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The Adele Kay Adele Mirowski Adrian Adam Alison Hawthorne Ford Amanda Carmen Cromer Amy Bishop Amy Goodwin Andrew Ross Angelica Pasten-Anderson Anne Rosser Anneke van de Vusse Anneliese Milk Barrie Byrne Bec Adamczewski Bek McWhirter Belinda Bauer Ben Britten ben ikin Ben Walter Bill Seager Brett Littleton Brett Maryniak Bronwen Jones Cameron Baxter Caren Han Casey Garrett Catherine Case Chris Cooper Chris Nicholas DAVID COLEMAN

are a group of young (ish) people who enjoy engaging in a bit of cultural gluttony at the tasmanian museum and art gallery to join visit Danica Pitt David Chung David O’Byrne David Tng Delia Nicholls di andoni Diana Dzelalija Donita Shadwick Edwina Foster Eleanor Downes Elizabeth Clark Elizabeth Jack Ella Woods-Joyce Ellen Daniels Emerson Shuey Emma Bett Emma Savage Emmanuelle Bostock Erin Linhart Felicity Graham Fiona Hazelwood Garrett Donnelly Geoff Attwater GLENN MEAd Grace Warburton greg kerin Greg Lehman Gretchen Meares Helen Berwick Irene McGuire

www.tmaggots.org.au

JACK ROBERT TISSOT James Bryce James Wood Jana Amonthaweepon Jane Anderson Jane Christie-Johnston Jane Longhurst Jaqi King Jenni Sharman Jennifer Lavers Jennifer Phillips Jess Atkinson Jill Walker John Keane John Morgan John Sexton Josef Martin Justin Munday justin murphy Kate Heffernan Kate-Ellen Murray Katie Ferguson Katinka Seaberg KELLY EIJDENBERG Kevin Redd Kim Foale Kim O’Sullivan korinna leach Lea Crosswell Leigh Faulkner

Liz Fitzgerald Lucy Hawthorne Lucy Henry Madelyn Munday Maria Pate Mark Fitzpatrick Mary Anne Lea Mary Cunningham MaryAnn Herbert Mathew Oakes Melanie Brough Melanie Horder Michael Carrington Cromer Mike Rowe Naomi Skelly Nicola Smith Nicole Gordon Noela Foote Norin Alam Pam Webb Peta Knott Pete Smith peter burridge Prue Loney Rachael Gates rachael rose Rebecca Harwood Robert Kilpatrick Rohan Astley

Rowan Henderson Ruth Snape Sam Dix Sarah Bishop Sarah Reinhart Saz Newbery Sharon Joyce Shaun Wilson Skye Targett sophie carnell Sophie Edwards Steph Houstein Stuart Edwards Sue Baker Susan Molyneux Susie Rowe Suzy Cooper Teresa James Tom Hiscutt Tony Brown tony hope Tracey Cockburn Travis Tiddy Valentina Marshall Veronica Sierink Vicki Colville Warwick Marshall Warwick Pease Wes Young Yvette Watt

FRONT COVER: Falls Festival by Kim Eijdenberg (www.kimeij.com). BACK COVER: MONA FOMA Interactive Ball by Jack Robert Tissot (www.jackroberttissot.com). Views expressed in this newsletter reflect the views of the authors and not necessarily those of the TMAGgots group or the TMAG.


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website sponsor Falls Festival. Photograph by Kim Eijdenberg (www.kimeij.com).

Another epic summer in Tasmania! Check out our colour pages for a photo essay of sorts of a superb season of music festivals. But we all know it doesn’t end there. Ten Days on the Island, which runs 25 March – 3 April, is no doubt a tantalising temptation for culture vultures such as yourself. Sign up to our email list for free at www. tmaggots.org.au, if you haven’t already, to receive discounted entry to three special Ten Days events. MONA. MONA. MONA. We don’t know what else to say, so we mainly just put in some pretty pictures. KELLY EIJDENBERG President, The TMAGgots Inc. kelly@tmaggots.org.au

more than just fine printers.


MONA TOUR PHOTOS BY glenn mead


MAGGOT of the month MARCH

Kate Heffernan came from Ireland last October to work for Ten Days on the Island. They call her Ticketing Kate and she likes how this sounds. She is also fifty per cent of reputed Dublin-based Theatre Lovett, who specialise in work for young audiences. Theatre Lovett endeavour to accentuate the positive of their current hemispherical split by marvelling at the longitudinal wonder that places Kate eleven hours ahead in times of deadlines. She likes fancy paper, lemon tart, Garrison Keillor, Stanley Yelnats, how alphabet primers deal with the letter X, Tasmania’s flecktarn topography, cutting pictures from National Geographic, her cobalt Brompton, the moment after the houselights go out, lists, apples and colouring books.

Some comments from the TMAGgots exclusive after hours tour with MONA Director Mark Fraser and curator Nicole Durling: “AWESOME! Had such a great experience last night. Saw different things than I saw on the opening weekend. Got an ‘insiders’ perspective from Mark that was very revealing. Really marvelled at the SCALE of MONA and the attention to detail...I am a total museum nerd!” “Wow! I’ve never been in love with a building before!” “I was so inspired that David Walsh came up with the idea(s) for MONA then did exactly what he wanted. I felt like a little kid while exploring the building, unhindered by serious plaques that necessitate standing and ‘appreciating’ the work for an appropriate length of time. I’m still giddy thinking about it. I can’t wait to share it with everyone I know.”

“We felt very special having such a tour; specifically hearing how David acquired some of the work, why some pieces are there, the anarchic approach to displaying the art and the diversity of displays. Good to see some local work commissioned too. Nothing offensive from my perspective, just a modernistic view of art. For anywhere to be gifted such a facility is amazing; just lucky for us that it is Tasmania!” “It was amazing: Mark was a great speaker, and it was really interesting to get his point of view, particularly as it’s a museum with a more obviously personal slant than usual. Reminds me a bit of those nineteenthcentury rich antiquarian/collectors – wonder if Walsh’s collection will last better than theirs? It’s very cool, nonetheless – fun and thought provoking.” “I felt very privileged to be there after-hours and to hear from the curators, but also a great sense of

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privilege that we have this wonderful attraction in Hobart – you could be forgiven for thinking you were in Berlin or New York! Utterly amazing. It was great to scratch the surface ahead of returning for a day of roaming the whole museum (and lunch, wine I dare say... just to be sociable!)” “I think it was fantastic – a lot of sensory overload, I will be going back a lot over time I expect. The architecture, display methods, lighting, art of various media was all very good. Great place to organise an event. I recall the initial old museum could be hired for parties, weddings and now maybe a funeral!” “Loved it! Looking forward to getting back there...”


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now showing

STAR/DUST VOLCANO LOVER / LUCY BLEACH 18 March–3 July 2011, art gallery 4

Volcano Lover is an explosion of colour, light and sound. Drawing together recordings of volcanic Mount Yasur in Vanuatu, projections, artifacts from childrens’ volcano-making workshops, Volcano Lover is supported by Detached Cultural Organisation and presented as part of Ten Days on the Island 2011.

traditional museum cabinets, and boudoir furnishings. This sensorially rich installation invites viewers to indulge their fascination with volcanoes and to experiment with the tools used to understand them. C20: 100 years of Australian art from the TMAG collection on now until June 2011, art galleries 1, 2 &3 Featuring some of the finest works from TMAG’s Art and Decorative Arts Collections, C20 is an exhibition celebrating Australian art and design from the twentieth century. Featured artists include Merric Boyd, Grace Cossington Smith, Russel Drysdale, Ian Fairweather, Donald Friend, Emily Kame Kngwarreye, Clement Meadmore, Sidney Nolan, John Perceval, Arthur Streeton, Albert Tucker and Philip Wolfhagen.

near and far: tasmanian art until July 2011, Freeman Gallery

near and far: tasmanian art comprises a selection of works by contemporary artists and designers who have a strong connection to Tasmania. near and far includes photography, digital prints, painting, sculpture, furniture and jewellery and together the works represent the diversity of contemporary Tasmanian art and design. The exhibition presents major works which were acquired by TMAG in 2010 through the Contemporary Tasmanian Art Acquisition Fund. Also featured is caradi, a collaborative work by Lola Greeno and Natalie Holtsbaum which was donated to TMAG by the Alcorso Foundation.

what should I do at tmag this weekend?


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ARABIAN NIGHTS On Thursday 24 February, TMAG Maritime Heritage Coordinator Liz Adkins took us on a short tour of the remarkable exhibition Sons of Sinbad: photography by Allan Villiers. Complete with Turkish coffee, figs, grapes, melon, olives, halva, turkish bread and dips, the Maritime Museum will smell like cinnamon and cardamom for weeks!


What floats our boat

This year’s Australian Wooden Boat Festival was HUGE – more than 100,000 people graced Hobart’s docks to indulge in a bit of beautifulboat porn, plus the great food and entertainment. But what does it take to make it to the start line? Wes Young tells us. Like most boat owners exhibiting at the 2011 Festival, my preparation was a combination of several months’ serious work and some last-minute bodging. Our family had two huon pine boats entered: the 108-yearold Avalon and the slightly younger Unome (clocking in at 103 years). To own and restore one historic boat is a major undertaking. To be simultaneously involved in restoring two: madness.

Unome entered the festival very much a work in progress, half painted and almost a bare hull. Only a trained eye could appreciate how many hours had gone into the restoration, with much of the work hidden below the waterline or inside. This is one of the great things about the festival; boats are encouraged to enter in almost any condition, allowing the public to see just how much goes into such a project. Avalon, on the other hand, was much further progressed, being essentially finished on the outside with final fit-out now in the planning stage.

it had been to Port Davey several times, and won the Hobart Regatta a couple of times). I saw some truly inspiring boats (I’m glad I left my wallet at home). The classically beautiful Miss Eve, the Rockliff family motor launch, would have to be a standout. The oldest boat was Admiral – and seeing it finished and on the water, taking paying passengers (which is what it was originally built for in the 1860s), was a real highlight. The 1930s Sirocco was another stunner; and

On the Thursday before the Festival we sailed Avalon and Unome into Constitution Dock to moor alongside the Flipper fish punt (which turned out to be a bonus when hunger struck!).

Some of the highlights…I met two former owners of Unome that we didn’t know about, and they helped fill in the boat’s history (for example, Unome


recent events I’ve now got my eye on Goudie, a partially restored huon pine tug boat, built in the 1940s.

…and lowlights…Upon entering Constitution Dock at the start of the festival, I was approached by an ‘official’ in a dinghy (hereafter referred to as Captain Ahab, for he also seemed wooden and inflexible), who bluntly told me I couldn’t enter the dock. This seemed strange, given the organisers had contacted me the previous day to tell me when to enter. I put this down to Captain Ahab being over-zealous and stressed by the wooden flotilla now bearing down on him. Then I noticed that of the myriad officials zipping around in kayaks, punts and zodiacs, less than half were wearing life jackets. I asked another official why they weren’t and was told that “officials don’t have to”. Odd, given that I was required to, and that it’s actually against the law not to. This practice continued all weekend and really stuck in my craw during the ‘Quick & Dirty Boat Race’ where thousands of spectators watched 15 to 20 ‘officials’

Avalon

openly flouting the law – while also setting a really bad example to the hundreds of children present. (Why am I telling you this? Because it’s a cautionary tale of how a fantastic festival was slightly soured for exhibitors, due to a lack of communication and due diligence on the part of the organisers. Something to consider for next time?)

All in all, it was a great experience. It was really enjoyable meeting other people with a common passion, learning a few tricks of the trade, having a rum or two, and talking shop. I think I’ll definitely be participating next time – and bringing a few extra life jackets for those officials.


A conversation with two artists Student journo Ally Gibson sat down with young Tasmanian artists, Rob O’Connor and Tom O’Hern, to discuss their upcoming show at Bett Gallery.

Tom O’Hern is making a career out of drawing monsters. He graduated from UTAS with Honours in Fine Arts in 2006, and since then he’s been drawing inspiration from demons throughout history, bad street graffiti and heavy metal band t-shirts. He was chosen as one of four artists to be given a studio through Contemporary Art Spaces Tasmania (CAST) in 2010. Ally Gibson: Your latest work reminds me of Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are (particularly your piece ‘Maurice Needs Change for the Bus’). Is he an inspiration?

TO’H: Yeah, that’s who the piece is named after; and ‘Pieter Has Spent Too Much Time in His Room’ is from Pieter Bruegel’s The Triumph of Death. It’s kind of like the ‘I’ve got a knife’ version – the version that pulls you from your car at the traffic lights – it’s not meant to be happy. It’s a weird reference to particular things such as Where the Wild Things Are that I don’t know how many people will get. I used to get scared of all those books. AG: So why did you choose to re-create them? TO’H: My pieces are all thinly veiled self-portraits. They’re all sorts of monsters throughout history and medieval depictions of hell. Although, I guess it’s meant to be more about medieval Hobart, rather than Europe. I always find it funny looking at all that art, trying to work out whether they believed in it or not, because some of it’s just too cute and funny. I’m kind of into metal t-shirts and

“You probably shouldn’t look towards me for social commentary, I just do pictures...” badly done graffiti and that kind of thing. So the work is also about that – boys being little shits. Pissing in public and stuff [laughs]. AG: In an article, ‘Corrupting Youth’ (published in Artlink), writer Briony Downes said your work “signals the growing significance of street art and its importance as a creative vehicle for personal and social commentary.” Do you view your work as street art? TO’H: Yeah, that’s sort of something I’m not sure I fit into anymore. I’m kind of on the fringe, but I wouldn’t classify my work as street art. It’s something I’m interested in. I’m interested in really shit graffiti, like scroll – I think there’s a really beautiful aesthetic in that kind of thing. It informs my work. I still do murals and street art occasionally.


artist recent events prof ile

AG: The method you use to create your work looks similar to the Aboriginal dot paintings. Is that an inspiration? TO’H: Yeah, there’s certainly a parallel. It’s also meant to be etchings and woodcuts, and illustration. I really like that repetitive markmaking; it’s really primal. AG: Going back to that quote, is social commentary something you strive for? TO’H: I think so, but I’m not going to make it obvious for people. I’m not going to do a picture of dead Iraqis or something. I mean, I don’t know exactly what I’m trying to say or what my comment is. I don’t know anything – I’m just an artist. You probably shouldn’t look towards me for social commentary, I just do pictures, you should be looking to people with a bit more experience. AG: So with Maurice and Pieter, are you trying to displace those historical characters to make them relevant today, by saying ‘Maurice Needs Change for the Bus’? TO’H: Oh no, that was just an aside. You’re not meant to read that much into it [laughs]. Pieter’s been in his room on the internet looking up

Images courtesy of Bett Gallery Hobart Tom O’Hern Maurice needs change for the bus 2011 enamel on board 119 x 89 cm


obscure shit. It’s really just me, me asking for change for the bus. AG: And it’s you spending too much time in your room? TO’H: Yeah [laughs]. I’m always in there going insane. But Pieter comes from this. It’s awful, but it’s also kind of funny. It makes me think of shit metal bands that people started in High School.

AG: What is the significance of merging animals with humans? TO’H: Again, it’s just that idea of ridiculous old demons and monsters. So weird. I really can’t work out if people did literally believe in this stuff. Or are they just taking the piss? AG: In your artist profile at Bett Gallery it says your work is personal narrative exploring masculinity and suburbia. Why are these two aspects important to you? TO’H: It’s about shit metal and shit graffiti and being tough. Being a boy.

Tom O’Hern Pieter has been spending too much time in his room 2011 enamel on board 119 x 89 cm

AG: So, is it more the adolescent part of masculinity? TO’H: Yeah, but it’s all the way through. Men are weird…


Artist Rob O’Connor has a taste for Corbet and other 19th Century French painters. He combines history with the everyday, with his art an organisation of incoming information, rather than a purely original creation. Rob graduated with Honours from UTAS School of Art in 2007 and was the 2008 Moorilla Scholarship recipient.

“But if you go see all the great paintings you realise they’re not flat – they have lumpy, goopy, messy bits that tie together to make a whole. “

AG: You paint classic images of lovers and then put a ridiculous nose on them, such as in ‘Les Amants Dans la Nuit’. Why? Rob O’Connor: I like the idea of painting being this affluent thing that you buy from regal commissions – to show off how much wealth you have. You get a full body painting with armour and there’s something trashy about that. It’s hilarious how they try and gussy up something by putting a painting on the wall, like in a porn set or something. It might be the interior of a trashy diner, you know – it could just be a print on the wall in a shitty frame with fake gold. I honestly like daggy old painting anyway. I really like fruit bowls and this romantic idea of Europe. If I just did a straight copy, it would be more sincere, and there’s something pretty lame about it. So the nose is taking away that romance of Europe. It’s to cover my sincerity – make it look like a joke. It’s sort of like, watch my left hand while my right pinches your wallet. You know,

I don’t want to be outed as a sincerest [laughs]. AG: Why not? RO’C: It’s daggy! And so out of fashion. I could just paint like nothing has happened since Corbet, which I’d be happy to. AG: Your latest work looks more classic; do they hold as much meaning as your earlier pieces? RO’C: Yeah, it’s still referential; every single thing is still copied from something. But some are copied from my own copies, like from journals I was doing in Paris where I would just copy everything that caught my eye. So the original has changed so much that it’s almost unrecognisable. And I like that. AG: Your artist profile with Bett Gallery says you remove yourself from any true claim of authorship. Why is this appealing to you? RO’C: Well, there’s a lot of veiling going on, and hiding. It’s how you deal with the world. When Tom [O’Hern] and I


both met we were very into West– Coast lowbrow graffiti. When you live in a very electric, urban world, you can’t avoid stuff even if you want to – you’re not choosing to see ads everywhere or crap blaring out of shops, it’s all unsolicited. And then you take all this stuff and you have to organise it and put it into piles. [With our art] we’re controlling what information we’re processing. AG: So you see yourself as a vessel? RO’C: Yeah, absolutely. It sounds like a bit of an excuse for avoiding any responsibility. If you like it or not, I can be like, “Well, I didn’t make it – it’s not me!” But it’s just a reflection of my diet, which has been French academic and French romantic stuff – so there’s a controlled intake. I think I freaked someone out last time Tom and I had to talk about our work. We had a couple beers and I started crapping on about how “We’re not even artists, maaan, we’re just filtration units on the river of time,

maaan.” The lady we were talking to directed all her questions at Tom from then on. AG: Which Jesus have you decided to depict in this exhibition? RO’C: Well, it was based on my nephew, who’s this bratty little kid. You think of Jesus as a fat little infant or the beardy guy suffering, but in between that he was a carpenter’s kid. Think of it: some tradie’s kid who grows up to save the world. I cornered my nephew and he had a bag around his neck and a box on his head, being a brat – Jesus, he may as well be. AG: What are your favourite aspects of your latest work? RO’C: The one thing I’m really happy with is the edges. I’m loving the edges, if I may gloat [laughs]. The edges are the bit that I don’t hate or agonise over. Whether it’s drips or the fuzzy edges – it’s just to be completely self-aware that it’s a

painting you’re looking at, it’s not trying to be a photo, and you wouldn’t want it to be. Maybe it’s an Australian thing – the way we experience art through books and the media. We don’t really have the resources to go to the Musee d’Orsay and the side-effect is that we end up with this flatness, this really sort of slicked flatness. But if you go see all the great paintings you realise they’re not flat – they have lumpy, goopy, messy bits that tie together to make a whole. I like paintings that are paintings.

Rob O’Connor and Tom O’Hern will be showing at Bett Gallery from Wednesday 9 March until Tuesday 5 April. Rob O’Connor Right: Les amants dans la nuit 2011 oil on canvas 91.5 x 71 cm Left: Write a eulogy 2011 oil on canvas 91.5 x 71 cm


Take a Sneak Peek 7–8 May 2011 BY PETE SMITH How often have you walked or driven past an old heritage place and thought ‘how cool would it be to sneak in and check it out’ ? Open Doors is a great way to do just that. The 2011 event is coming up soon, and as long as you’re good you won’t even be arrested. Open Doors is a concept based on a series of free public events run in Canada and Scotland, where curious and exceptional heritage places that aren’t usually open to the public are being opened to visitors for tours or activities, some for the first time. Here in Tassie we’ve added a local twist, by adding some free walking tours to the mix. We do this because we feel that Tassie has some terrific

untold tales to tell, about people and places, that give us insight into our island home and its many stories. This year the focus of Open Doors is on Tassie’s sometimes hidden agricultural heritage. It is one of a number of events being held under the theme ‘From lamingtons to lasers’ as part of the Tasmanian Heritage Festival throughout May 2011. As gluttons for all good things, why not suss out the program and explore some of our earliest agricultural sites, places, features or stories across Southern Tasmania. There’s something for everyone, with sites in the Huon, the Midlands and loads in between. Open Doors is a great opportunity to get to know our heritage, so why not indulge yourself on the 7th or 8th of May 2011. Photos on opposite page by Sue Wendell Smith, Anna Watson, David Hudson, Deirdre Macdonald and Robyn Shaw

Open Doors is organised by Heritage Tasmania (DPIPWE) on behalf of its event partners. For information on Open Doors go to: www.heritage.tas.gov.au or for the full Tasmanian Heritage Festival program go to: www.nationaltrusttas. org.au/heritagefestival.htm ‘Hartzview pickers’ huts are part of this year’s Open Doors program


history

Op Open D

A Tasmanian Herita


Seen the awesome, growing display outside the museum? ARTBIKES is a new, free bike borrowing service that offers a fun and environmentally sound transport option for arts lovers and culture vultures to cruise the streets of Hobart. Cycle your way around Hobart’s dynamic and prolific art precincts and galleries on a state‐of‐the‐art, super stylish, ARTBIKE. It’s a great way to exercise your mind and body, all the while pedalling your environmental stripes. Inspired by other successful bike‐ sharing services internationally, ARTBIKES is unique in that it has been developed specifically to service the arts and cultural sector, enabling locals and visitors alike to easily access Hobart’s dispersed arts precincts and galleries. With a 15 strong fleet suitable for both male and female riders, ARTBIKES


ARTBIKES

Pedalling Art in H o

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are available to borrow from two central locations within Hobart: Arts Tasmania at 146 Elizabeth Street and the TMAG. So grab a bike, a helmet and a specially designed map and pedal your way around Hobart’s cultural hotspots. When out‐and‐about you will meet a crew of new friends who will happily mind your ARTBIKE while you absorb some art. Commissioned through Hobart City Council’s Public Art Program, local architect and urban designer Ken Betlehem has created a series of Bike Hubs which in themselves are works of art. Laser‐cut silhouettes of people – Dazza, Gazza, Bazza, Charlie, Ruby , Ez, Mac, Fred, Edie and Jo – are chatting, milling about and lingering in Hobart’s streets, happy to act as ‘human bike‐ locks’ whenever needed. Both the public art works and the ARTBIKE service reinforce the sentiment that Hobart is fast

becoming a place that puts people at its heart: by encouraging activity, pedestrians, cyclists and movement beyond cars and reinforcing the city’s inherent ‘liveability’. ARTBIKES is a celebration of the city and its creative industries. arts@ work is proud to be delivering this project in partnership with the Hobart City Council, and with the assistance of the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery and the RACT. ARTBIKES is also supported by the Tasmanian Government’s Climate Change office through its ClimateConnect grant program.

ARTBIKES users are provided with a helmet, locks and specially designed touring map .

ARTBIKES can be borrowed for up to 7 hours at a time, between the hours of 9:30am and 4:30pm, 7 days a week (the ARTBIKE must be returned on the same day it was borrowed).

The RACT (Royal Automobile Club of Tasmania) provide ARTBIKE users with a free Bike Assist service and can be called upon anytime to help with punctures, mechanical faults or damage.

Further information on ARTBIKES, including the full bike‐borrowing terms and conditions is available at: www.artbikes.com.au.


Artist’s Concept

melancholy and ambiguity, not to mention also being a funky place to lock your bike up! The notion of the ‘outline’ or profile is realised as a wobbly line, imperfect and meandering, appropriate to the task of making visible the becoming of a person. As a gathering, or as individuals, the sheer physicality and scale of the stands invites an emotional response and welcomes a tactile one too. The stands tell a story whether or not they are tethered with a bicycle. Each stand is linked to its site by considering how people move through or interact with each site. Each site is thus seen as having a unique character, or cast of characters. Ken Betlehem, 2010 Jonathan Wherrett

Street furniture for bicycles has, over the years, taken a default position of benign bent tubes crudely cast into the pavement. With or without bikes such furniture clashes with the elegance and technical refinement of the bicycle in both scale and form, seldom does such furniture elevate either the bicycle or the rack to a place of wonder. With this work, my proposition is that as bicycles were designed for people, the ‘bicycle rack’ could be rendered in the form of a person or ‘character’. The thinking continued through moving beyond the heroic figure or form in the public realm and instead went exploring the rich territory of human frailty through posture, texture and finish. With a collection of some 10 or so figures, the cast changes from site to site as each grouping seeks to strike a balance between humour,


IMAS is a teaching and research organisation created to bring together the many strands of marine and

Antarctic research currently being pursued in Hobart and to encourage the development of strengthened research links and exploit new research opportunities.

www.imas.utas.edu.au


MONA +FOMA PHOTOS BY GLENN MEAD AND JACK ROBERT-TISSOT


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BalletLab BY JOSEPHINE BRIGINSHAW Scattered amidst the MONA FOMA program was Melbourne based BalletLab’s contemporary dance trilogy. These included the resurrection of Amplification (1999), Miracle (2009) and for the finale, the world premiere and only Australian performance of Above (2011). Artistic Director Phillip Adams’ combination of contemporary choreography and conceptual imagery provided the audience with a complete theatrical experience.

Amplification was thrilling. The opening sequence of highly technical, partnered choreography was highly charged, at times violent, and explored our response to physical and mental impact equating in death. These depictions of the body in chaos showed Phillip’s, and his dancers’, remarkable skill and ability. In the

aftermath naked bodies are dealt with in both a specifically gentle, sensitive and also highly manipulated and confronting manner. I was left to contemplate deeply disturbing concepts; ritual, torture, death and burial.  Confronting, horrifying, but also transfixing, Miracle explored the world of religious cult fervour. With an intense and captivating succession of scenes, the quartet depicted the frenetic attempts at transcendent connection, the effects of cult mentality on cult group members, post-frenzy fallout and all the tragic and futile consequences of radical religious rant. The dancers contributed to the agitation of the score; sacrificial shrieking, distorted sounds of a street march, discordant harmonicas and soft prayer fading into silence. 

The final chapter Above brings us the experience of Catholic mass as nine dancers perform alongside 40 Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra Choristers who wall the boundaries of the stage. A Shepherdess and lambs are on a spiritual journey where confession, guilt and punishment are paramount in their quest for reincarnation. Throughout the performance the dancers attempt to reach high, higher and higher in their dream to reach to a godlike state of levitation, their rebirth.


SOUNDSCAPE Photos by Glenn Mead and Bianca Milani


Was it worth it? We asked young Apple writer Bec Hardwood to share some of her experience of helping to organise the recent Soundscape Festival and Sounds on the Grounds. The youth of today are meant to be able to do anything, right? From being a student with a part time job, to becoming a festival organiser of The Soundscape Festival seemed like a small jump...at the time. Mark Stewart and I discovered this on the second weekend of January. That’s right, the weekend when it was 35 degrees on the Saturday, and then a spit of rain turned into a torrential downpour. But that was only a small occurrence on the craziest weekend of my life. Mark and I, both students of the University of Tasmania, became involved with Mainstage Events along different paths. Mainstage is an events and management company, primarily focusing on The Soundscape Festival,


but also being the heart behind Sounds on the Grounds and A Day in the Gardens. The company offers amazing opportunities to younger people, as today it is difficult to gain experience in management and marketing positions – especially if you are unexperienced yourself. This time a year ago, the idea of a festival organiser brought only a few things to mind; meeting the bands, receiving free tickets, attending crazy

after parties and bossing people around. Well, it includes many more tasks than these initial thoughts. Mark, Soundscape Festival organiser, and I, Sounds on the Grounds festival organiser, found ourselves in the middle of the wild life of the event management role attempting to tame it.

The day of The Soundscape Festival was stressful, radical, emotional and successful. From organising the artists to organising the audience, top team work is vital. The rush you receive from cleaning artists’ band rooms in approximately 30 seconds, making sure cartons of water are being run to the bar before the cold ones turn warm, receiving emails from tour managers with delayed flight schedules turn thrilling, once you are sitting next to Tim Rogers, or watching Basement Jaxx from the wings.


Sounds on the Grounds runs the day following Soundscape. And because Mark and I had the experience day of Soundscape under our belt, we knew a bit more about how the day was going to be run. Although the crowd had changed from one day of dancing teens and young adults, to families and a more varied demographic the next day. Being festival lovers and addicts, the feeling of being behind the scenes could possibly hold an even deeper love affair and addiction. Working from 8am one day until 4am the next does have its perks. When

members of the band The Born Ruffians were dressing me in my rain poncho, I thought “that’s it, my life is complete”. And just like the feeling when you won (or didn’t lose!) that running race back in primary school, we experienced an overwhelming feeling of achievement once we saw the audience dancing and having such a great time – that’s when I knew it was worth it. When the team of some of the hardest workers I’ll ever meet became a family for the weekend, and when band members of Operator Please offered me their deodorant, that’s when I knew that I had been working hard – and it was worth it!

MAGGOTof the month

APRIL

By day, LEIGH FAULKNER inhabits an IT cave in Salamanca Square and fixes broken computer systems by turning them off and back on again, but in a professionally managed way, of course. By night and on weekends, one of his favourite hobbies is to dabble in some local theatre. Over the years this has given him the opportunity to play some great characters including, a ‘latent playboy’ business man, a hapless wannabe US State Senator, a lovesick John Howard-esque Liberal Party candidate and a blue-collar, Mesopotamian construction worker, carrying a fake stone!


FALLS PHOTOS BY KIM EIJDENBERG


TMAG

STAFF

tagging dugongs and sea turtles and, of course, looking at a wide range of bird-related issues.

PROFILE

Her particular focus lately has been on eliminating the accidental bycatch of birds (and sea turtles) in commercial fishing gear. This is a global problem and through Jenn’s work, Australia has taken the lead in finding ways to allow fishermen to keep catching their target species while allowing birds and turtles to get ‘off the hook’!

BY KEVIN REDD

Dr Jenn Lavers

International Woman of Mystery (Seabird scientist and Tech Officer in Collections and Research/ Zoology at TMAG) TMAGgots would have already met Jenn at both of the National Science Week “Speed Meet a Science Geek” events at the Museum where she talked passionately about seabirds, fisheries and plastic debris – her main area of postdoctoral research in Tasmania. Originally from the landlocked Rocky Mountains of Canada, Jenn developed an interest in waterbirds while doing her Honours degree in Alberta. Since

Tagging green turtles in north-Queensland [2007]

then she has worked on seabirds in sub-Arctic islands off Labrador (Canada), the remote (and much warmer!) North-western Hawaiian Islands (USA) as well as around Australia at exotic locations like Lord Howe Island and Queensland;

Now she has put on a new hat at TMAG – in the Collections and Research Section. She’s working on (yep you guessed it) seabirds! Her project is looking at the Flesh-footed Shearwaters of Lord Howe Island and trying to better our understanding of what happens when they ingest plastic marine debris. The next time you see Jenn, be sure to ask her what she thinks about muttonbirds!


ABOVE: Satellite tagging Dugongs in north-Queensland [2007]

TOP RIGHT: With gun (Polar Bear protection) on the Gannet Islands, Labrador [2005] RIGHT: With Bonin Petrel chick on French Frigate Shoals, Hawaii [2006] FAR RIGHT: Forcing Flesh-footed Shearwaters to vomit up the plastic in their stomachs [Lord Howe Island, December 2009, photo courtesy of Ian Hutton]


Vansformation

TMAGgots catering supplies, recycling, research fishing gear and other oddities. The exterior, however, was in dire need of some ‘sprucing up.

BEFORE

BY KEVIN REDD After the great successes of Next Show, MONA FOMA, Sea Spray and numerous other projects around town, Alphabetrix, a young Tasmanian urban arts collective, have developed an excellent reputation for transformative spray can art. They recently got a small but rolling commission…my slightly tired 1985 Ford Econvan as an empty canvas! This particular van has a rather illustrious history as a catering/ events/gardening and composting vehicle. It is constantly full of homebrew bottles, garden prunings,

Jackson Parker, Stu Dobell and Aedan Howlett tackled the project with lightning speed, a marine based theme and a heap of creative energy…hitting it with 43 cans of spray paint in one afternoon of multicoloured mayhem. What began as a dull and rusty ‘tradie’ kind of vehicle was cleaned, masked and sprayed in a matter of a few hours….now a cruisy surf wave scene adorns the passenger side (care of Jackson Parker), a massive puffer fish (Diodon nichthemerus) looks out from the back of the van (thanks to Stu Dobell), and the giant purple octopus by Aedan Howlett is watching the driver’s side! Look out Hobart, there has been a very cool Vansformation….and NO, it is

NOT just another WICKED hire van… but rather a themed work of art on four wheels! Look for the van around town or sitting in a quiet cul de sac in Taroona where my neighbours in suburbia think I am totally crazy! Aedan Howlett has also recently been involved in The Grand Poobah renovations and created two artworks for the Rosny Barn during the Clarence Jazz Festival in late February. Any enquiries for other vehicular or structural commissions can be directed to: www.alphabetrix.com.au


recent events

MAGGOT of the month

MAY

TOM HISCUTT starts each day by hitting the snooze button a minimum of seven times. He then sits in the shower contemplating whether or not to leave his flat-mate any hot water. He then walks to work, usually 45 minutes late, all the while considering the consequences of simply turning around and going back to bed. Given that he is a solicitor specialising in estate administration and most of his clients are dead, the consequences are usually minor. Sometimes at work he grumbles and whines out loud so that co-workers think that he is working, but he will be on the internet instead. When not imbibing alcohol, judging others, re-watching episodes of Mad Men or washing his shirts he tolerates going to the gym, playing football, drinking coffee and ironing his shirts. He has begun a small art collection to which he hopes to one day add a Jackson Pollock; he has heard you can pick them up for cheap on eBay, but that you have to watch out for fakes.


RESEARCHER OF THE MONTH images Š Emma Rowden

Feedback from our TMAGgots survey showed that some readers would like to hear from researchers who aren’t necessarily scientists. Ask and you shall receive! This edition, Kevin Redd caught up with a very interesting PhD student at University of Melbourne...

Researcher: Emma Rowden PhD Candidate, University of Melbourne Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning


Emma Rowden began her research career by studying Arts and Architecture with an emphasis on film. While at University she discovered a strong interest in court architecture while she was working in Sydney with a firm renovating one of Sydney’s oldest courthouses. Emma put together the Conservation Management Plan for the building, and got hooked! Courthouses, for an architect, are really interesting spaces. Not only are they complex buildings to plan, but they also hold a really important symbolic role in the urban landscape. And they house quite dramatic moments in people’s lives which adds further to their intrigue. Not long after a conversation in a taxi with her (then) boss, Emma found herself moving to Melbourne from Sydney to take up her PhD candidature on an Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage project, ‘Gateways to Justice: improving video-mediated communication for justice participants’.

Emma is currently in the latter stages of her PhD and she has spent her time investigating the architectural side of things with the overall aim of trying to improve the experience for people participating in court processes from remote locations, most of whom are connected by audio-visual technologies such as CCTV and videoconferencing (otherwise known as videolinks). She has been primarily looking at shifts towards the virtual trial with the introduction of videolinks for participants who take part in court proceedings from remote locations – and what implications this may have for the design of court architecture. Initially videolink technology was introduced to make it easier for child and vulnerable witnesses to give evidence, and in some instances to link defendants into court for minor administrative hearings. As soon as the technology was installed, however, and courts could see the

benefits – the time and cost savings – use has dramatically expanded. Now you can see experts giving evidence from their offices, remote judges sitting in city courts connecting to regional courts and vice versa, court mental health assessments are happening over videolink – even prison sentences can be handed down remotely. Throughout the course of her PhD, Emma has been able to meet people from the Remote Witness department at the International Criminal Court, visit the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, and the International Court of Justice. She has also helped organise two International Court Tours and met a range of interesting people – judges, lawyers,


other architects and academics from all over the world – who share her interests in court design. She was also able to take part in the project’s major experiment, which involved taking over a courtroom in the County Court of Melbourne for a month, and conducting mock trial examinations on volunteer witnesses to test out the various impacts of improving

treatment of witnesses and/or improving the environments in which they are giving evidence. A highlight though was following a Magistrate on their regular Goldfields court circuit in Western Australia. Their research team camped along the way and got a real understanding of what the term ‘remote’ really means!

Tasmanian courts who use videolink technology: Magistrates Courts in Hobart, Launceston, Devonport and Burnie, Supreme Courts in Hobart, Launceston, and Burnie, Risdon Prison, Launceston Prison, Hobart Remand Centre and Ashley Youth Detention Centre, Deloraine.


The Tasmanians behind Art Almanac

Janice McCulloch’s bio

When you pick up a copy of Art Almanac to check out what’s happening around Australia’s art galleries, you may not realise that a Tasmanian is to thank for the publication’s success. This is a belated tribute to owner and publisher, Janice McCulloch, who died aged 70 in November 2009; as well as for her fellow publisher and daughter, Cath, who sadly died in early 2010. Janice took over the art directory in the mid 1980s and turned it into the country’s go-to monthly guide to visual arts. In the 20-plus years that Janice published the Art Almanac, she grew it from a small Melbournebased publication to a national art bible with a distribution of more than 10,000 copies.

Cath McCulloch

Janice McCulloch

Janice was passionate about helping young Australian artists. She amassed a large collection of art works, which the McCulloch family intends to keep intact and available for loan. Her daughters, Penny and Helen, continue to publish Art Almanac, which has never missed an issue. The McCulloch family’s passion and achievement is an inspiration for other Tasmanian art practitioners.

Janice was born in Hobart in 1938, the daughter of Fred and Maisie Eastman. Her family moved to Bruny Island in 1946, where Fred was a dairy farmer and served as Council Clerk. At 12, Janice moved to Hobart to attend Hobart High School. At university, she studied a Bachelor of Arts. Two years as an infant school teacher were followed by marriage, and five children. The family was based in Sydney. Janice returned to university to finish her degree, spending several years as a librarian before hearing about a small publication for sale. Janice bought Art Almanac and moved it to Sydney, where it expanded now covering the visual arts across Australia.


Julien Poulson’s

Italian job BY AMANDA CROMER

An eclectic and prolific Tasmanian musician and performer, Julien POULSON was the recipient of the Alcorso Foundation’s Italian Arts Residency (alcorso.org.au) in 2010. He talks us through the life-changing experience. Tell us about your creative background. I was brought up by a family that valued the arts and culture; my grandparents ran the Salamanca Art Gallery and I used to spend a lot of time hanging around the gallery. I guess I was lucky to be around the arts community from such a young age. But later, as a teenager, I found living in Hobart stifling, I didn’t really have much focus or direction and I just wanted to split from the

Italian musicians waiting in line for a visa to get in to France

island as soon as I had the chance. I bought a guitar, a Nikon camera and a backpack and wandered north, hitch-hiking, busking occasionally and eventually stopped in Alice Springs. I worked out in the desert, went from job to job, made portrait photos of people I met along the way and, somehow, the solitude of this kind of drifting lifestyle suited me. It gave me a taste for the ‘lonesome’ highway.

Later, when I realised I should go to school and learn a bit, I headed back to Melbourne and did the rounds of the art courses, met some great teachers at Box Hill TAFE and enrolled to study Art & Design. I had an incredible year, just loved the all-round arts course, finished up with a strong folio, then enrolled in RMIT’s Media Arts. Again, I had some inspirational teachers, but again I had the urge to hit the road. One night, I got a call from a friend of a friend in Hong Kong who offered me a job as art director with the Hong Kong Standard newspaper; it was an outlandish offer but I jumped at it and, next thing I knew, I was totally immersed in the dense lifestyle of living in a metropolis. At the Standard, I ended up spending most of my time cartooning and illustrating editorials. I was already homesick for Australia by the time I was offered a job as ‘producer’ with a leading animation company, a fascinating job


working with traditional 35mm cell animation. It gave me an appetite for cinema and an insight into the film business in Hong Kong, but I didn’t stay long and soon found myself back in Melbourne. Unemployed. I took my photography folio around record companies and had lots of compliments but no serious work offers…until I met a really cool guy at Polydor Records who explained that all the jobs had finished for the year but, if I could “use a Mac to do layouts I could start work tomorrow”. Overnight, I became a Mac hack/ graphic designer working a cozy little gig in the music industry. It was cool; up to this point in time I’d also been playing in bands here and there. In Hobart, I’d been a member of a strange kind of blues rock band called Neighbours’ Complaint, where I was a kid playing with the older boys. We’d play regularly at the legendary Dog House. In Melbourne, I landed in a blitzkrieg band called The Stiff Kittens. It was a blur; we’d recorded

a single at the time and later (while in Hong Kong) I learned an English label had released it and the EP was an indie hit. (Half the reason I got the job in HK was because my friend and employer was keen to have me come and play guitar in his band.) Anyway, working in the music biz, in the belly of the beast, this re-ignited my interest in getting a band together. With my girlfriend at the time, and a drummer, we formed a punk-pop trio called Moler. Moler was soon playing every Thursday night at the infamous old Prince of Wales in St Kilda. One day I got a call from an A&R guy who told me he’d like to meet Helen and I and that he might have an opportunity for us. He suggested we could meet for a coffee at Leo’s spaghetti restaurant. Two hours later, we were sitting there blowing the froth off a couple of old-school cappuccinos, then in comes this guy who looks the spitting image of music mogul Michael Gudinski…Oh my god, he even paid for our toasted cheese

and tomato sandwiches! Turns out this guy, Steve Cross, was working for Gudinski and we were soon signed up to Mushroom Records. I quite my day job and spent the next few years touring, recording and releasing a string of EPs with Moler. The band was playing all over the country and its debut album was nominated for an ARIA, but that’s as far as it went. I learnt a lot, especially about music marketing, but I lost interest in the whole game. I went back to doing day jobs, freelancing as a designer or art director for ad agencies and publishing houses. Sometime in 2005, I got a call from a friend suggesting I should apply for a media producer position in East Timor. Soon I was in Dili, working with Truth & Reconciliation where I worked from a gaol cell in the notorious Comarca prison; the jig involved dealing with some pretty confronting text and imagery, media concerning Timor’s long fight for independence and the devastating


and horrific consequences of this struggle. I spent much of my free time in East Timor escaping from Dili and writing a screenplay concerned with a Tasmanian story. The play was my first attempt at a film script and was titled Convict Cannibal Pearce. The process got me interested in stories concerning Tasmania and I sketched out ideas for a trilogy of films, Pearce being the first, while the second story would be a play about Michael Howe, his vengeful wife Black Mary and aboriginal bounty hunter, Muskito. Muskito is the title of the work I’ve just drafted while living in Venice this year as the Alcorso Foundation’s Italy resident. What prompted you to apply for the Alcorso grant (did the idea come first, or the opportunity)? Both really. The experience of working in East Timor compelled me to look for a way of returning and working in that kind of environment again.

In 2007 I applied for, and received, an Asialink residency to return to Timor. Right at this time, Timor had again exploded into violence and I was forced to make new plans. I headed to Cambodia. The experience of being able to live in and explore a new culture through a fully funded arts residency was incredible. It really gave me so much, and I continue to benefit from this experience in Cambodia to this day. It also meant I was again traveling abroad and living away from my own culture and comfort zone. Funds from the three-month residency ran out, I had to have more work. I’d recorded an album back in Tasmania as The Green Mist (a collaboration with a number of excellent musicians including new Tasmanian Brian Ritchie), and friends from The Beasts of Bourbon. The album ‘Next Stop: Antarctica’ garnered some stunning reviews and a release through a label in Spain. Next stop: Barcelona.

Once in Europe, I was keen to stay as long a possible. I began playing solo shows, mostly in France; in 2008 and 2009 I was a guest musician at The Binic Folk & Blues Festival in Bretagne and on the latter occasion, I met The Beards of Venice, Italy. We struck up an immediate friendship and I vividly recall seeing them off early one foggy morning on the Bretagne coast. Signors Massimilliano, Andrea and Emanuelle (looking like characters from a Western) were insisting I visit them in Italy should I be heading that way, and again I met The Beards during a four-day stay in Venice. I told them I thought they looked like movie characters. I love the Italian western genre of film, and I suggested we could work together to make a spaghetti western or an Italian rock opera, where the drama unfolds in the Tasmanian wilderness. They liked the idea, ordered yet another round of grappa and I soon left Italy with the idea of somehow


Julien Poulson (with guitar) with Professor Louie, Miss Marie (USA) and The Beards (Venice) on the floating stage in Padova


returning. I was vaguely aware of the Alcorso Foundation but didn’t know about the Italian residency. When I did come across this grant, I jumped at it. Actually, couldn’t believe it, perfect!!! However, I also realised that competition would be very tough and my idea – ‘a spaghetti western (on acid) set in the Tasmanian wilderness’ – might not present well. But the opportunity of the residency and the idea of my Italian project converged and I put my reservations (fear of failure) aside and applied. I am very, very grateful my application was successful. Tell us about the project you worked on in Italy: what's been the result so far? Well, the whole experience is still sinking in. I’ve had an incredibly busy year and the four months in Italy is an experience I’m still processing. The most immediate results included striking up great friendships, being very well received, finding some great accommodation, work-space

and getting lots done. This process initially began with meeting people, introducing them to my outlandish ideas. Later, I got the go-ahead from the Venezia Council to use the Villa Widman on the Riviera Brenta as a studio space. Inside this stunning 17th Century villa we set up a mobile recording studio and spent two months tracking music for Muskito. Later we were joined by legendary American producer Professor Aaron ‘Louie’ Hurwitz – producer of The Band (Bob Dylan) – and Louie really augmented the music production side of things. We wrote a lot of songs, learned a lot, worked hard and played a series of live shows. At the same time, I was working on my own, sketching out a treatment for Muskito as a play. On this side of things, I was completely alone. I’m not a trained writer so I found the process slow but extremely rewarding… I mean, I rarely find the time just to let my thoughts wander and to try art forms that are new to me. I spent a lot of time

walking between Dolo and Miro while exploring the countryside along the Riviera Brenta. The result of all this is a huge body of new music written and recorded, a sketch of a play shaping up really well and a lifetime of new ideas to explore, not least the idea of returning to the same place and continuing on from where I’ve left off. Actually, what I really hope to achieve now, is staging Muskito as a live show, with The Beards, and hopefully presenting it in Tasmania. I’ve written to 10 Days and iHos about this idea but haven’t had any bites yet, so I’m keen to hear from any local theatre or producer types who’d like to collaborate. What advice would you have for others wanting to apply? I think the thing that probably convinced the panel to support my application was recognising just how passionate I was (still am) about the reason I wanted to go and work in Italy. If you’re applying for something like this, you really must be totally focused on making such


an opportunity a defining moment. I mean, even if it also seems like a brilliant opportunity for a holiday in Italy (it is!) the Italian residency is sure to resonate through all your future artistic endeavours, and perhaps life decisions as an artist. How has the experience changed your creative perspective and career prospects? I’m not entirely sure. I’m still winding down and processing the whole experience. When I first arrived, I had the pleasure of staying with the Tolin family in a big old farmhouse. The old man of the family, Ico, told me as we (and his six sons) gathered around the table for the daily lunch – homemade table wine, two courses of farm produce, dessert, an espresso and a shot of grappa – “We once had two English stay here before you came… that was when we hid them from the facistas during the war and when they left I was never sure if they survived and escaped to England… with you coming to stay…I feel like it’s a kind of return.”

Anyway, I was honoured to have 76 year old Frederico tell me this. And I hope my creative career is as long and as fulfilling as Ico’s country life, and that I can think back and remember moments like this that stay somewhere in the background picture for the entire journey. What are you working on now? Right now, I’m sorting out rubbish that needs to be taken to the tip before I head off on an extended tour with The Cambodian Space Project. I’m also planning the year ahead, what to do, where to go, how to do it and how to get there. It’s a quiet, contemplative time back in Tassie for me. But I’m very excited about The Cambodian Space Project and the next bit of touring to Cambodia, China, USA and later Europe and back to Australia again. In the middle of this itinerary I’m hoping to spend a couple of months living in Cambodia where I’ll get back to working on Muskito. I’m also hoping to travel back to Mondulkiri, a mountain

province in Cambodia, where I want to collaborate with the Bunong (hill tribe) musicians I met late last year. I’m also trying to keep my skills up, my ideas fresh and of course, seek out funding and the means to get by. Does being Tasmanian change the way you view things? Yes, I think it does. Once I thought it was a minus, now I know it’s a plus. Any last words (Italian food and wine...)? Oooh…Italian food and wine! I’ve always loved it; the Italians tell me their cuisine is really the only area where Italy is still alive and well… I was treated to the most amazing hospitality, put on too much weight, drank a lot of fine wine and was regularly plied with prosecco. I thoroughly recommend that anyone visiting Venice, take a trip up the Riviera Brenta, stop at Molino’s in Dolo, give my best to Daniella and enjoy one of the warmest restaurants in all of Italy. Molte benne!


Get Low BY SIMON DELITTLE

When I think about legendary actors I find there is a key role that resonated and came to represent the way I remember them. Bette Davis is Margo Channing, Duke is Ethan Edwards, Michael Caine is Jack Carter and Richard E Grant… no prizes for guessing! Until I watched Aaron Schneider’s new film Get Low, Robert Duvall was always the immaculately groomed, soft spoken Irish lawyer, Tom Hagen. Now when I close my eyes and imagine Duvall I see a dishevelled, cranky old recluse with a grudge against a world of which he can no longer be a part. It is the performance of his long and distinguished career. Loosely based on the life of Felix “Bush” Breazeale, Get Low tells the story of a misunderstood hermit who, when the realisation of his imminent death becomes apparent,

recent events review decides to hold a huge ‘funeral party’ where people can come to tell the many stories which have grown about his mythical evil deeds. But only Felix knows the real truth and it is a story that has haunted him for his entire 40 years in seclusion. On board to arrange the ‘party’ are funeral director, Frank Quinn (Bill Murray) and his young assistant Buddy (Lucas Black) whose motivations (“mmmm, Hermit money... That’s good”) evolve as they become more familiar with Felix’s unique temperament and story. Other central characters include Bush’s former sweetheart Mattie (Sissy Spacek) who manages to rekindle a complicated relationship with a very changed man and Bill Cobbs as a stubborn Reverend struggling to forgive Felix for not repenting his sins some 40 years prior. The themes of mortality and redemption have a long history in cinema and whilst they might sound morbid, often result in happy tales strewn with lashings of gallows humour. Through a combination of

flawless performances, beautiful cinematography, entertaining writing and measured plot development, Get Low manages to keep the audience captivated and ultimately deeply moved by Felix’s journey. First time director Schneider shows great restraint and maturity in not letting an extraordinary tale with highly emotional allusions slip into farce or melodrama. Cinematographer David Boyd evokes the magic of Douglas Sirk in his beautiful compositions of weather-affected nature as the backdrop to the gritty realism of the characters lives. The music by Jan A. P. Kaczmarek is subtle and reflective of the era in America’s Deep South. Ultimately Get Low is a beautiful demonstration of how a simple tale told with intelligence and restraint by professionals at the top of their game can evolve into a small masterpiece. •

Get Low will be showing at the State Cinema from May 12 (www.statecinema.com.au)


DAVE BROTHERIDGE

The TMAGgots is run entirely by young volunteers. We thought it might be interesting to highlight some of the work other young volunteers in Tasmania are getting stuck into. This profile was produced by Volunteering Tasmania in conjunction with a radio interview program involving local broadcaster Edge Radio (who are incidentally almost entirely run by young volunteers themselves).

EDITED By Jean Somerville-Rabbitt Dave Brotheridge is a young man in his late twenties with a successful career in IT (despite admitting that he does at times hate computers). However he admits to feeling as though there was at one point something missing from his life, and so he went in search of that elusive something by doing some volunteer work with the children’s charity Camp Quality. Why did you start volunteering? A friend of mine had cancer as a child, and went to Camp Quality so I finally got myself together and applied and got into it. I wanted to give something back to society; to help kids in a meaningful way, so it seemed Camp Quality was the perfect

organisation. The application process is time consuming and very detailed, to ensure that people wishing to volunteer are doing so for the right reasons. The organisation also offers in-depth training to assist all of its volunteers. How did you get into volunteering? They match you up one-to-one with one of the kids so you can track progress and help them along and all that sort of stuff. I’ve been regularly volunteering with the charity for about two years and I plan to continue my volunteer work forever as it’s been such a worthwhile experience for me. And what is it like being a volunteer? Volunteering has provided me with the unique opportunity to have fun whilst helping others, and it’s one of

my best life experiences so far. My little camper is a ball of energy – he runs around and stuff and half the time he just wants to chill out and things, and other times he will go nuts. The camper I’m matched with is now out of remission. I visit him on a monthly basis, sometimes more frequently depending on how he is, and I’d describe him as a fun, energetic individual. Camp Quality’s catchphrase; “Laughter is the best medicine”, demonstrates how volunteering can be lots of fun. Some of the fun activities I’ve recently been involved in include things such as camps, water fights, jumping castles, limbo, playing in sumo suits and water skiing to name just a few.


What do you get out of volunteering? Basically it’s just a lot of fun, you just get to muck around and pretend like you’re a kid again. There is a serious side to my volunteering, and I admit at times it is hard to do. Some of the kids have seen some horrible things and put up with things that kids just shouldn’t have to put up with. I’m often surprised by how well the children cope and how resilient they are. This is a predominant reason for enjoying my volunteering experience as much as I do. If I get to turn around and make a bit of a difference then it’s fantastic. Where to from here? In addition to continuing volunteering with Camp Quality – I’d like to stay for as long as they’ll have me – I’m also keen to extend my experience by becoming involved with Wildcare. My ultimate aim with volunteering through Wildcare is to be able to rescue beached whales from the beaches of Tasmania.

Like most volunteer organisations, Camp Quality is always on the look out for more people to help out. You can find more information on their website – www.campquality.org. au. Basically they need all sorts of different people; all the kids come from different walks of life and no two kids are the same. I usually tell people that it’s the best thing I’ve ever done, giving something back and seeing the kids light up is just amazing. What does Volunteering Tasmania have to say? It’s amazing how people can feel completely inspired by volunteering as it’s done out of their choice. There’s a vast range of different volunteer opportunities out there that people can try and many choices to spark their interest and feel motivated. Volunteering can be fun and rewarding and it’s amazing the connections that people can make – social, personal and work-related.

Give it a try!

recent events volunteer profile

To find out more or to get involved in volunteering in your local community go to www. volunteeringtas.org.au


Contributors...

Glenn Mead’s parents always wondered whether adopting a child raised entirely by seals was the right move.

Kelly Eijdenberg is graphic designer of, and contributor to The Apple. One time she tested an out of office automated reply from her own email address, causing an earthquake in Tehran.

Simon Delittle possesses all the integral  qualities of a born leader, except followers.

Shaun Wilson sometimes puts words in sentences that horseradish shouldn’t be there.

AManda cromer takes part in anything that involves words, pictures and free food.

Kevin Redd is currently working on three different research projects – lobsters, octopus, and beer... and has a colourful van to show for it!

Bec Harwood believes in all things bizarre, and would like to grow up to be a fairy who wears a pink tutu.

Ally Gibson has a penchant for writing in cafes and not tolerating rudeness dressed up as honesty.

jack robert -tissot is a pirate by day, photographer by night.


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Apple Autumn 2011  

Quarterly newsletter by the TMAGgots Inc (www.tmaggots.org.au)

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