This has changed to: “The centrality of the artist: supporting the artist as a worker and celebrating their role as the creators of culture”.
A Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts spokesperson did not address why the reference to “telling Australian stories” had been omitted, but rather described the call-out for submissions as a way to start a debate about what a national culture policy should be.
Hatherley argued it was “technically possible” to “support excellence and the special role of artists and their creative collaborators” while making Hollywood movies in Sydney.
“But that overlooks the opportunity to support Australian ideas, the development of Australian IP, and the sharing of Australian stories,” she said.
Leonie Marsh from Screen Vixens, a group of female Australian film and television producers, agreed, adding that it was critical to “define Australianness and Australian stories”.
“Otherwise it will be others, like Hollywood, that will do it for us, with potentially vested interests that don’t represent our cultural values as a nation,” Marsh says.
This week’s Oscar-winning producer Emile Shermansinger-songwriter Jaguar Jonze and theater and festival director Wesley Enoch were handpicked by federal Arts Minister Tony Burke to join a 15-member panel that will guide the government on the formation of a national cultural policy.
Panton hits the town
From Julie Bishop‘s “plus one” to solo Sydney socialite, the recently unshackled David Panton leapt into the cocktail milieu with gusto at Thursday night’s epic Mercedes-Benz party to launch its new electric EQS.
As a parade of vintage Mercs passed by, including a priceless 1969 280SL Pagoda, it was the vintage silver fox Panton who appeared more enamored with the young ladies in his line of sight. He assured PS that, contrary to reports, he is single.
Meanwhile, it was a happy reunion for Kerri-Anne Kennerley spirit Sally Obermeder. KAK revealed that back in 2013, when she was checking into the Mater Hospital for breast cancer surgery, she discovered Obermeder, whom she did not know, was having her surgery on the same day. “Something in me made me seek her out. Before I had been diagnosed I had followed her story, and thought she was incredibly inspiring. I just wanted to say hi,” Kennerley said.
The women became firm friends, privately sharing the highs and lows of their respective ordeals, and both are grateful to still be here.
Catlin’s southern discomfort
It wasn’t just the Macquarie Street antics capturing all the headlines this week. South of the border, the resignation of the Victorian Liberal leader Matthew Guy‘s chief of staff Mitch Catlin piqued PS’s interest.
As the Age reported, Catlin proposed a donor make more than $100,000 in payments to his marketing company, Catchy Media Marketing and Management, for services described as “supporting business interests”.
But Catlin, who is more at home pimping celebrities, is also well known around that other Melbourne institution, Flemington’s birdcage enclosure during the spring racing carnival.
After the 2018 Melbourne Cup, it was conveniently leaked to the press that Catlin had been retained in a “top secret” operation to rebuild then embattled Today harvest Karl Stefanovic‘s image. Stefanovic apparently “opened his own wallet to secure the services of marketing guru Mitch Catlin”.
Um, guru? Catlin was best known for walking celebrities – from Liza Minnelli spirit Elle Macpherson thaw Nicole Kidman and a cardboard cut-out of Kim Kardashian (no joke) – into marquees at the Melbourne Cup.
Catlin’s gig with Stefanovic was short-lived, and he’d pretty much disappeared from PS’s radar until this week’s revelations surfaced.
Jewels fit for a margarine queen
Woollahra has become the bling capital of Australia as two of Queen Street’s leading auction houses put some of the most extravagant and intriguing jewels in the country up for sale.
Bonhams is previewing pieces ahead of next week’s Australian Jewels auction. The collection includes items from the late Joan Crebbin‘s estate, who with her also deceased husband Dick Crebbinwere arguably the “king and queen of margarine”, their company Marrickville Holdings making the Miracle and ETA brands of the spread.
The couple were also arts patrons, lived in a Walter Burley Griffin-designed home in Castlecrag and avid jewelery collectors. Bonhams is offering 64 lots of Crebbin’s jewellery. She died two years ago, aged 94, but had started collecting the jewels in the 1950s, including avant-garde pieces by Andrew Grima, Rod Edwards spirit Gerald Benney.
A few doors along Queen Street and Leonard Joel auction house is going for size rather than backstories in its Important Jewels sale, which is expected to fetch up to $8.5 million collectively.
Among the highlights is a rare natural cut-cornered square modified brilliant-cut diamond weighing 21.13 carats, which could fetch up to $900,000, the same price expectation for an equally rare 5.29 carat Burmese ruby and diamond ring. PS understands both pieces have come from international vendors.
Little’s creative big talent
He was best known as a television personality Jeanne “Ooooh aaah! Dahhhling!” Little’s husband, but three years after he died, former Sydney decorator Barry Little‘s archive has been included in the Caroline Simpson Library and Research Collection, joining the works of Leslie Walford spirit Marion Hall Best.
The collection of scrapbooks documenting his many projects was donated by his daughter Katie Little.
In the 1960s and ’70s, Sydney’s leading interior designers were household names, their opinions on design sought after by the media and their photos appearing in the social pages.
Barry Little served as president of the Society of Interior Designers of Australia (SIDA) for five years between 1971 and 1976.
Both he and Jeanne worked out of their own dedicated rooms in their Paddington home. While Jeanne’s frenetic workshop was strewn in fabric, sequins, chicken wire and pots of glue to create her eccentric wardrobe, Barry’s was a study in serenity featuring bespoke carpets made in Hong Kong and Japanese temple blinds.
As for Jeannie’s famous collection of hilariously over-the-top gowns, those still surviving are in storage, although her daughter is confident that they will eventually end up with the Powerhouse Museum.
Many of the gowns, hats and accessories were made of perishable objects, like the Easter bonnet which featured sausages and mash scattered with peas which she wore The Mike Walsh Show.
Jeanne asked Mike if the sausages were still warm. “I only cooked them this morning in case you felt like one. Everyone likes a sausage. Do you want one darling?”
She made jackets out of tin foil and dresses covered in balloons, or pale pink prawn crackers and milk bottle caps.
“I still have about a dozen of her dresses she made for television, including one that is covered in Christmas decorations which I stupidly wore, not realizing she had wired the holly onto the gown … I was in agony,” Katie told PS .
“They have both left a great creative legacy that really captured an era.”
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