Aussie rock stars to shine on Hastings By Kate Sears

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For the chance to bask in the glory of the best of Australian rock, join us at Under the Southern Stars — The Summer Festival on Saturday, January 12, at Hastings’ Foreshore Reserve. A huge line-up is set to spread good vibes in a superb outdoor setting this summer, including legendary ARIA Hall of Fame inductees the Hoodoo Gurus along with Australian rock royalty You Am I. Rocking the Mornington Peninsula will also be Eskimo Joe, The Superjesus, British India, The Getaway Plan and Scott Darlow. 

After speaking to Dave Faulkner from the Hoodoos in our October issue, we can confidently say that they have consistently been one of the most inventive, lyrically smart and goddamn exciting rock’n’roll bands that Australia has ever produced. Join us at Hastings to dance along to their well-known hits such as My Girl, Bittersweet, What’s My Scene, Like Wow Wipeout and The Right Time. 

One of Australia’s all-time quintessential rock’n’roll bands without a doubt would have to be You Am I. Receiving an impressive 10 ARIA awards since their first record was released more than two decades ago, they’ve continued to climb the charts with their successful recording career and renowned stage presence. 

Successfully balancing mainstream commercial success while managing to keep their alternative music roots secure, iconic indie legends Eskimo Joe have released five ever-so-popular studio albums, with three of these debuting at No.1 on the ARIA charts. Join these much-adored indie rock kids from Fremantle as they play hits that have scored them three International Song Writing Awards, 11 WAMI Awards and eight ARIA Awards. 

One of Australia’s most successful and respected rock bands who remain a staple on Aussie rock radio are The Superjesus. Their live shows deliver the perfect mix of their late ‘90s hits and current melodic rock outings, which results in them attracting new admirers while satisfying the appetites of the loyal fans who have followed their sound for more than 20 years. They’ve collected three ARIA Awards and have released multi-platinum albums plus hit singles.

Having released five albums, scored three ARIA Top 10 debuts, multiple ARIA and J Award nominations, won an AIR Award and had five entries into the Triple J Hottest 100 over the course of their career, we’re ecstatic to welcome British India to the Mornington Peninsula. They’ve conquered every stage they’ve graced and played an array of sold-out shows and music festivals galore.

The Getaway Plan’s debut album, Other Voices, Other Rooms, catapulted them to the forefront of the Aussie hard rock and post-hardcore scene and made them a household name. This Melbourne-based alternative rock band formed in December 2004 and have undertaken dozens of tours across the country and internationally. 

For more than 10 years, Scott Darlow has been one of this country’s hardest working and most successful independent artists. He combines an incredible vocal ability with hooky guitar-driven rock and the distinctive sounds of the didgeridoo thrown in. Scott Darlow is the real deal.

UNDER THE SOUTHERN STARS

A: Hastings Foreshore Reserve, Marine Pde, Hastings

T: 13 61 00

W: underthesouthernstars.com.au

FB: utssconcerts

INSTA: utssconcerts


Future looks bright for renamed club

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Bowls in Rosebud is undergoing a raft of changes, with Rosebud Beach Community Bowls Club’s new name reflecting its direction as a true community organisation.

Three years ago the club’s future looked bleak, with uncertainty about its tenure on prime beachfront land, declining membership, poor greens and weakening finances. Since then, it has been revitalised with innovative programs, community involvement and a new energy. Support from Mornington Peninsula Shire Council has been invaluable, extending the club’s lease and ushering in needed repairs and renovations. Financial stability has been restored and led to improved greens, which are soon to be augmented by a new all-weather artificial surface, thus ensuring year-round availability for members and the community.

Friday Barefoot Bowls is a cornerstone of the club during summer, when families enjoy relaxing with friends and the kids on the greens or enjoying a quiet drink and meal in the welcoming clubrooms.

The club supports local charities such as aged support group 39+, Luke Batty Foundation and mental health programs as it reaches deeper into the community it serves.

ROSEBUD BEACH COMMUNITY BOWLS CLUB

A: Nepean Highway, Rosebud

T: 5982 2463

W: rosebud.bowls.com.au

FB: rosebudbowlsclub

Barefoot bowls and Christmas cheer

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Widely admired for its stunning views and set in a secluded, tranquil part of Mount Martha, the Mt Martha Bowls & Social Club is known as a “hidden gem”.

Barefoot bowls is for players of any age group, and office workers, sales people, students, teachers, friends, family and people from every walk of life can take part. On Fridays from December there’s a barbecue from 6pm and the bar is open while you enjoy the sunset from the balconies. Phone Steve Rose on 0419 893 231 or email the club to ask about its Barefoot Bowls & Pizza deal.

The combination of bowling greens, bar and new kitchen also makes the club the perfect venue for Christmas parties and corporate and social club functions. Just bring flat-soled shoes or bare feet and the club will provide everything else, including the bowls and people to teach you how to play.

Ask now — you’ll be surprised how much fun everyone has!

MT MARTHA BOWLS & SOCIAL CLUB

A: 45 Watson Rd, Mount Martha

T: 5974 2894

E: [email protected]

 

Take off your shoes and bowl

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Mount Eliza Bowling Club is conveniently located in Canadian Bay Rd, next to The Village shopping precinct, and barefoot bowls is held from 5.30-7.30 pm on most Friday evenings from November to March. Don’t worry if you’ve never played before because club members are on hand to provide assistance for those who are inexperienced.

The cost is $10 per person for the two-hour session, and children under 12 can have a go for free. You can also purchase a season pass for only $50 if you wish to come along regularly. Drinks are available from the bar at members’ prices and you can bring your own food if you wish.

For further details, please contact Ken on 0417 551 873, and mention this ad to get one free session valued at $10 during November. And for private functions, please contact Mandy on 0490 164 091.

MOUNT ELIZA BOWLING CLUB

A: 90-100 Canadian Bay Rd, Mt Eliza

W: mtelizabowlingclub.com.au

FB: mtelizabowlingclub

 

Stunning setting for your next function

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Situated in the Peninsula hinterland surrounded by farmland, orchards and wineries, Main Ridge Bowls and Pétanque Club is a million miles away from the summer traffic jams of the coast.

As well as two picture-perfect bowling greens in this picturesque setting, the club has an airconditioned function room with a fully licensed bar and seating for up to 100 people. Your function can be fully catered or you can bring your own food and take advantage of the club’s kitchen and barbecues.

All the bowls equipment you’ll need is supplied, and club members will be on hand to help. Social pétanque functions can also be arranged. The fees are published on the website MainRidgeBPC.com.au under the Functions tab, and you can contact secretary Robert Hudson at [email protected] for further details.

MAIN RIDGE BOWLS AND PÉTANQUE CLUB

A: 455 Main Creek Rd, Main Ridge

W: mainridgebpc.com.au

FB: mainridgebowlsandpetanque

INSTA: mainridgepetanque

 

Friendly club in a gorgeous setting

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Flinders Golf Bowls Club is a small and friendly club in a beautiful private setting surrounded by gardens and birds at the bottom of Bass St.

The club will be hosting Twilight Bowls every Friday night from 5-7pm (weather permitting) from November until the end of February.  Green fees are just $10 a head, which includes the supply of bowls, while children under 13 can come along and play for free.

As well as a licensed bar, the club has an undercover barbecue that’s available for visitors to use, so why not bring a sausage, a steak or a tofu burger and enjoy your dinner on the sundeck under shade umbrellas.

For more information, call Sue on 0409 972 306 or email [email protected]

FLINDERS BOWLS CLUB

A: Bass St, Flinders

W: flindersgolfclub.com.au/cms/bowls/about/about/

FB: flindersbowlsclub

 

A warm welcome awaits

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What better way to enjoy a balmy summer evening than getting together with family and friends for a game of lawn bowls. From 5-8pm every Friday between December and February, Dromana Bowls Club is inviting members of the public to try their hand at this hugely popular sport in a friendly, relaxed environment.

For just $5 for each adult, the club will provide suitable loan bowls and free basic coaching — all you need to bring is soft, flat-soled shoes such as sneakers. Bare feet are fine too. Children are especially welcome to have a go — there’s no charge for under-13s — as long as they’re under adult supervision, and the club even has small children’s bowls for them to use.

No bookings are required unless you’re part of a group of 12 or more adults, and there’s drinks, hamburgers, sausages, dim sims and other hot finger food available. Look for the signs on Latrobe Pde to direct you to the club, where a warm welcome awaits.

DROMANA BOWLS CLUB

A: 1 Stawell St, Dromana

W: dromanabowlsclub.com.au

FB: dromanabowls

Country racing at its best

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Racing returns to the historic Emu Plains Racecourse on Saturday, November 10, for the first of six meetings conducted by the Balnarring Picnic Racing Club.

It would be hard to find a more picturesque setting for a racecourse than Emu Plains, with magnificent gums, distant views of Western Port Bay and plenty of picnic spots for a family outing. With a variety of food vendors and a well-stocked bar, everyone will be catered for.

The children’s playground is always popular along with face-painting and children’s rides, while marquee sites and roped off areas can be booked online by visiting balnarringraces.com, where you’ll also find details of trials and jump-outs. You can also renew your memberships or apply for membership online; application forms are also available by phoning 0413 874 982.

The club has continued its support of charities with another $5000 being distributed among five groups, and it has pledged $1500 for drought relief in East Gippsland, where three picnic racing clubs are fighting to survive.

Race days at Balnarring have something for everyone and are perfect for relaxing with family and friends.

 

Amazing art and delectable dining

The McClelland restaurant is a picture-perfect setting for al fresco dining and events. Photo by Dan Magree.

The McClelland restaurant is a picture-perfect setting for al fresco dining and events. Photo by Dan Magree.

McClelland Sculpture Park+Gallery, celebrated as the home of Australian sculpture, is located 45 minutes from Melbourne at the gateway to the Mornington Peninsula. With a wide-ranging collection of more than 100 sculptures, the park comprises 8ha of designed landscape and vast areas of indigenous bushland. The McClelland restaurant serves delicious and inventive dishes using locally sourced produce from the Mornington Peninsula, offering al fresco dining and events. 

McClelland’s exhibition program focuses on the development of modern sculpture and various forms of spatial practice, and encourages contemporary artists to develop and address challenging issues current in Australia and a global context. 

Atlas of Memory: (re)visualising Gordon Ford’s natural Australian garden presents research by Annette Warner, School of Ecosystems & Forest Sciences, University of Melbourne. The exhibition comprises diverse archival material relating to the influential practice of mid‐ to late-20th century landscape designer Gordon Ford.

Also showing is the exhibition Black Paintings, by Karingal-based artist Sanné Mestrom, which presents a series of free-standing woollen tapestries on steel frames accompanied by a suite of gouache paintings. The works celebrate the textural qualities of the painting surface while referencing art history and craft traditions.

Annette Warner’s Atlas of Memory: (re)visualising Gordon Ford’s natural Australian garden and Sanné Mestrom’s Black Paintings are on until November 11.

MCCLELLAND SCULPTURE PARK+GALLERY

A: 390 McClelland Drive, Langwarrin

T: 9789 1671

W: mcclellandgallery.com

Let’s all turn on to the Hoodoos in Hastings By Kate Sears

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Dave Faulkner knows that everyone has their own significant story that they associate with his songs. For the Hoodoo Gurus co-founder, lead singer, guitarist and songwriter, it’s an honour to be a part of so many people’s memories.

Dave and the Hoodoos are performing in Hastings on Saturday, January 12, as part of the Under the Southern Stars summer festival, and boy, is he raring to go!

“The tour sounded great and musically it will be a fun collection of artists,” said Dave. “The Mornington Peninsula is a beautiful area too, so you really can’t go wrong. It was a no-brainer, as they say.”

We just had to ask how such hits as My Girl, Bittersweet, What’s My Scene, Like Wow Wipeout, and The Right Time came about. He finds that raw ideas just float into his mind and he records them in voice memos to inspire his songwriting. However, the majority of his songs, including What’s My Scene, started as a simple melody.

“The rhythm brought those words to life. I thought to myself, ‘What words suit those notes?’, and that’s what I believe the notes were saying. I know it sounds silly, but to me I heard those words in those notes, and then I asked myself ‘What do they mean?’.”  It’s a catchy song that half wrote itself as Dave used it to search for his own identity and really ask himself “What am I doing?” Focusing on what words and concepts were important to him really made the song what it is.

Dave is strong believer in doing what interests him. He’s still writing songs yet hasn’t recorded in a while because he’s got some projects happening under the radar. His role as chief music critic at a newspaper in Sydney has kept him out of mischief for more than four years. It’s a turn he never expected but he is in his element.

Promising to perform a set-list to please everyone, Dave says the Hoodoo Gurus plan to play the older classics.  Their biggest hits will be included to nurture new fans, and a few less travelled songs will be thrown in for the diehard fans. Whether they are performing to 10 or 10,000 people, the band just want their audience to have an amazing time and feel that they are the best crowd the Hoodoos have ever played for.

“That’s why we do it. It’s not about the ego; we just make sure that the songs sound right and that we put our best foot forward. That’s who we are.”

Connect with community at end-of-year gala

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Leading events company Agency83 is hosting an end-of-year celebration that will see the year out on high note.

To be held on November 30, this event will be one of a kind locally and will include dinner, drinks, first-class entertainment acts, blow-up photo booths, dancing and so much more.

Looking to connect with other Peninsula businesses and community members? Wanting to take your clients to an end-of-year event you can be sure will set the tone for ongoing relationships into 2019?

Celebrate your team with a fully organised event that will be a showstopper and say thanks for the support they have provided in 2018.

Rhiannon Pilton, the director of Agency83 and a familiar face from events such as our region’s business awards, hopes that with the support of the community, Agency83 will raise an incredible $5000 for a motor neurone disease charity and deliver on its ambitions of support.

Tickets are strictly limited, so do not miss your chance to attend this showstopper event. Tickets will be available via agency83.com.au

Mornington primed for Peninsula Cup

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One of the most popular race days of the year, Ladbrokes Peninsula Cup Day returns to Mornington on Sunday, November 4.

Featuring an eight-race card spearheaded by the $80,000 Ladbrokes Peninsula Cup (1600m), Mornington Racecourse is ready to shine with a variety of hospitality options, from the sit-down five-course all-inclusive menu in the Gunnamatta Restaurant, to the lively three-course menu in the Silver Bounty Lounge, to the ever-popular Highview Accounting Cider Marquee in the premium trackside location.

Fashion-forward racegoers should make a beeline for the Main Street Mornington Style Stakes competition, which will see winners nab a $1000 prize. Ladies, lads, squads and over-35s can enter the digital photography studio for their chance at being crowned and taking home the prize. 

Live music on the main stage, a silent disco and kids’ activities will keep the whole family entertained across the day. 

Tickets are available at mrc.racing.com

Wonderful Peninsula art, food and fun

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The Somers Arts Fair will be held in the beautiful coastal village of Somers on Sunday, October 28. It is Somers Primary School’s most important annual fundraising event and was established in 2003 to highlight the wealth of talented artists on the Peninsula.

Come along and participate in a variety of creative workshops in the new ‘craft alley’, or simply relax and be entertained by a diverse line-up of talented musicians. This year’s acts include Reilly Stapleton, Franjapan and Manorism.

At 2pm the main event of the day — the art auction — takes place featuring beautiful artwork by renowned artists. The totem poles are a distinctive feature of the auction, with many local artists creating these highly sought after artworks. 

Throughout the day there will be a variety of gourmet foods and homemade cakes on offer, as well as Peninsula wine, beer and cider, great coffee, and many country fair activities including children’s games, rides, a range of craft market stalls and more. For details, go to somersartsfair.com


Five-course treat for the senses 

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With many ticket options to the VineHop Saturday selling out quickly, attention is turning to the Peninsula VineHop Festival’s foodie-focused PostHop Sunday Session on Sunday, November 18. With a chilled-out vibe, the PostHop Sunday Session will be a five-course food and drink pairing at Hickinbotham of Dromana, with a focus on great food, an array of Peninsula beverages and entertainment from Kylie Auldist from the Bamboos.

Event organiser Lisa MacGregor said everyone attending the session will be given a ‘Degustation Passport’ entitling them to a five-course picnic-style lunch to enjoy at their leisure throughout the day. “Each course has been specifically matched with a premium Peninsula beer, wine or cider, which can be purchased on the day,” said Lisa. Passport holders can opt for vegetarian options or indulge in the following menu: 

 A selection of three Boatshed cheeses, served with crackers (can be GF) matched with Hickinbotham Estate Merlot or a Mornington Peninsula Brewery VinAle;

 Grilled fish taco, corn tortilla with shredded cabbage, lime-marinated corn, spring onion, pineapple, salsa and chilli mayo (GF) matched with Hickinbotham Estate Pinot Gris or a Red Hill Brewery Wheat Beer; 

 Chicken and chorizo paella (GF) matched with Hickinbotham Estate Tempranillo Joven or a Hix Pale Ale; 

 Asian-style pork belly skewers served with slaw (GF) matched with Hickinbotham Estate Pinot Rose or a Ten Sixty One Cider; or, 

 Chocolate brownie served with caramel sauces and cream (can be GF) matched with Hickinbotham Estate Noble Sauvignon Blanc or a Hix Barley Wine. 

Venture Bus Lines is providing buses to the session from Seaford North Recreation Reserve, 50 Railway Pde, Seaford; Mornington Primary School, 9 Vale St, Mornington; Dromana Recreation Reserve, 47 Pier St, Dromana; and Olympic Park Recreation Reserve, 80 Besgrove St, Rosebud. 

Get your tickets at vinehopfestival.com.au


Celebrate cinema this November in Rosebud By Liz Rogers

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Looking for something to do mid-November to relax before the end-of-year rush? Then pencil in November 16, 17 and 18 for an artistically inspired escape to Peninsula Cinemas Rosebud. This full of atmosphere cinema will be hosting its 20th annual film festival over three days and you’re in for a fabulous selection of films to laugh, cry and squirm to.

The Peninsula Cinemas Rosebud film festival is a great opportunity to view pre-release foreign language, arthouse and mainstream movies made for all tastes. There’ll be activities, prizes and all sorts of entertainment once you walk through the doors of this cherished cinema where art and history merge marvellously to create something very special. 

Peninsula Cinemas Rosebud is available for birthday party hire, group bookings, hosting fundraising events or for the luxury of a private screening throughout the year. Annual memberships are available for seniors, family tickets and Cheap Tuesdays offer great discounts, while purchasing in bulk for end-of-year corporate events brings great rewards — and a lot of fun too. 

Don’t miss out on an opportunity to indulge in worldwide entertainment this November. Festival opening night commences at 7.30pm with a wine-tasting. Full festival ticket includes all films, a goodie bag, the opening night wine-tasting and Saturday lunch for $100. 

PENINSULA CINEMAS ROSEBUD

A: Rosebud Pde, Rosebud

T: 5981 2555

W: peninsulacinemas.com.au

FB: PeninsulaCinemas

INSTA: peninsulacinemas

Get your tastebuds ready!

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Mornington Main Street Festival is bringing you a huge range of food vendors and wineries this October. With seven performance areas, stages, roving entertainment and children’s activities, it is a fun day out for all ages.

Quarry Mountain Dead Rats have joined the line-up with SugaTree, The Midweyers, Malcura, Joel Reed and Them Blues Cats, Super Saloon, Diddy Reyes 59' Rockers, The Vibraphonic Orchestra, Sam O’Connell, Mat Katsis and Eric Parker, to name just a few.  

Spend the day or just a couple of hours enjoying treats from across the Peninsula and beyond. Indulge in some old favourites, including The Flying Calamari Bros, DOC, Nica Tacos, and The Rocks Mornington, as well as new ones such as The Avocado Hut or Far Out Falafels. Don't forget to save room for dessert with lots of treats for you in store. Browse a wide range of handcraft stalls, including OMG SeaGlass Designs, Tenae Lily or Whimsical By Nature, and pick up something unique to take home.

Enjoy the Gloriana Pin-Up Queen 2018 competition, face painting, animal farm, Little Shop of Horrors characters and mascots, Casey Grammar School, Osbourne Primary, Mornington Secondary, the animals from Magical Mountain, Dudlee Djembe, J Step Dance, and Mornington Peninsula Libraries craft-making. 

Some of the Peninsula’s top wineries, including Bittern Estate, Chirping Bird Wines, Dromana Estate, Elan Vineyard & Winery, Rebello Wines, Stumpy Gully Vineyard, T'Gallant Winemakers, Underground Winemakers and Yabby Lake, will showcase their vintages, which you’ll be able to taste, buy by the glass or take home. Ten Sixty One ciders will also be available.

This not-for-profit community event is only able to take place due to the support of Mornington Peninsula Shire Council and generous sponsors such as The Grand Mornington, EastLink, Mornington Peninsula Magazine and others that all help either financially or in kind to make the festival such a success. 

Mornington Main Street Festival will be held on Sunday, October 21, from 11am-5pm. For more details, visit mainstreetfestival.com.au


How does your garden grow? By Liz Rogers

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It’s springtime on the Mornington Peninsula, and Mount Eliza is celebrating with a garden festival on November 10 from 9am until 4pm. This inaugural event honouring all things plants and soil, whether in residential or communal gardens or along the coast, gets down to the nitty gritty of gardening for pleasure and production.  

Hosted at the Mt Eliza Community Centre and presented by the Mt Eliza Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Mt Eliza Neighbourhood House, the garden festival will bring an array of experts together to answer most of your tricky questions on how your garden grows. The Bonsai Society, landscape gardeners, plant specialists, including native plant experts and bee keepers will be on hand to discuss and suggest, while garden sculptures, lawn maintenance equipment, gardening services, plants and outdoor lighting will be on show. There’ll also be three great walks taking place throughout the day, including saunters through the Toorak College grounds, the historical Ranelagh Estate and the regenerated coastal planting area along the foreshore at the bottom of Williams Rd.

A new project, Mt Eliza Neighbourhood House community garden, will also be launched in conjunction with the festival on the day. 

Get along to this great new community event to get your garden thriving and meet and greet like-minded people.  A full program will be available soon. A green thumbs up to that!

MT ELIZA COMMUNITY CENTRE AND NEIGHBOURHOOD HOUSE

A: 90-100 Canadian Bay Rd, Mount Eliza 

W: mountelizavillage.com


Exhibitions reflect McClelland’s diversity

Annette Warner’s  Atlas of Memory: (re)visualising Gordon Ford’s natural Australian garden  2018, installation view. Photo: Christian Capurro.

Annette Warner’s Atlas of Memory: (re)visualising Gordon Ford’s natural Australian garden 2018, installation view. Photo: Christian Capurro.

McClelland Sculpture Park+Gallery, celebrated as the home of Australian sculpture with a wide-ranging collection of more than 100 sculptures, comprises 8ha of designed landscape and vast areas of indigenous bushland. The McClelland restaurant serves delicious and inventive dishes using locally sourced produce from the Mornington Peninsula, offering al fresco dining and events. 

McClelland’s exhibition program focuses on the development of modern sculpture and various forms of spatial practice, and encourages contemporary artists to develop and address challenging issues current in Australia and a global context. 

Atlas of Memory: (re)visualising Gordon Ford’s natural Australian garden presents research by Annette Warner, School of Ecosystems & Forest Sciences, University of Melbourne. The exhibition comprises diverse archival material relating to the influential practice of mid to late 20th century landscape designer Gordon Ford. Ford was recently recognised as a person of national significance for his contribution to an Australian naturalistic approach to landscape design. Historically he is linked to the development of the Eltham creative movement and significant figures such as the architect Alistair Knox, photographer Sue Ford and other well‐known artists, writers and designers of this time.

Also showing is the exhibition Black Paintings, by Karingal-based artist Sanné Mestrom, which presents a series of free-standing woollen tapestries on steel frames accompanied by a suite of gouache paintings. The works celebrate the textural qualities of the painting surface while referencing art history and craft traditions.

Both exhibitions are on until November 11.

MCCLELLAND SCULPTURE PARK+GALLERY

A: 390 McClelland Drive, Langwarrin

T: 9789 1671

W: mcclellandgallery.com


Luckless footy team steals the Sorrento screen By Liz Rogers

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There’s a new flick that’s just been released down south at the class-infused Sorrento Athenaeum Cinema on Ocean Beach Rd, and if you’re up for a laugh — plus a few tears and home truths served up along the way — then this is for you.

The Merger is based on comedian Damian Callinan’s critically acclaimed one-man show he wrote about 10 years ago and which basically goes like this: former professional football player Troy Carrington returns to his old almost dead in the water country town called Bodgy Creek and is convinced into coaching the local and very lost in transit footy team.

Damian explains. “There’s lots of things at play in The Merger. I wrote this a decade ago and we are still dealing with the same refugee issues. Sure, the film is about footy, but it’s also about acceptance and rejection and how things go bad quickly. But they can turn around just as quickly too. We had guys from Northern Iraq on the set, while the soundtrack was created by refugees. Many of them are now training to be actors. Their stories are real. It’s fantastic to release it on the big screen after performing it live as a solo show for so long. It was also fun to work collaboratively for a change.”

Damian is well known for his singular comic relief and theatrical and televisual status. He is currently touring and dancing in Swing Man, which he “gave birth to without a midwife”, and has been performing for about 20 years. This Melbourne-based actor, comedian and writer who plays local footy with singer-songwriter Paul Kelly and actor, writer and musician Tim Rogers loves that The Merger is being released on the Peninsula. “My sister has a house in Sorrento and I still remember being let into that cinema one night just before close. There was no one else around and the guy kept it open just for me.”

The Merger stars Damian alongside Penny Cook (A Country Practice), John Howard (Mad Max, Sea Change) and Kate Mulvany (The Great Gatsby) plus a treasure trove of refugee performers. It’s funny, clever and hits the mark on what it means to be Australian. It’s on limited release from August 30.

 

Indigenous arts in the Top End By Liz Rogers

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Indigenous artist and Baluk Arts operations co-ordinator Tallara Gray has just returned from this year’s Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair, held in the Northern Territory in August, on a high. This was her second year at the fair, which she says “felt so different from last year when my eyes were wide open with wonder”.

“This year I knew what to expect, although it was much bigger and there was more to see. It was a whirlwind but amazing.”

The first DAAF was held in 2007 and included 16 Aboriginal-owned incorporated art centres. In its 12th year, 2018’s DAAF was filled with artist workshops and demonstrations, artist talks, Indigenous food experiences, cultural performances and story-telling and coincided with such events as the National Indigenous Music Awards. More than 2000 Indigenous artists from across Australia were showcased with 100 per cent of revenue going back to remote communities.

As a descendant of the Yadhaigana people of Cape York, Tallara understands how important it is to ethically promote and support the artwork of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art centres. She explains. “DAAF shows that we are a diverse people sharing our culture and that Aboriginal people in urban areas have a different artistic response. Baluk Arts is one of only two art centres from Victoria represented at the fair. This year there were four of us on the Baluk Arts stall. I took my jewellery made from natural materials, including kelp and river reed, sculptures and mixed media work and had a great response. I make all my work through Baluk Arts to ensure it is consumed ethically.”

This Frankston resident and Fine Art graduate from the Queensland University of Technology has been making art for as long as she can remember. She currently has work on show at The Gallery at Bayside Arts & Cultural Centre as part of the Freshwater/Saltwater exhibition, and at 25 she’s one of the youngest Indigenous artists to attend DAAF.

Top stuff, Tallara. The only way is up.

 

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