Britt Doherty | August 31, 2016 Outfit Inspiration: Friday night drinks (I can already taste the champagne) Illustrations by Juliet Sulejmani
Eddie Cleaver | June 24, 2016
The Oxford English Dictionary defines history as “the branch of knowledge that deals with past events; the formal record or study of past events, especially human affairs”. It is the definitive record of human exploits throughout time. We study history at school, we refer to it throughout life, we watch it in the making, we use it to learn lessons from the past, to use as a basis for progression and to record achievements, or failures. History gives us an opportunity to leave our mark on the world, to extend our story beyond our short lives. Being annulled into the realms of history allows us to live forever.
But isn’t history just a version of events? Recordings of those holding influence and power, those cultures who developed the written word, one of many versions of the reality of our past. There has been very little input into recorded history by 49.6% of the population for starters. To put so much reliance on historical record or to chase inclusion within it overlooks its most basic flaws. History is littered with inaccuracies, conflicting accounts, misinterpretation, personal influence, perjury, political and religious propaganda, guesswork even. To place so much emphasis on history seems absurd in today’s world of reliance on scientific study. Should it be put in the same category as story, fairytale, legend or religion? It would seem we should take history with a herculean pinch of salt.
Some influential humans live on, immortalised in history while others, many equally as influential, are forgotten. Why do we know of Darwin yet not Wallace, Tutankhamun yet not Hatshepsut, who was Cecilia Payne (the discovery of the elements which make up stars could seem to be of reasonable importance)?
Every scientific theory built upon the unrecognised steps of so many. Every war fought by the unquestioning loyalty of the humble infantryman or the advice of those less celebrated. What of the assistants and collaborators, mentors and supporters, those who often did the hard yards and dedicated their lives with little or no reward. They are lost in time, unable to be heard like ghosts searching for the afterlife.
There are many heroes, less so heroines, and always the obligatory villains. Often two sides of the same coin, just a change in lead characters. Who is the terrorist and who is the freedom fighter?
Do the realities of history even stand the test of time? We laud famous battles and leaders while forgetting the atrocities of war and colonisation. Are the achievements of a football team more important than those of Marie Curie? IMO they could be if that team is Liverpool FC. Is proving a somewhat tenuous genealogical link to Genghis Khan (a genetic test that is widely available) a badge of honour or a symbol of shame? Maybe it is an insight into the male psyche.
What if history tells us more than at first appears, what if history is more than a record of events over time. What if history is a record of what we want it to reflect, a reflection of our hopes and fears, our dreams and nightmares and most likely our egos and desires. It’s almost as if it was HIStory……….
Mel Howard | June 22, 2016
To people I love and some that I don’t. To people who pop up in my heart or are caught in my throat. It’s cathartic. I’m expelling toxins and tensions that live mostly in my hips and head. Often when I’m writing I have to pause to happy-cry. I’m so grateful to have had a feeling so intense about the letters recipient.
I’ve been writing letters lately that I may or may not send. I started writing them for myself. Because I have things in my head that maybe aren’t okay to say out loud, or are and I’m just not brave enough. Writing for myself because since coming to this place, I’ve been shedding the weight of words and promises that hold me back. It’s confusing. It’s hard to know what actually is me these days.
So far, it seems I’m really smiley. And chatty, but I knew that already. I like making people smile with me. I love lying in the sun and riding bikes. I love having a home space and filling it with candles and books. Books! even if I can’t sit still long enough to read them at the moment. So far I’m not writing much like I thought I would, but I’m also kind of okay with that right now. I can sing! I have a really horrible habit of saying I can’t and believing it when in fact, I can and usually, well. I miss acting. I miss creating. I miss the rehearsal room and the conversations it inspires. Although I love the feeling of lying in the sun, I love jumpers and beanies more. I can’t be alone for too long or I start getting sad. Or melancholic. Or heavy boots if you’ve read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, that’s the best way to describe it. I get heavy boots about life some days.
I’ve been writing letters lately that make me hold my heart up a little higher. That prompt photo searches through my archives evoking ridiculous all day/night smiles. That prompt proactive Google searches about doing things I’ve wanted to do forever, like see Gang of Youths.
I’ve been writing letters lately because I’ve been struggling to read like I used to and I’m trying not to watch so much Mad Men and Gilmore Girls, although the latter makes me so nostalgically happy and season five, episode five of Mad Men is possibly the best piece of television writing I’ve ever watched(!).
I’ve been writing letters lately because I’ve been journaling (almost) everyday for four months now and before that (almost) every other day while in Europe and that practice has made me think differently about what’s important to me.
At some point I chose to write in a specific order;
Firstly what I achieved today.
Simple dots points that aren’t in list form because lists have negative connotations for me, and can include any achievement. For example, biking, because I’ve only been doing it for a month and when I think about how far I’ve come in that month it really cheers me up.
Secondly, something I am grateful for.
Sometimes it’s simply wine, or more aptly red wine. Other times it’s wide windows or colder weather, having a home, possibilities of Asia. Often it’s family and friends and strangers who somehow make my day unbelievably wonderful.
Lastly, I write a few things that I might achieve tomorrow.
I’ve always been a list chick, but I realised how much pressure I put on myself when I have lists I tell myself must be crossed off. I feel guilt and disappointment when I can’t tick off washing because something else popped up, or worse, I’ll say no to something potentially wonderful because I have said list to tick off. If there’s no pressure in the way I’ve written the words, they may or may not happen. I get them out of my head and clear my mind for a little dreaming, then read approximately four minutes of my book before my eyes close without me and I’m rudely awakened by aforementioned book falling on my face.
I’ve been writing letters lately because I started titling each night’s entry and that spins them creatively in my mind. Gets the proverbial juices flowing.
I’ve been writing letters lately because my friends are far away and sometimes a phone call doesn’t cut it. Because I’m meeting people here that remind me of people I already love and that makes me miss them more.
I’ve been writing letters lately because we should tell people things like this all the time. We should tell ourselves too. Part of the reason I moved to Byron was to appreciate the good things, the simple things, and it’s become overwhelming.
I’ve been writing letters lately because letters are a beautiful thing to receive and to write. It is a blissful act to put words on a page because they are true and full of love. I take that love, rock it gently back and forth in my body for a while and throw it up and forward into tomorrow, each time taking a step not away from my old life but into my new one, my present one. My here today life, because it is bloody glorious and I’m spending so much of my glorious time looking back in love and while its very poetic and sometimes necessary, the forward momentum is starting to get some traction and I’m feeling like a self again.
The pieces of me are within grasping length. I can see them floating in different coloured bubbles, dancing to different fabulous songs and waiting to come together like the sweetest house party you’ve ever been to.
There are pieces of me floating on the sunny waves, I’ve finally got a board out and I’m ready.
I bloody love puzzles.
Juliet Sulejmani | June 21, 2016
Last week, Tyler the Creator, who is well known as a rapper, songwriter and producer amongst an array of other things, presented his first ever fashion show for his brand ‘GOLF’. At the show, he also announced his new footwear line called ‘Golf Lefleur’, meaning Flower Boy.
This is the second show of it’s kind, the first being Kanye West’s presentation of his last Yeezy Season Collection, where the designer not only presents their collection, but also performs for their guests.
For both shows, I was sitting front row, watching from my iMac monitor.
Guys, girls, some models and some not and a couple of younger kids, all of various backgrounds, body shapes and sizes were used to walk, ride or skate down the runway, which was designed as a skate park. Tyler explains that he is not following any rules, hasn’t ever attended a fashion show, but just loves creating and making clothes, and after collaborating with other brands, such as Vans, etc., he decided that it was time for him start his own brand.
The show was fun, happy and colourful. The collection is inspired by flowers, sportswear, and by LA which is where he lives, which you can tell from the vibrancy and summer feel of his clothing.
Tyler announced that his shoe line is still in sample stages however everyone who had purchased a ticket to his show would receive a free pair of shoes by the end of the year. Tyler also released his new song titled ‘Ego’ which sounded to me quite similar to Kanye West’s song New Slaves, which obviously was on purpose and quite fitting. Kanye was there to support his friend, along with many other celebrities and musicians.
I think Tyler’s show and Kanye West’s show, are very important markers in fashion history, because what they are doing is very different to what already exists in the industry. At a typical fashion show the designer merely peeps out right at the end, and quickly disappears back behind the curtain, whereas in this case, the designers (Kanye and Tyler) are used to being on stage. They are performers and great entertainers, and naturally they are comfortable with being front and centre, so this adds something extra to the overall experience. These designers also have quite a lot of creative control and freedom over the entire show, and they use this power to bring the audience even deeper into their story.
It is also important to take note that the designers have had to push through many boundaries, be it their success in other areas which binds them to only that arena, or their race, which if you notice, their aren’t many African American designers in the fashion industry. Even the type of clothing they’re creating is different from how people expect rappers to dress.
Another difference with Tyler’s fashion collection is that unlike other shows, where you have to wait pretty much a whole year for it to be released, Tyler’s is already available for pre-order on his website www.golfwang.com.
I like that the overall theme within Tyler’s collection portrays inclusivity and the everyday person, there is no discrimination just a celebration of life and the things you love. I am excited to see how these new designers will help to shape the industry in the near future.
Juliet Sulejmani | May 31, 2016
I literally could not put my reading books down in April. I just powered through each one and ended up finished eight books, which I think is the most I have ever read in one month.
May, on the other hand, has not been as successful in terms of book reading.
Here’s a list of all the books I read, with links included for the ones I have already written a post about.
The Post Office Girl by Stefan Zweig – CLICK here to read my review
How to be Danish by Patrick Kingsley – CLICK here to read my review
The Dry by Jane Harper – CLICK here to read my review
Why Fashion Matters by Frances Corner – CLICK here to read my review
The big 5 by Dr Sanjiv Chopra with David Fisher – CLICK here to read my review
The Reader on the 6.27 by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent – A kooky, typically French and romantic story. The protagonist, who reads random pages from books to the riders on the 6.27 train, finds a usb containing the diary entries of an unidentified girl. He then falls in love with this girl through her words and successfully tracks her down.
The Woman I wanted to be by Diane Von Furstenberg – This book is great value. You really get to know Diane, her life, her loves and her passions. She has some truly fantastic and enviable life experiences. DVF’s fashion story is also incredible. Diane goes through all the stages of her career and business, the beginning, the mistakes, the successes and all the in between parts.
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent – I honestly think part of the reason I haven’t read much this month, is because this book was so good. It’s still resonating within me. Burial Rites is Hannah Kent’s first novel and is based on a true story and set in Iceland in 1829. It is about Agnes Magnusdottir, a woman accused of murder for which her punishment is execution. You will have all the feels in this book. A much recommended read which will keep you eagerly turning the pages and googling ‘flights to Iceland’ at the same time.
Gracie Crowley | May 10, 2016
Matt Corby @ The Palais Theatre 30/04/16
My Matt Corby addiction has only grown since the release of his album Telluric earlier this year, seeing him at the Forum back in November of last year was just not enough to keep me satisfied. Thank whatever god or otherworldly creature there is that the Palais Theatre is still up and running. It has a certain atmosphere as you enter, the old-school vibe is emulated inside as you are shown to your seats by the wonderful staff while admiring the rather spectacular interior as it all sets the perfect mood for the evening ahead.
The opening act was none other than Vera Blue, who only a few weeks ago was featured on Triple J’s like a version. Her sound gave a Florence Welch meets Flume vibe and the pulsating electronic base of her music captivated you until she introduced an acoustic element throughout a few songs, providing warmth to the synthetic accompanying instruments. Her cover of the Gorilla’s ‘Feel Good’ was a definite crowd pleaser and her original tune ‘Turn’ was powerful to put it lightly.
Matt Corby came to the stage in almost perfect timing, opening with the first track from his latest Telluric, Belly Side Up. From then the entire performance commanded complete attention as he lured you in, built you up then broke you down with his entrancing voice and sound that mixes soul and blues with funky guitar riffs, flute solo’s and then of course the impressive use of his own voice as the backing for Monday. Those that reviewed Corby’s Telluric as somewhat cold and ‘lacking depth’ can happily swim in the warm ocean of depth that Corby’s performance provided. Having seen him perform a few times now I have noticed that he has become more confident, seeming to be more at home on stage after the first couple of songs. Corby replied jovially to the crowd’s yells of ‘I love you’ with ‘thanks mate’ and a little chuckle and he even returned for an encore this time. Yet even though he appears more confident Corby maintains a humble demeanour throughout his entire performance that cannot help but make you love him even more.
It is clear that Matt Corby has shaken the old image of former ‘guy from idol’ and has created a something that is both unique and personal. His sound and artistically written lyrics are more beautiful than the man himself. The vast amount of talent that his accompanying band possesses is impressive to say the very least and the Palais was the perfect venue for this performance. I truly cannot wait to see and hear what this impressive human does next.
Juliet Sulejmani | May 6, 2016
If you thought the exhibitions at Bendigo Art Gallery couldn’t get any better, well, here’s news for you.
Bendigo Art Gallery has just announced Dark Wonderland, which will be Toni Maticevski‘s first ever exhibition. With work spanning over Toni Maticevski’s 20 year career, including objects from his early practice to his most recent work, the Monaco Gown worn by Princess Mary to the King’s 80th birthday, and the commissioned gold lame gown worn by Jessica Mauboy for Eurovision 2014.
Maticevski is one of Australia’s most talented fashion designers, who is also recognised internationally for his designs, and has created a body of work that is diverse and focused on ideas and creative challenges.
Karen Quinlan (Director of the Bendigo Art Gallery), commenting on the exhibition, said: “Toni Maticevski has managed to morph, adapt and defy the boundaries of fashion, crossing the line that divides fashion design with fine art. For anyone who has ever dreamed of wearing a masterpiece, this is a must-see exhibition,”
The exhibition opens 13 August – 20 November 2016. Bendigo Art Gallery
Juliet Sulejmani | April 26, 2016
Ground Level, Temporary Exhibitions
5 March 2016 – 31 July 2016
Open 10am-5pm daily
I attended a seminar at the NGV last week titled Fashion is Art and heard from a lot of interesting people, who had a lot of interesting stories to share. I think it would be a shame to keep all that information to myself, so this is the first of a few posts that I will write on the seminar. I hope that you enjoy.
The first speaker was Paolo Di Trocchio who is the Curator of Fashion and Textiles at the NGV. Paola introduced the topic ‘Fashion is Art’ and explained the details behind the exhibition ‘200 years of Australian Fashion’ that she curated.
Paola explained that she was extremely excited to be able to have the opportunity to curate an exhibition that would encompass ‘200 years of the remarkable, growth, design and innovation in this country.’
The exhibition starts with the earliest known surviving dress from 1805, which is made out of Indian muslin and ends with a special commission by Dion Lee which was created only two months ago specifically for the exhibition.
It took just over two months for the exhibition to be curated and because this is the first major survey of Australian Fashion, they also needed to create an image that would represent the 200 years.
The NGV worked with Virgina Dowzer and Bronwyn Kidd to create the image, which has been illustrated by me at the top of this post. The image is set at the beach, Wilson’s Prom, because they saw ‘the beach as representative of the optimism of Australia, the freedom, the light, and colour, themes and ideas that are referred to in relation to Australian fashion.’
One piece was chosen from the various themes of the exhibition to represent the 200 years. The beach, the garments and models were photographed separately and then photoshopped together to create the image.
The Themes that you will see in the exhibition are:
1805: the earliest known dress and the beginning of a network of international trade
The Department Store: the shopping platform at the time, including Bright and Hitchcocks/Geelong, Farmer and Co, La Petite, Robertson and Moffat
Dressmakers and Tailors: the first makers, Miss Scott (Brisbane), Doak and Beatty (Sydney)
The Salon, from 1930s to the 1950s.: a more intimate shopping environment, represented by Lillian Wightman who opened Le Louvre and moved her boutique to the top end of Collins street, which is still referred to as The Paris End of Collins street
1960s: this part celebrates the mini dress through facets of 1960s, futuristic space age hippy movement, flower power and sports.
Flamingo park: 1973, Jenny Kee, opens her frock salon in the strand arcade
Art clothes: exhibition in 1980 in NSW, that places contemporary Australian fashion, previous to that it was large international fashion or historical fashion that was celebrated in the art gallery.
Fashion Design Council: which was an organisation founded in 1983 in order to nurture and support young talent and talent, e.g. Martin Grant, Christopher Graf, Jenny Banister.
Fashion Weeks: presents Australian fashion on the international stage, firstly with Colette Dinnigan who presents in paris, in 1995, then with the development like Australian fashion week in 1996 and the Melbourne Fashion Festival.
Contemporary Fashion: strong individuals and examples of Australian fashion, and purposely isolated on individual platforms so as to celebrate the unique signatures of our incredibly strong and incredibly talented contemporary Australian Designers.
Gracie Crowley | April 25, 2016
ANZAC Day this year marks the 101th anniversary of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps landing at Gallipoli, and the battle that ensued. To a wide number of Australians it means a great deal, therefore warranting a degree of respect that seems rare in our times. There has always been a range of differing views on the subject of this historic day. Over the years ANZAC Day has faced speculation, criticism and a wide variety of suggestions that have tried to take away from the respectful and commemorative occasion that it is.
War is a horrible occurrence in our world, where unspeakable acts occur. Human beings are not meant to kill one another, and there are horrific physical and psychological injuries that live with the survivors for the rest of their lives, if they are so lucky to survive. Every single person is allowed to have their own opinion on all things in this life. However perhaps an event that means such a great deal to a vast number of Australian and New Zealanders, that the negative comments and criticism that people make should be respectfully put aside for the day.
In our world right now, we have service men and women currently deployed in war torn areas worldwide. They sign up for service to protect their country, to help others, they sign up with the intention of doing what they perceive and what they have been taught is the right thing to do. Just as those young men did all those years ago, and women. For a human being to dedicate their lives to the service of the safety of others is an act that I personally think should be respected.
This ANZAC Day, like every other, I will wake up and I will remember those brave men and women at Gallipoli. I will remember the men and women who have given their lives in the service of others. I will remember the sacrifices they made and those that are still made today. I will remember the families of those they leave behind, the spouses who raise their children alone, and the children who grow up missing their parents. For those who care for the returned, and importantly the returned that do not survive life after war. I will put aside any personal thoughts I have on why they had to fight, of those that sent them to their deaths, and our the state of world right now to show respect to service men and women, past and present. I will commemorate the ANZAC spirit that people worldwide know and admire. I will do all of these things because it is important to remember the sacrifices people of our past made for our future.
I will think of my own Father who has dedicated his life to the RAAF (Royal Australian Air Force), who put the needs of his country above all else. I will remember for the same reason hundreds of thousands of others do, because it is important, even after all these years.
Lest We Forget.
Gracie Crowley | April 24, 2016
Prince Rogers Nelson left this world on the 21st of April 2016. To most of this world he was known as Prince, the flamboyantly extraordinarily talented vocalist and multi-instrumentalist. His music was a variety of funk, rock, rhythm, blues, psychedelic touches and pop. Luckily for our ears and eyes, since his debut album For You was released in 1978 our world has been graced with his magical sounds.
His passing is devastating for a great number of people who held him dear and for the music industry itself. It is a shattering moment for those he inspired and his adoring fans. The way in which he passed is irrelevant, and not something that should be a focus. The fact that he has passed is a cause for mourning, remembrance, and for celebrating a life and career of a beloved artist.
I will say this once, and once only. Fans are allowed to be sad and to mourn when their heroes die. People may not have known Prince personally, but they knew his music, and they followed his journey as an artist.
Fans of Prince connected to him through his music, through the sounds and lyrics he created and performed. I am not going to try to communicate what he meant to all of his fans and admirers, because that is a grossly impossible task.
You need only to scroll through Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr or Instagram to read tributes to him from people all over, read within the newspaper’s of the moment and watch on our television screens as we see an overwhelming amount of tributes pouring in.
It is clear that this human being meant a great deal to a vast amount of people and the sudden realization that he is now gone from this world at the young age of 57 is a sad and somber one at that. Reading certain tributes, like that of Harts and Frank Ocean amongst the vast sea of tributes that have appeared since his passing are both moving and tear jerking. It is clear that our world has lost a human that inspired, moved and entertained, who changed our world and the music industry for the better whilst paving the way for future artists to follow in his funky footsteps.
Rest assured that wherever he has moved onto, he has excellent company. This year has been a shocking and devastating one for the musical, literary and entertainment industry. From the end of last year with the loss of Lemmy, to this years loss of David Bowie, Alan Rickman, Merle Haggard, Frank Sinatra Jr, Harper Lee, and Glenn Frey amongst others. It is an odd and very heartbreaking experience for human beings to experience their heroes’ passing. It is as if we view them through a lens of immortality, we never give thought to an ‘end’ when it comes to them and I offer my sincere condolences to all that are touched by this saddening event.
I hope we do not focus on the way in which he left our world, yet imagine him dancing off into the distance through a bout of purple rain – leaving behind him a haze of purple (of course) that lingers over all who loved him.
In his time here he created a total of 39 studio albums that for years to come will be comfort, entertainment and a connection to him for all who love and admire him. This is not the end of his ‘purple reign’ as many are saying, as although he may be gone he leaves behind a legacy that will inspire and influence generations of future musicians, artists and fans that are gathering by various means worldwide to get through this thing called life.
Juliet Sulejmani | April 19, 2016
The Big 5, by Dr Sanjiv Chopra with David Fisher
PUBLISH DATE 10.05.2016
Health and Personal Development
Dr Sanjiv Chopra, Professor of Medicine & Faculty Dean, Director of Clinical Hepatology and Author
David Fisher , Author
Pan Macmillan sent me this book a couple weeks ago, it is a proof copy and will be published in May.
The big 5 things that Chopra says will enable you to live a longer and healthier life are:
This book explains why each of the above is good for you and also provides many examples of studies to prove the point.
I used to be concerned with drinking a lot of coffee, only because other people kept telling me it wasn’t good for me. However, thanks to Chopra and his research, I will be drinking coffee happily without any concern whatsoever.
After reading even just the first chapter, it felt like this switch in my mind flicked on to ‘activate’ and my focus became much sharper. This book gave me the foundation and inspiration I needed to make simple adjustments to live a healthier, longer life.
Notes and Quotes:
- “Worldwide, an estimated 2.25 billion cups of coffee are consumed every day”
- According to Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos “you haven’t had enough coffee until you can thread a sewing machine while it’s running.”
- “If it wasn’t for coffee, I’d have no identifiable personality whatsoever.” David Letterman
- “As Honore Balzac wrote almost two centuries ago, ‘As soon as coffee is in your stomach, there is a general commotion. Ideas begin to move…similes arise, the paper is covered. Coffee is your ally and writing ceases to struggle.'”
- “The best time to produce vitamin D is when your shadow is shorter than your height.”
- “…during prehistoric times if a person couldn’t move quickly and wasn’t strong, that person died.”
- “In 2838BC Chinese scholars listed the hazelnut as one of the five sacred foods that the gods had bestowed upon human beings.”
- “The goal of meditation isn’t to control your thoughts, it’s to stop letting them control you.”
- “Let me leave you with an ancient aphorism. You should meditate once a day, and if you don’t have time for that, you should meditate twice a day.”
- “Popular diets today are designed and marketed for profit.”