Sorry about the time gap, but I’ve been pretty busy. It’s been just over a year now since I decluttered, downsized and moved closer to the river in New Farm. With a freshly minted bathroom & some shiny new pieces of furniture, I can finally call this modest little modernist flat my home.
There are a few psychopaths/sociopaths/borderline personalities living in the building pictured here. I guess they add spice to the colour and movement of a diverse, lively community. There are probably some narcissists as well – aren’t they everywhere these days? Nevertheless, of course I treasure the majority – the warm, salt-of-the-earth people inhabiting this iconic building.
Recently I have also been housesitting. Funnily enough, I only felt truly settled in that familiar stately house on the hill when I encountered their local psychopath walking along the winding street. I used to see him regularly during other housesitting times in the past. This strange person spent years locked up for his dramatic attempted assassination of the admittedly pretty hopeless Labor leader Arthur Calwell, way back in 1966. Here’s a view from that lovely home – calming me down after seeing the would-be assassin outside.
SOME TASTY FILMS AT SFF
Here are a few highlights from my recent attendance at the Sydney Film Festival. ‘Never Look Away’ was a captivating tour-de-force – a brilliant German film, loosely based on the life of the great artist Gerhard Richter. Also the Agnes Varda retrospective was a treat for many, although given my time constraints this year, I was only able to see her last work which she completed not long before she died. This film, ‘Varda by Agnes’, depicted a very special filmmaker, warmly and even playfully discussing her craft to a rapt audience.
How could I resist relishing the new doco ‘Rolling Thunder Revue: a Bob Dylan story by Martin Scorsese’? This turned out to be a fairly complicated play on reality/truth/fiction – but of course Dylan has always been a trickster. The concert pieces were beautifully real, however, as was the breathtaking Coyote created and sung by Jodi Mitchell – this segment brought the house down. I had hoped for a film more like Scorsese’s wondrous classic, ‘The Last Waltz’ about Dylan and The Band, but still this one is definitely worth seeing, especially if you have ever liked Dylan, Joan Baez, Joni, Sam Shepard, Patti Smith, Allen Ginsberg etc etc. It is now available on Netflix. However, I’m glad that the other devotees and I saw it first on the big screen at the magical State Theatre.
And last but not least – I experienced the remarkable ‘Synonyms’, a film that probably would have been more comprehensible had I been stoned. I felt like I was stoned, in any case, as I left the cinema with my two young festival companions, who had also just relaxed and let this film wash over them. ‘Synonyms’ won the Golden Bear prize for best film at the Berlinale this year. As the synopsis says, this is an ‘intense, neurotic, uncompromising fever dream’. I hope it comes to BIFF later this year, so I can immerse myself in it again – and not just because the main actor is easy on the eye, spending much of the film completely naked…
APT9 – A BRISVEGAS BLESSING
Highlights abounded at the extraordinary Asia Pacific Triennial APT9, which I enjoyed over many months since late last year until a little while ago.
Here are some pics of some of my favourite parts of that huge exhibition at QAGOMA.
My next blog will be about my latest overseas jaunt, my new fashion statement, and more…!
Until then, au revoir.