contemporary artists, some of whom also work in Australia. The artists explore the interlocking influences of religiosity and social activism on modern politics and colonial forces. Continue reading Passion and Procession. The Art of the Philippines

Mervyn Bishop

Mervyn Bishop, a Murray man, was the first Aboriginal person to work at a major metro daily newspaper, joining the Sydney Morning Herald in 1962. In 1971 he was named Australian Press Photographer of the Year. He would go on to cover major events, including the anti-war protests of the 1960s, the Bicentennial in 1988, and Aboriginal community life in remote regions of Australia. Continue reading Mervyn Bishop

Vivid Festival 2017

A bonus visual sociology, so we can all share in the glowing loveliness of the Vivid Festival, an annual event in Sydney. Runs from May to June.

[People gather in front of a fountain that is lit up with a large red lotus flower. In another scene, a structure shaped like a tree – with a tall concave stump and three cylindrical disks on top – is lit up like a tree with flying birds and leaves spreading and growing. Music coming from the installation is a pleasant instrumental]

Continue reading Vivid Festival 2017

Felices 140 (Happy 140): Film Review

Part of the Spanish Film Festival, Felices 140 (Happy 140) stars Mirabel Verdu as Elia, a woman throwing herself an elaborate 40th birthday party in a remote villa. She invites her sister’s family and her lifelong friends as well as an old lover, who shows up in a helicopter with a self-centred and vain girlfriend half his age. This consistently amusing film takes a twisted turn, after Elia reveals she’s won €140 million.

Envy and resentment bubbling below the surface rises quickly as a moral crisis threatens Elia’s happiness. Interestingly, Elia’s grand romantic gesture to sweep her old flame off his feet is an unfamiliar twist on usual romantic comedy fodder. Continue reading Felices 140 (Happy 140): Film Review

Bangarra: Eora – Bennelong

Eora – Bennelong by Bangarra Dance Theatre.

This installation for Vivid Festical was on the side of the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge. A breathtaking dance and art concept. Continue reading Bangarra: Eora – Bennelong

Adman: Warhol Before Pop

This Andy Warhol exhibition covers his work, life and inspirations in the 1950s when we worked in the advertising industry. The two displays shown first are recreations of window displays he made for Gene Moore, who was the display director for Tiffany & Co and Bonwit Teller department store. Other pop art figures also designed for stores but did so under pseudonyms. Warhol signed his work. Continue reading Adman: Warhol Before Pop