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This Week in The Can

HerCanberra Team

With an abundance of good weather, this week in Canberra is set to be a big with an equally abundant calendar of events. From the Canberra Felt Makers exhibition opening at The Q to RAW presents Sensory in Belconnen, fashionistas have plenty to delight in. For those who enjoy a good performance or two, then head along to the Belconnen Multicultural Arts Festival, Canberra Theatre or The Street Theatre for an incredible line up of live shows, stand ups and local music to choose from.

More importantly, this week also marks Reconciliation Week so be sure to take the time to reflect on what it means and perhaps take part in the free activities taking place in and around our city. Feeling charitable? Party for a cure with the Hatley family this Sunday or test your knowledge at one of the many trivia nights happening throughout the week. Channel your inner cheerleader and support your local team be it the Brumbies, Raiders or CBR Brave.

But whether you’re a foodie, market dweller, theatre goers and or even an art lover there’s always plenty to do this week in The Can!

YOU WON’T WANT TO MISS…

Capital Jazz Project

The Capital Jazz Project features a diverse range of international, national and ACT-based artists. The 2015 line-up includes: virtuoso piano-bandolim duo of Stefano and Hamilton (Italy/Brazil), jazz-rock icons The Bad Plus (USA), Grammy-award winning saxophonist Joe Lovano with Paul Grabowsky (USA/AUS), sublime vocals of Katie Noonan and Elixer (AUS), hard bop combo Hammerhead (AUS), master drummer Eric Harland (USA) and big band Divergence Jazz Orchestra(AUS). Kids can enjoy the jumpin’ jazz jive grooves of Jazzamataz and animation masterpiece The Adventures of Prince Achmed. The festival’s soul aim is nourishing top quality jazz music artists and audiences in a joyful manner. For a full program and prices visit The Street Theatre. On from Saturday 30 May until 8 June at The Street Theatre, Canberra City.

National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is celebrated across Australia each year between 27 May and 3 June. The dates commemorate two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey—the anniversaries of the successful 1967 referendum and the High Court Mabo decision. The week is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements and to explore how each of us can join the national reconciliation effort. To celebrate NRW, you can take part in these free activities:

Highlights Tour

Take a highlights tour of the National Portrait Gallery’s collection that focuses on the story of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Tours presented as part of Reconciliation Week at the National Portrait Gallery. On Wednesday 27 May to 3 June from 11.30am to 12pm.

Reconciliation Week: In the trenches – out of memory

Garth O’Connell, Assistant Curator Australian War Memorial and Guy Simon, actor, discuss the role of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander servicemen and women in the First World War and its exploration in the critically acclaimed stage production Black Diggers. On Sunday 31 May from 2pm at National Portrait Gallery.

Belconnen Multicultural Arts Festival

Head along to a multi-cultural arts festival with a variety of multi-cultural workshops and stalls from 2-6 pm and a concert from 7-9 pm. Workshops include Bollywood dancing, henna tattooing, international cooking, calligraphy, origami, card making, flower arranging, PNG initiation tattooing and table tennis. The concert features PNG performers, jazz band, hip-hop, Bollywood dancing. There is a creche available to help parents participate in the workshops. There will also be a number of different craft, clothing and food stalls. Fun activities for children are face painting, storytelling and jumping castles. On Saturday 30 May from 2pm to 9pm at Dallachy Street, Page.

Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow

The Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow is a comedy odyssey, bringing a raft of the world’s best comedy to Canberra for a raucous night out. Be prepared for this cast of comic travellers to have you belly-laughing. Every year audiences are wowed by these incredible line-ups, and this year is no exception. With a mix of local heroes and international stars as well as the hottest newcomer discoveries of the Festival, all your comedy bases are covered. This show is not suitable for children 15 or younger. Tickets from Canberra Ticketing. Booking fees may apply. On Friday 29 and Saturday 30 May from 7.30pm at Canberra Theatre Centre.

The Australian Ballet: Giselle

The Australian Ballet presents Giselle. Since its premiere in 1841, Giselle has captured imaginations and torn at hearts. Maina Gielgud’s acclaimed production for The Australian Ballet, with Peter Farmer’s atmospheric designs, perfectly captures the ballet’s dramatic blend of real-life passions and otherworldly apparitions.

Love conquers death in this ultimate romantic ballet. A village girl falls in love with a man who’s not all he seems. Discovering his deception, she dies of a broken heart. Transformed into a spirit, she battles to save her lover in a wood haunted by the cold, angry ghosts of jilted women. Tickets from Canberra Ticketing. Opens finishes Tuesday 26 May at Canberra Theatre Centre.

Kristy Webeck: Hoping for the best

Kirsty Webeck is bringing her debut Melbourne International Comedy Festival show to Canberra this weekend. Laugh until you cry as she takes you through her employment history, illustrating the reasons why she will probably never work again. Kirsty combines story-telling and observational humour to have audiences in stitches. On Monday 25 May at The Front Gallery, Lyneham. Tickets $23 single, $75 for group of four. Door open at 7pm for 7.30pm start.

Warlpiri Drawings: Remembering the Future

Warlpiri Drawings: Remembering the Future tells the story of an intriguing collection of artworks created by Warlpiri people in the 1950s. Glimpsed through the eyes of the collector as well as more recent Warlpiri interpretations, Warlpiri Drawings explores how drawing has been used to make sense of 80 years of monumental change, to picture life in the present and look hopefully towards the future. The exhibition is open until this Sunday 31 May 2015 at the National Museum of Australia.

Human Rights Arts & Film Festival

The Human Rights Arts & Film Festival (HRAFF) is a local arts organisation committed to uncovering human rights issues through film and art. Taking place in Melbourne from 7-21 May, with a national tour following, our diverse selection of film and art strives to inspire conversation and action about social justice. The curated selection of documentary films — including the powerful Australian feature documentary I Will Not Be Silenced and the timely and important Ivory Tower, aim to present the Canberra audience with a meaningful and memorable HRAFF experience. On until Monday 25 May at Palace Electric Cinema. Visit Palace Electric for sessions and times.

Ben Quilty: After Afghanistan

Ben Quilty toured Afghanistan in 2011 as the Australian War Memorial’s official war artist. His exhibition presents works of art developed from his experience.  “The portraits of these servicemen and servicemen move beyond the physical exterior of the subject to delve into emotions and experiences that lie below” Dr Brendan Nelson. On now until 27 May 2015 at the Australian War Memorial. Entry is free.

MARKETS, FESTIVALS & EXPOS

RAW Canberra presents Sensory

SENSORY will bring together 30+ local emerging artists spanning fashion, music, visual and performing arts, music and more for a one night extravaganza at the Belconnen Arts Centre. SENSORY is the third of six emerging arts showcases to be run by RAW Canberra in 2015 and this showcase is packed wall to wall with Canberra’s best emerging creatives. Tickets are $16.50 online or $20 at the door. On Friday 29 May with doors open from 7.30pm at Belconnen Arts Centre, Emu Bank Belconnen.

The Way We Wear Canberra Vintage Fair

The Way We Wear Vintage Fashion Fair is the vintage fashion lover’s dream and it’s back again this weekend for three days! Who knows what one can find hanging on a rack at this vintage event. You’ll certainly find plenty to take your breath away, even if it’s a Coco Chanel at a ridiculously low price. Fashionistas will find clothing and accessories, jewellery and collectibles and who knows, they may stumble upon the buy of the decade or a coat with a thick roll of US dollars in it but that is another story. Entry is $12 adult, $10 concession, $6 for 12 years and up. On 6pm to 9pm Friday 29 and 10am to 4pm Saturday 30 and Sunday 31 May at Albert Hall, Commonwealth Avenue.

Canberra Winter Gemcraft & Mineral Show

If you love sparkly gems and jewellery, collect rocks and minerals, facet or fossick, you’ll be sure to find something of interest at the Canberra Lapidary Club’s Winter Gemcraft and Mineral Show. A wide variety of rough and cut gemstones, jewellery, minerals, fossils, opals, crystals, beading supplies and lapidary equipment will be for sale. Members’ rock collections will be on display. There will be demonstrations on how to grind and polish rock into cabochons, and how to facet stones into sparkling gems. Entry cost is $5 adults, $10 family, $2 children/concession. The Show will be held in the Mallee Pavilion at EPIC (Exhibition Park off the Federal Highway, Canberra) on Saturday 30 May and Sunday 31 May from 10.00am to 5.00pm.

Old Bus Depot Markets

Canberra’s national award winning indoor Sunday market focuses on the talent and creativity of regional arts and craftspeople. Discover 200 stalls within a fabulous old industrial building offering unique handcrafted items, gourmet take home food, regional wines, and freshly ground coffee. Visitors can browse all kinds of items including funky lamp shades, tea cups and saucers, retro decorative art, antique jewellery, china and art glass, silver, linens and restored pieces.

The Old Bus Depot Markets are easy to access, have ample free parking and a wide range of food stalls to enjoy a multicultural meal, a coffee or a quick bite to eat – while watching talented musicians and taking in the hustle and bustle of the markets. On every Sunday from 10am to 4pm on Wentworth Avenue in Kingston.

Capital Region Farmers Market

Visit the largest regional markets in the Southern Tablelands—the Capital Region Farmers Market! Be tantalised by fruits, vegetables, plants, flowers, seafood, cakes, condiments, meats, cheeses and more. Fresh produce reflects the exciting seasonal characteristics and diversity of the region providing opportunity for you to learn more about the food you’re eating and the region it comes, and discuss what you’re buying with the growers. On every Saturday from 7.30am to 11.30am at Exhibition Park on Flemington Road.

FOOD & WINE

Olive Harvest Celebration

Celebrate the olive harvest at Grandma’s at the Farm, formerly Grandma’s Little Bakery! Explore the award-winning Fedra Olive Grove with free guided tours of the boutique factory. See production of olive oil and olives. Don’t miss this fun day for the whole family. Free activities throughout the day! Olive Tours run at 9.30am, 10.30am, 11.30am, 1.30pm and 2.30pm. There will be a Kids Cookie Baking Class at 10am (bookings essential) and a chef’s demonstration at 12pm along with plenty of tastings and friendly sheep to meet. Enjoy breakfast, brunch, or lunch while soaking up the view, atmosphere and music. Order delicious homemade food. Try unique olive dishes made especially for the celebration. On Sunday 31 May from 9am to 4pm at Grandma’s at the Farm, 5796 Federal Highway, Collector.

Regional Achievement & Community Awards Launch

Do you know someone in your community who has achieved something great and deserves recognition?  The purpose of the NSW/ACT Regional Achievement and Community Awards is to encourage, acknowledge and reward valuable contributions and outstanding achievements in regional and rural areas. The focus of the awards will be small to medium size businesses, organisations involved in promoting the community through events and tourism, individuals providing leadership and innovation, those contributing to the agricultural industry, businesses and volunteers within the Aged Care sector and community groups enhancing the social, economic, commercial and environmental prosperity of their region. On Thursday 28 May from 10.15am to 11.30am at the National Press Club, Barton.

Making Non-Dairy Milk Workshop

Learn how to make non-dairy milks with Evangeline Lam of nilbarcodefood.com. Evangeline will demonstrate how to turn almonds, cashews and coconut into delicious dairy-free concoctions and how to make cashew nut cream cheese. Bring along a jam jar or two to take home some nut milk samples, and some nut meal. Includes all ingredients. Bookings available by phoning (02) 6248 0885. On Saturday 30 May from 10am to 12pm at Canberra Environment Centre, Acton.

Jane Grover: Wholefoods chef and author

Jane Grover: Wholefoods chef and author is also a home cook, a wife, mother and a dynamic presenter. This live cooking presentation is sure to leave you inspired and empowered to adjust your own cooking and eating habits to obtain a healthier lifestyle.  Jane is passionate about cooking with home or locally grown, seasonal, organic and biodynamic produce. She juggles her life with humour, wisdom and determination, educating others on the value of eating whole foods and understanding where our food comes from. Tickets $15 and available through C3 Church or phoning (02) 6241 7000. On Saturday 30 May from 2pm to 4pm at C3 Church Watson.

COMMUNITY

MS Walk & Fun Run 2015

The MS Walk + Fun Run is an enjoyable, healthy way to join family, friends and other enthusiastic supporters in a fun day out on a crisp Autumn morning. Join thousands of participants for a warm-up at Rond Terraces in Commonwealth Park before setting off on a scenic 5km or 10km course around beautiful Lake Burley Griffin in the nation’s capital. Registrations needed online at MS Walk website. Run warm up at 8.30am for a 9am start. Presentations at 10am. Walk warm up at 10.25am for a 10.30am start. On Sunday 31 May at Rond Terraces, CommonwealthPark.

Kai Hatley’s Family Fun Day

The Kai Hatley Foundation was established to raise funds and much needed awareness for Mecp2 Duplication syndrome, a rare genetic condition. Earlier this month we brought you the story of Kai Hatley and his 5th birthday celebrations taking place this Saturday. You’re invited to join in the family fun and party for a cure for all monies raised going to the very exciting and progressive research to find a treatment for Kai and many others like him. There will be jumping castles, a giant inflatable slide, glitter tattoos, face painting, reptile displays, a sausage sizzle, a coffee and pastry van (My Sweet Alice), Moonlight bus rides, a dance party and so much more! Join in the fun on Sunday 31 May from 11am to 2pm at King Edward Terrace Parkes.

World Environment Day Dinner

The Conservation Council’s major fundraiser, the World Environment Day Dinner, will be held Saturday 30 May at the National Arboretum Canberra. Catering is by the renowned Janet Jeffs and Ginger Catering and the MC will be David Pope, Canberra Times editorial cartoonist. The guest speaker for the dinner is Judy Horacek – Woman with Altitude. Judy is a freelance cartoonist, illustrator and writer. Her work has appeared in The Australian, The Canberra Times and The Age, and can be seen on fridges and toilet doors all over the world. Her cartoons often reflect her interests in feminism, the environment and social justice. She is currently published weekly in The Age, and is also resident cartoonist for a number of small magazines. Seven collections of her cartoons have been published. Judy also creates children’s picture books – both on her own and in collaboration with Mem Fox. Together Mem and Judy created the instant children’s classic ‘Where is the Green Sheep?’ Tickets available through Conservation Council or phoning (02) 6229 3203. On Saturday 30 May from 7pm to 10pm at National Arboretum Canberra.

Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea

We all know someone who has been affected by cancer in some way, whether it be family, friend or co-workers. This Thursday Australia will host the biggest morning tea at various venues in and around the country. Coles Manuka is one of them and will be helping to raise money for the Cancer Council’s vital work in the community. On Thursday 28 May from 11am to 5pm at Coles Manuka, Manuka.

MaryMead’s Glitz & Glamour Ball

Enjoy a fabulous 3 course meal and dance to the sensational tunes of local band Hitparade at MaryMead’s Glitz & Glamour Ball. There will be a silent auction, raffles, lucky door prizes and more. All this for just $135 per person. Book your table of 10 today on (02) 6162 5825. On Friday 29 May from 6.30pm for a 7pm start at Canberra Southern Cross Club, Woden.

Steve Dozpot Annual Charity Trivia Night

Steve Doszpot MLA is holding an annual Charity Fundraising Trivia Night in support of Alzheimer’s Australia ACT. Join us for a wonderful evening of prizes, trivia, auctions and entertainment. The cost is $60 pp or $500 for a table of 10. Book your tickets on (02) 6255 0722. On Friday 29 May from 7pm to 11pm at Hellenic Club, Phillip.

Celebrate Life, Talk about Death Trivia Night

Are you a trivia fanatic? Palliative Care Australia are hosting trivia nights across Australia for National Palliative Care Week on Friday 29 May. The theme: Celebrate Life, Talk about Death. Tickets available through phoning (02) 6232 4433. On Friday 29 May from 7pm to 11pm at Labor Club, Belconnen.

Big Kids Games Day

Early Bird Tickets are $75.00 which includes a Mega Super Fun Pack of Food, Action Bus ride from Zierholz to the City Bus Interchange at the conclusion of the event, four hours of drinks (including spirits!!), new friends, loads of games and tonnes of laughter! Invite your friends, family, co workers, anyone and everyone is welcome to the best & biggest games day! (Please note this is an 18+ event). Tickets available online through Ticketebo.com.au. On Saturday 30 May from 5pm to 10pm at Zierholz, University of Canberra Bruce.

OUTDOORS & TOURS

Gallery Tours: All the fall highlights

See highlights of the exhibition All that fall: Sacrifice, life and loss in the First World War on a daily tour.  All that fall: Sacrifice, life and loss in the First World War is the National Portrait Gallery’s contribution to the Anzac Centenary. On now until 26 July at National Portrait Gallery.

Mt Stromlo Observatory May Public Night

Mount Stromlo Observatory in conjunction with the Canberra Astronomical Society invite you to the May public observation night. See the rings of Saturn, the craters of the moon and beautiful star clusters and nebulae. On the night, there will be talks by astronomers from Mt. Stromlo Observatory and observations on several telescopes. In the event of cloudy weather, star gazing will be cancelled but the talks will occur regardless of the weather. Check the weather using the Mt. Stromlo all-sky camera on their website. Warm clothing is recommended.

FAMILY

The Australian Ballet: Dancer’s Class on Stage

Get to know some of the talented and passionate dancers of The Australian Ballet! In this unique in-theatre event hosted by one of the dancers, you’ll listen in on a special question and answer session with Telstra Ballet Dancer Award nominees about their life, dedication and love for the art form. Discussions will be followed by watching full company class live on stage.  Don’t miss this rare insight into life inside the ballet, while The Australian Ballet are touring Giselle in the nation’s capital. Suitable for ages 10 and above. Tickets from Canberra Ticketing — adults $20; children $15. On Monday 25 May from 10am to 11.45am at Canberra Theatre Centre.

Little Griffins @ Brick by Brick

The National Capital Exhibition presents an exciting FREE and HANDS ON programme for toddlers and pre-schoolers. Little Griffins includes songs, activities and lots of Duplo™ construction fun as a gentle introduction to the wonders of the National Capital. Discover Brick by Brick on the last Friday of each month. On Friday 29 May from 10am to 11am at National Capital Exhibition, Barrine Drive Parkes. Children need to be accompanied by an adult.

Perception Deception

Does your brain play tricks on you? Is one person’s reality the same as yours? Answer these questions and more with the Perception Deception exhibition at Questacon. Surprise your senses and challenge your mind with over 60 hands-on and multimedia exhibits featuring perceptual test and illusions.  This family-friendly exhibition reveals how our brains process information from our senses to form our perception of the world around us. Sometimes all is not as it seems! On now until 30 September 2015. For entry prices visit the website.

Questacon

There’s always heaps for people of all ages to do at Questacon – check out their list of events here.

National Dinosaur Museum Weekend Tours

The National Dinosaur Museum holds tours every weekend. Join one of their expert staff to experience a journey through time. Take your camera, your friends, those burning dinosaur questions and join the knowledgeable staff for a fun and educational tour suitable for all ages. Tours are free with admission. Tours are 30-minutes and run every weekend at 11am, 12pm, 2pm and 3pm until 27 December.

Play Up

Play Up pokes its tongue out at the idea that museums are hands off. Stand up, muck up, dress up, make up, think up and step up in a fabulous space that has turned the traditional idea of what goes on in museums completely on its head. In Play Up it is visitors to the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House (MOADOPH) who are the curators – the exhibition has been developed with children and celebrates the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Play Up celebrates the important role children have in the cultural life of our communities. Most importantly Play Up is a place for fun. At the MOADOPH and open from 9am to 5pm daily until June 2015.

Family Space

The National Portrait Gallery has something for everyone to enjoy this school holidays in the Portrait Gallery Adventure Family Space. Explore the lives of Australia’s greatest adventurers through interactive art carts, dioramas and dress ups. Make your own portrait that expresses your spirit of adventure using fun art materials and the photo booth. All materials provided and free for all to enjoy! From 11am to 4pm daily.

Leap into your local library

Your local library is a treasure trove…not only are there free books and resources, there are regular amazing events! Giggle & Wiggle with your little ones (up to 2 years) and help them learn through language play using interactive rhymes, songs, games and stories. Looking to improve your English and make new friends, then head along to your local library for one of the informal English conversation groups. For more events and info check them out here.

HEALTH & WELLBEING

Add balance to your life Workshop

Do you struggle to balance your life? Your cheque book? Your relationships? Your diet? Your health? Your weight? Do you tend to go over the top…above and beyond….and then tend to crash and burn not long after that? Join Human Happiness in a FREE workshop to discover some very simple techniques that can turn all of these issues around. The evening is all about “2’s”…people who have a 2 in their numerology, or a 2 in their birth date. And the primary Life Purpose and life challenge for 2’s is “Balance and Co-operation”. Having studied Numerology for many years and having combined these studies with her training in yoga, mudras (hand and body gestures), pranayam (breathing techniques), affirmations, light and sound therapy and many more disciplines, Kylie Blacksell will bring to you a tool box that perfectly matches your issues and ailments. On Wednesday 26 May from 6.30pm at 12/121 Hawker Place, Hawker.

Kick your cravings Workshop

Calling all chocoholics… bakery bingers… super sweet tooths… coffee addicts… slaves to salty food… spice seekers… dairy addicts… peanut nuts and cravers of other fine foods! Discover the deeply hidden origin of your cravings and how to alleviate them in this three hour workshop with Human Happiness. Kylie Blacksell will share with you specific techniques from yoga, mudras (hand and body gestures), pranayam (breathing techniques), affirmations, light and sound therapy and many more disciplines to bring to you a tool box that perfectly matches your cravings issues. Bring with you a note pad and pen, a pillow to sit on (there are some chairs available if you prefer), comfortable clothing and a gold coin for supper. On Thursday 28 May from 6.30pm to 9.30pm at 12/121 Hawker Place, Hawker.

SPORT & LEISURE

Brumbies v Bulls

See the Brumbies take on the Bulls at GIO Stadium Canberra. With the Brumbies on their home ground, you know they’ll be out for a win. Get along and cheer on your favourite team. Widely regarded as the world’s toughest provincial rugby tournament, the Super Rugby competition pitches the best players from New Zealand, Australia and South Africa together with five teams from each conference fighting for the win. Tickets from Ticketek. Transaction fees apply. On Friday 29 May with a 7.40pm kick off at GIO Stadium.

CBR Brave v Melbourne Ice

It’s all happening this weekend at Phillip Ice Skating Centre as the CBR Brave take on Melbourne Ice in a double header clash on both Saturday and Sunday.Last weekend’s win bumped the Brave boys up into the Top Four on the Australian Ice Hockey League ladder, so they’ll be looking to maintain this when they hit the ice. Catch all the action at Phillip Ice Skating Centre when the puck drops at 5.30pm on Saturday 30 and 5pm Sunday 31 May. Tickets available online now or catch the live stream at ascensionsports.tv.

Canberra Raiders v Brisbane Broncos

Be a part of the action at GIO Stadium for a Canberra Raiders home match. See them play the Broncos in Round 12 of the competition. Nothing beats being part of the crowd at a live rugby league match, especially when the Raiders are playing on their own turf! Tickets will be on sale from Ticketek. Transaction fees from $4.95 per transaction apply. On Saturday 30 May with gates open from 3pm for a 5.30pm kick off at GIO Stadium.

WORKSHOPS & TALKS

One-day Intensive DLSR Photography Course

See Canberra through the lens with National Photo Training College. Enjoy an outdoor experience learning how to use your camera and taking photos while you’re in the nation’s capital. Choose from beginner or advanced classes for the relevant tuition.  Small classes with a professional photographer ensure plenty of personal attention to advance your knowledge. Handout notes provided. DSLR1 is a beginner class where you’ll enjoy Old Parliament House and nearby grounds.
DSLR2 is the advanced twilight class, ideal for people wanting to shoot landscapes and long exposure near Lake Burley Griffin on manual exposure. Over 15s welcome. Group discounts available. The DSLR1 workshop is $169 and DSLR2 is $89 with bookings available online or phoning (02) 9560 0077. DSLR1 is on from 9.30am to 3.30pm Friday 29 or 9.15am to 3.30pm Saturday 30 May, and DSLR2 from 4pm to 7.30pm Friday 29 May.

Evolution of an Exhibition: Peter Haynes Talk

Join guest-curator, Peter Haynes, one of Australia’s highly-acclaimed curators and commentators of Australian ceramics, who will share his knowledge and expertise in an informal talk on the evolution of an exhibition – from the background of curating a major exhibition along the journey to its final execution. With over 35 years’ experience in curating, writing and arts administration, Peter will provide unique insights into his most recent project, Janet DeBoos: A Survey – a major component of the Australian Ceramics Triennale, hosted in Canberra during July 2015. On Friday 29 May from 4pm to 5pm at Craft ACT, London Circuit Civic.

Canberra (Ainslie) Toastmasters

Canberra (Ainslie) Toastmasters is conducting a public speaking and presentation skills workshop on aspects of effective communications at Ainslie Football Club, Wakefield Avenue, Ainslie from 5.30pm to 7pm on Tuesday 26 May. Free for visitors.

Intro to Natural Building

Strawbale, mud brick, lime render; these are some of the things you could learn about at our natural building workshop on Tuesday the 26th of May. The Canberra Environment Centre is teaming up with Greg, of Greenhill Farm, to bring you a workshop on natural building.
Come and find out why many architects are turning to the natural building method when designing their buildings. Efficient, inexpensive and sustainable; naturally built houses are easier to both heat and cool, maintain a superior indoor air quality and are free from toxic off gases produced by treated woods. Come along to learn the skills necessary to build a home that is both kind on the environment and a pleasure to live in. On Tuesday 26 May from 6pm to 8pm at Canberra Environment Centre, Cnr Lawson Crescent and Lennox Crossing, Acton.

National Gallery of Australia talks and workshops

The National Gallery of Australia has an extensive program of talks and workshops run in conjunction with their current exhibitions. Hear about local and international artists or specific techniques. Be inspired by the greats and create your own artworks. Talks and workshops cater for a range of different age groups. For full details visit the NGA website.

STAGE & FILM

Hercules

A husband returned from war…  A wife wracked by suspicions…  Will they survive?
Canberra Choral Society’s annual Handel oratorios in The Playhouse have quickly become a highlight of the local cultural calendar. 2015 CCS brings Handel’s extraordinary study in marital jealousy, Hercules — a rarely-heard ‘musical drama’, with deeply human characters and choral writing that is both urgent and monumental. The conquering Hercules returns from battle bringing the captive daughter of his defeated enemy. Freeing the beautiful princess, he ignites the suspicions of his wife… Tickets available through Canberra Ticketing. On Saturday 30 May from 7.30pm at The Playhouse, Canberra Theatre.

The Bad Plus (USA)

The Bad Plus, New York’s genre-bending iconoclasts of jazz-rock, appear as part of Capital Jazz Project. With a joyously subversive approach that transcends category, The Bad Plus detonate musical genres and expand all expectations of what an apparently standard jazz piano trio can achieve. Incorporating elements from several centuries of musical composition, this trio have garnered a cult following with their devastatingly original compositions and transformative covers of anything from Stravinsky to Black Sabbath, Blondie to Radiohead. Each a master improviser in their own right, they deliver a creative chemistry and imagination unparalleled in contemporary jazz. Tickets $40 concession and $45 adult from The Street Theatre online. On Sunday 31 May from 7.30pm at The Street Theatre.

Rice

Nisha is a young and precocious corporate hotshot working as the Executive Officer of Golden Fields, Australia’s biggest rice company. She is close to sealing a confidential contract with the Indian government that would see the company taking over India’s rice distribution system. At the other end of the building, Yvette is a 64-year old cleaner. Their lives are about to entwine in ways they could never have expected. Rice is part of First Seen,The Street’s program of new works-in-progress.Tickets $15 online. On Sunday 31 May from 3pm at The Street Theatre.

No Turning Back

Introducing Warren Miller Entertainment’s highly anticipated 65th ski and snowboard film; No Turning Back. Take a journey with Warren Miller to the deepest of destinations, from Niseko, Japan to the top of Greece’s Mount Olympus, and the edge of Alaska’s Chugach. Buy tickets from the Warren Miller website. On Sunday 31 May from 5pm at Dendy Cinemas, Canberra City.

All This Living!

A contemporary, solo piece of theatre created in Canberra, All This Living! uses humour mixed with home truths and leaps of imagination to tell Jay’s story. Anti-ageing ads and her invisibility have worried Jay and she is searching for answers. What is this ‘third stage’ of her life? ‘Retiree’ but from what…life? The Caillech and the Furies may help and have some answers to her quest. Her wrinkles and crinkles hold secrets and stories and she’s not a fossil. Guerilla grannies have their piercing eyes on those Anti-Aging ads and her head is buzzing. Join Jay on her journey. Open until Sunday 31 May at The Street Theatre. Visit the website for show times.

Audi Festival of German Films

With a collection of films highlighting a robust and very creative film industry in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the Audi Festival of German Films is a spectacular assemblage. The variety of movies is most amazing, ranging from thrillers, alpine Western to comedies and thigh-slapping Kraut pleasers. Head along to Palace Electric Cinemas until Sunday 31 May to catch the very best of German filmmaking from arthouse films to massive European box office hits. Tickets and session times available here.

Drowning in Veronica Lake

Drowning in Veronica Lake may not be the warmest of titles it does throw a light on what life can be like behind the glitz and glamour of a Hollywood lifestyle. So often people have fantasies about how movie stars live. But the consequences of their fame often have a tragic ending. So many talented actors are tormented by egos that are as fragile as snowflakes. Opening 30 May at Q Theatre, Queanbeyan. Tickets available here

MUSIC, DANCE & MORE

Local folk rock group, We are Brother Be were the first original Canberra band to supply halftime entertainment at GIO Stadium and have played at 2015 Enlighten Festival. They’ve recently recorded the their first EP Gone and Gone and will be launching it this week at the Transit Bar. We are Brother Be want you to join the party and help them celebrate at 8pm Saturday 30 May.

Selby & Friends – The Czech Connection

Selby and Friends – The Czech Connection features Andrew Haveron on violin, Timo-Veikko Valve on Cello and Kathryn Selby on piano. Selby and Friends’ ninth season offers another extraordinary collaboration between Australian and international artists who come together to create memorable performances of beloved masterpieces, large and small. Thriving in a festival-like atmosphere, Selby and Friends concerts create a strong and intimate connection with the audience. This allows the performers to share not only their brilliance and flair but also warmth, humour and personal musical experiences. For more information visit Selby and Friends. On Monday 1 June from 7.30pm at James O. Fairfax Theatre, National Gallery of Australia.

Paraguayan Harp and Piano Concert

Drill Hall Gallery Director Terence Maloon will welcome Esteban Bedoya, the Paraguayan Chargé d’Affaires, to introduce the accomplished Paraguayan harpist Marcelo Rojas, accompanied by the Australian pianist James Huntingford. Head to the Drill Hall Gallery to enjoy this unique Paraguayan concert in an uplifting art setting. Savour some wine and cheese at the conclusion of this delightful evening. On Wednesday 27 May from 6pm to 8pm at Drill Hall Gallery.

 

Northern Lights – Griffyn Ensemble

In November 2014 Griffyn Director Michael Sollis joined astronomer Fred Watson in the Arctic Circle in search of the Northern Lights. The resultant composition tells a magical tale of the aurora in a Snow White-esque land of ice and twilight. The premiere performances closely reflect the extraordinary use of light in the ‘James Turrell: a retrospective’ exhibition at the National Gallery of Australia. Tickets start at $10 for child through Griffyn EnsembleOn 6pm Saturday 30 and 2pm Sunday 31 May at National Gallery of Australia.

Love Blossoms in May – Art Song Recital

Art Song Canberra presents a recital by Alexander Knight (baritone) and Kimberley Steele (piano) at Wesley Music Centre.The exciting Knight-Steele duo has been working together for five years now, bringing together a balance of lush and fiercely beautiful repertoire. This concert will feature Robert Schumann’s Dichterliebe, Gerald Finzi’s Let Us Garlands Bring, repertoire by Samuel Barber and others. Enjoy an indulgent afternoon and fall in love again with a sumptuous world of sound. Tickets available at the door. Price includes admission, program and light refreshments. Tickets begin at $15 and are available through Art Song Canberra or phoning (02) 6286 7373. On Sunday 31 May from 3pm at Wesley Music Centre, Forrest.

Capital Jazz Project Opening Night: Gian Slater

Gian Slater’s new work is inspired by two of Australia’s most singular improvisers whose musical identities are inextricably linked to their communities. Andrea Keller and Simon Barker join Gian to form an improvising trio, surrounded by the primal, world-less vocalisations of vocal ensemble Invenio, creating a new work where the personal and communal are indivisible, intertwined and mutually inspiring. A single musical identity emerges from an ensemble sound; at once unique and indivisible from its surroundings. Slater shares the Capital Jazz Project’s opening night double bill with Miroslav Bukovsky.Tickets $40 available through The Street Theatre. Ticket price includes both performances. On Saturday 30 May from 8pm at The Street Theatre.

Capital Jazz Project Opening Night: Miroslav Bukovsky – Black + White

Black + White is a brand new work by Miroslav Bukovsky, one of Australia’s leading jazz trumpeters and award-winning composer/arrangers. The work transcribes Canberra’s unique environment of bird song, changing seasons, cold light, and isolation into adventurous aural cartography. Birds sing and inspire each other, as do Miroslav’s class musicians Mike Price, David Pereira, John Mackey, Eric Ajaye, and Mark Sutton with Michael Norris on sound design. Bukovsky shares the Capital Jazz Project’s opening night double bill with Gian Slater. Ticket price includes both performances. Ticket price includes both performances.Tickets $40 available through The Street Theatre.  On Saturday 30 May from 8pm at The Street Theatre.

Carillon Bells Concert: Looking at Nature

“What I see in Nature is a grand design that we can comprehend only imperfectly.” Albert Einstein.  The National Carillon celebrates its 45th birthday this year and for the first time it has been invited to perform three times per day as part of the Canberra International Music Festival. The community will hear the beautiful sounds of the bells in the early morning though to the early evening (8.30am-9am; 12.30pm-1pm and 5pm-5.45pm). The whole team of carillon players will be performing during the 10 days of the festival. Join honorary Sydney Carillonist, Edward Grantham looking at nature in animals and flowers as the bells chime the following music: Carnival of the Animals – C. Saint-SaënsFlowers in Gilbert and SullivanAnimal SongsFlower Power, and Carillon Composition.

The Front Room

Explore Australia’s TV, radio and music collection at your leisure in the National Film and Sound Archive’s latest screen and sound experience in Acton – The Front Room. Discover the history of sound, music and broadcast in comfort. Listen to radio broadcasts on a 1950s radiogram, watch classic TV in the lounge space or play CDs on one of the listening posts. Whether you’ve got five minutes or five hours, there’s always something to see, hear or do in The Front Room. Free entry. Open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm until 24 December at National Film and Sound Archive.

No Lights, No Lycra

There is no light, no lycra, no teacher, no steps to learn, no technique, just free movement. NLNL is a space where you can completely let go, shake out the stresses of the week, and lose yourself in the music and the physicality of your body. NLNL is a daggy, non-pretentious place to completely be yourself.

NLNL takes place in two locations across Canberra: Monday nights from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at Mugga Mugga Scout Hall in Red Hill, and Wednesday nights from 7.30pm to 9pm at St John’s Anglican Church Hall in Reid (corner of Constitution Ave and Anzac Park West).

Lots of free onsite parking available, and admission still just $5 on the door.

Vinyl Lounge at NFSA

The popular Vinyl Lounge is back for 2015 at the National Film and Sound Archive. Join other vinyl lovers for nibbles then spin the turntables with your favourites records from 5.30pm. The NFSA’s Vinyl Lounge is on the first Friday of every month and is the perfect way to end the day (and working week). Reminscent of record clubs of the 1970s, enjoy a diverse selection of pop, rock, folk, world, funk and lounge music from the Golden Age of vinyl. Bring your own LPs and groove into the Vinyl Lounge. On the first Friday of each month from 5pm.

Weekly Dance Party for the Over 30s

30+ Dance Event will be hosting weekly Dance Parties every Saturday night at The RUC where you will be provided with an entralling and relaxed atmosphere to meet new people at your own leisure. A fun, safe and comfortable atmosphere to dance, meet new or other likeminded persons, romance, flirt or socialise and make friends. These are popular weekly Saturday night evens and the ideal night out for fun-loving socialable 30+s with pulsating music from the 60s, 70s, 80, 90s plus much more. Visit 30 Plus Dance Event for details. On every Saturday from 8pm onwards at The RUC, Turner and $20 per head.

Live Local Music

This post isn’t long enough to list all the various gigs around town, but if you’re into live music, we heartily suggest you check out what’s on offer at The Phoenix, Transit Bar, The Front, The Abbey, and BMA’s gig guide.

ART

Landscapes of Our Country

In collaboration with Ernabella Arts, Jaktman Gallery presents an exhibition of dynamic new work, featuring paintings by Thariya (Nungalka) Stanley, Renita Stanley, Imiyari (Yilpi) Adamson, Tjunkaya Tapaya and Atipalku Intjalki. The exhibition is an energetic collection of paintings representing the artist’s stories of their landscape and sacred places. The vibrant colours of the paintings represent the changes in the landscape as they travel and camp with their family. The paintings embody the strong connection and sense of place that the Pukatja people have with the land. Open until 25 May at Front Gallery, Lyneham.

100 Years of Kingston Power House

Canberra Glassworks invites you on a special tour of Canberra’s oldest public building, Kingston Power House, which turns 100 years old in 2015. Designed by John Smith Murdoch, this building was the heartbeat of Canberra in its early years. It powered the development of this built city, housed its telecommunications system and provided employment for many people across the region. Bookings essential on (02) 6260 7005 or email [email protected]. On until 6 June 2015.

Bespoke

As part of DESIGN Canberra, Craft ACT: Craft + Design Centre is thrilled to partner with the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House (MoAD), to bring you an exciting exhibition Bespoke: Design for the people. In this stunning exhibition, six Australian craft and design practitioners have created new works that reflect and respond to the iconic designs of the original furniture at Old Parliament House. Each artist was given unprecedented access to the rooms and collections, and the freedom to create a personal response. Informed by their own artistic backgrounds, each artist considered notions of political perspective, change, accountability and power in their pieces. The result is a thought-provoking collaboration between design, creativity and Australia’s political history. Artists include Canberra artists Jennifer Robertson, Niklavs Rubenis, Julie Ryder, Caren Florance, in collaboration with Melinda Smith; and Sydney-based artist Cecelia Heffer. The exhibition will run until November 2015. To view the full DESIGN Canberra program of events visit their website.

James Turrell: A Retrospective

Following sell-out shows in Los Angeles and at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, comes the National Gallery of Australia’s 2014 summer blockbuster James Turrell: A Retrospective. Never before seen in Australia and showing only in Canberra, James Turrell is considered one of the greatest artists of our time. The National Gallery of Australia’s retrospective combines works from LACMA’s tour with spectacular new, site-specific installations. The exhibition is open until Monday 8 June, 2015 at the National Gallery of Australia. Ensure to check the exhibitions time changes over Christmas (closed Christmas Day). Tickets are available to purchase through Ticketek but bookings are also essential as only 15 people are allowed through in any one session.

Norforce: Tony Albert

Tony Albert works in a number of art forms, including drawing, painting, photography, and installation. A founding member of Queensland’s indigenous art collective proppaNOW, Albert’s art explores political, historical and cultural issues relevant to indigenous people in Australia today. Albert exhibits internationally and nationally and has been the recipient of numerous awards and prizes. Most recently Albert won the City of Sydney commission to create a public artwork in Hyde Park. Titled Yininmadyemi – Thou didst let fall the artwork honours the military service of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander service men and women. Open until 3 November 2015 at the Australian War Memorial.

Other exhibitions

For a comprehensive round up of smaller exhibitions around town, visit Capital Magazine.

EXHIBITIONS

Rapt in Felt Exhibition

Handmade felt is the new favourite of the design world. It is a natural, warm material, featuring in the collections of Stella McCartney and Givenchy and has been presented in European design fairs in a multitude of forms extending from home wares to jewellery. The Rapt in Felt exhibition features work from over 27 contemporary felt makers, ranging from wearable to decorative arts. This will be the 18th year that the CRF has held this exhibition and fashion show that regularly attracts over 500 people. In preparation for their exhibition, CRF members have worked for months creating their unique felt pieces. The exhibition opens Wednesday 27 May and runs until 6 June with a fashion parade at 11am on Saturday 30 May at The Q, Queanbeyan.

Kerry Johns ‘Forest Subjective’ 

Kerry Johns’ landscape paintings may be familiar to Canberrans from her 2012 show at Chapman Gallery in Manuka, where Monaro-inspired landscapes sat alongside those stimulated by her years on the Eurobodalla coast. These coastal works have often taken the iconography of the spotted gum coastal forest as their motif and starting point. The recurring motif in this exhibition is the stands of forest that dominate the headlands of the south coast, though the real subject of the paintings could be said to be the interplay of light, colour, shape and the ambiguity of positive and negative space. Forest Subjective runs until Monday 31 May, and will be open weekdays 9.30am-2.30pm and weekends 10am-4pm. For further details contact Form Studio and Gallery (0430 359 776) and see the paintings at kerryjohns.com and formstudioandgallery.com.au

X-rated: the sex industry in the ACT

Since the 1980s Canberra has been synonymous with sex in the minds of many Australians. Twenty years have passed since it became legal to sell X-rated videos in the Australian Capital Territory. The adult industry has gone through periods of growth, boom and, many would argue, bust. This exhibition explores the evolution of Canberra’s sex industry over the past 50 years. The public is warned that some material displayed in this exhibition may cause offence. Persons under 18 years of age may not enter this exhibition. On until 20 September at Canberra Museum and Gallery.

Revealing the Rothschild Prayer Book
(c.1505–1510 from the Kerry Stokes Collection)

An acknowledged masterpiece of Renaissance manuscript illumination, the Rothschild Prayer Book has remained the preserve of a privileged few. With its recent acquisition for the Kerry Stokes Collection, this historic book of hours will be on public display with a selection of the National Library of Australia’s medieval and Renaissance treasures. Open until 9 August from 10am to 5pm every day at the National Library of Australia. Visit the website for ticket prices.

Colour my world: Australian photography

Colour My World is the National Gallery of Australia’s first exhibition dedicated to the handcoloured photograph. It draws together new acquisitions and rarely seen works from the National Collection. These photographs challenge the medium’s technical sameness by personalising the print and imbuing it with individuality and uniqueness as well as an intimacy, warmth and fallibility. On until 30 August at National Gallery of Australia. Free entry.

Australian Paintings from the James and Jacqui Erskine Collection

This selection of Australian works from the James and Jacqui Erskine collection testifies to a breadth of taste and confidence of judgement. See paintings by Lloyd Rees, Kevin Connor, Brian Blanchflower, Emily Kngwarreye, Ildiko Kovacs, Chris Langois, Rosalie Gascoigne, Karl Wiebke, Allan Mitelman, John Olsen, George Tjangurrayi, Aida Tomescu, David Serisier, Prince of Wales, Lucy Culliton, and Virginia Coventry, among others. This is the first time that such a large portion of the invigoratingly various Erskine collection has been on public view. On until 28 June (12pm-5pm) at the Drill Hall Gallery, ANU. Free entry.

Claire Primrose Memory Mapping

Claire’s current body of work is inspired and informed by many different locations from the Australian landscape —a collection of landscape inspired abstracted paintings. She is interested in recreating the surfaces, textures and colours evocative of a particular place, although each work is a culmination of many different images, spaces and experiences, achieved through memory and experimentation. Claire works outside on location and incorporate elements of her surroundings. On until Monday 31 May at Form Studio, Queanbeyan.

Australia in the Great War

Australia in the Great War is the Australian War Memorial’s new exhibition in the First World War Galleries. Discover one of the world’s great collections of material related to the First World War. The First World War Galleries integrate a wide variety of items from this collection, including dioramas, art works; uniforms; medals; technology such as artillery and firearms; photographs; film; and letters and diaries.  The Australian War Memorial presents the story of Australia in the First World War chronologically, covering all major theatres of operations: Gallipoli, the Western Front, Sinai and Palestine and the war at sea. On display now until 1 January 2017 at the Australian War Memorial.

Afghanistan: The Australian Story

Afghanistan and the Middle East are now linked to Australia’s national story. Australia’s mission is clear: to combat international terrorism, to stabilise Afghanistan, and to support Australia’s international alliances. Yet a mission statement cannot capture the challenges, the successes, and the comradeship of the Australian men and women who pursue it. Nor the joys and heartbreaks, or the loneliness and the dedication of those who wait at home. Some of these experiences, set against the powerful imagery of a modern war, are told in this exhibition. Over time, the display will change and evolve as more veterans share their stories. On display until 3 November 2015.

William Edwin Pidgeon (1909–1981), war correspondent and artist

William Edwin Pidgeon was a painter, cartoonist, illustrator, and newspaper critic. This exhibition presents a selection of the over 400 works by William Pidgeon held in the Australian War Memorial’s Art collection. The works relate to Pidgeon’s Second World War experiences in Darwin, New Guinea, Borneo and Morotai between 1943 to 1945. On display in the Second World War Galleries until 7 March 2016 at the Australian War Memorial.

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2015

The National Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition is selected from a national field of entries that reflect the distinctive vision of Australia’s aspiring and professional portrait photographers and the unique nature of their subjects. On until 8 June at the National Portrait Gallery.

Uncommon Australians: The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling

Uncommon Australians: The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling showcases portraits acquired through the generosity of the National Portrait Gallery’s Founding Patrons, L Gordon Darling AC CMG and Marilyn Darling AC; and pays tribute to the Darlings’ persistence in turning their private dream of a gallery of portraits of ‘uncommon Australians’ into a tangible collection in a purpose-built home. Accompanied by a lavish catalogue, the exhibition tours to McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery, Victoria, and the Tweed Regional Gallery, New South Wales. On now until 14 June at the National Portrait Gallery.

Alex Seton: As of today

See the remarkable sculptures that commemorate the lives of the 41 soldiers who lost their lives while serving in Afghanistan.  “The power of the sculpted flags is developed through the way their pale marble, slightly pink in hue and each imbued with blushes and veins represents an individual and a life lost in the line of duty” Dr Brendan Nelson. On now until 27 May 2015 at the Australian War Memorial. Entry is free.

Urban Suburban

Comprised entirely of works from the Canberra Museum and Gallery visual arts collection, this exhibition explores urban and suburban Canberra. The works examine Canberra as a town and a city independent of the national monuments that define it as the Nation’s Capital.

From black-and-white photographs of the city from the 1960s through to the work of contemporary artists examining life in the suburbs, the exhibition reveals the rituals and experiences that enrich life in Canberra and discovers thematic links between the diverse works in the Collection. Urban Suburban encompasses a range of media including printmaking, photography, painting and sculpture. On until 21 June 2015 at Canberra Museum and Gallery.

Jenni Kemarre Martiniello: Reinventing the Weave

ReInventing the Weave features the sublime, hand blown woven glass sculptures of Jenni Kemarre Martiniello. Weaving has been a long and durable practice within Australian Indigenous Cultures. The artist’s works are inspired by, and draw upon, the beauty of traditional woven objects while paying respect to the elegant forms of these utilitarian vessels. The glass weave technique explores the geometry and precision of the traditional form, fusing it with the exquisite beauty of glass and light to celebrate the juncture of object and art. Curator: Kelli Cole. On now until 7 June 2015 at the Canberra Glassworks.

The Home Front: Australia during the First World War

Commemorating the centenary of the First World War, The Home Front looks at life back at home and the pride, sorrow, passion, wonder and joy experienced by those far from the battlefields. Through 23 personal stories, this exhibition explores Australians’ choices, opportunities and challenges in a time of heightened emotions. See the effects of war on those at home. Rediscover Prime Minister Billy Hughes’s determination to impose conscription on a divided nation, Basil Watson’s thrilling and ultimately tragic aerobatic displays in his homemade biplane, May Gibbs’s quaint postcards that carried messages of joy to soldiers and more. On display at the National Museum of Australia until 1 January 2017.

Crisis 1914! The call to arms

Crisis 1914! The call to arms explores the political events which led to Australia’s involvement in the First World War, from outbreak of war in August to the first convoy’s departure in November 1914. In Australia’s first crisis as a new nation, we went willingly, even enthusiastically, into the war. See the original cabinet table used in 1914, along with other memorabilia from the era which help to tell the story of Australia’s political journey. This exhibition contributes to the Anzac Centenary, marking 100 years of service by Australian servicemen and women, and the experience of war by all Australians. At the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House until 5 August 2015.

Without Consent

Without Consent: Australia’s past adoption practices is now open at the National Archives.  An exhibition of moving experiences of heartbreak and resilience, shared by people impacted by Australia’s past adoption practices. This project has been assisted by the Department of Social Services. Open now until 19 July at the National Archives, Parkes.

Art is a Weapon

Art is a Weapon takes you back to an Australia gripped by the Cold War. Amid propaganda for and against communism, artists turned to an image familiar to most Australians; the Southern Cross flag of the Eureka Stockade. The portfolio contains fourteen works from ten artists, including three from prominent Melbourne artist Noel Counihan. Counihan was a Social Realist who was heavily involved in the Communist Party, and was well-known in the Melbourne art community. The works reflect both the Eureka rebellion itself and, more broadly, the themes of workers’ rights and struggles against the established authorities.

Art is a Weapon explores how the Eureka story, legend and iconography have been used by groups and causes of all political flavours to spread their message. Alongside the portfolio of works, other objects and artworks using the Southern Cross motif show how the idea of Eureka has been adopted by groups as diverse as young communists and motorcycle clubs. Open now at the Museum of Australian Democracy. Visit their website for more information.

Behind the Lines 2014

Superheroes. Battle axes. Death stares. Who said politics was dry and dull? Highly anticipated and scorchingly honest, Behind the Lines 2014 celebrates the best political cartoons of 2014. The exhibition – one of the most anticipated of the year for politic tragics is now open at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House. In the 2014 exhibition, cartoonists wryly comment on Tony Abbott’s first year in government. They see the Coalition attempting to deliver strong and stable leadership, as well as fulfilling their election promises to stop the boats, axe the tax, fix the budget and reduce red tape. Meanwhile, a restless Australian Labor Party waits for its Leader to ditch the past, move forward and say something. Each year the exhibition acknowledges a cartoonist as the Behind the Lines Political Cartoonist of the Year. Open until November 2015.

Afghanistan: The Australian Story

Afghanistan and the Middle East are now linked to Australia’s national story. Australia’s mission is clear: to combat international terrorism, to stabilise Afghanistan, and to support Australia’s international alliances. Yet a mission statement cannot capture the challenges, the successes, and the comradeship of the Australian men and women who pursue it. Nor the joys and heartbreaks, or the loneliness and the dedication of those who wait at home. Some of these experiences, set against the powerful imagery of a modern war, are told in this exhibition. Over time, the display will change and evolve as more veterans share their stories. Open until 3 November 2015 at the Australian War Memorial.

Enterprising Australians

An insight into how great ideas happen, hear the inspiring stories of Australia’s modern-day innovators. Discover the unique journey that inventors take from idea to product in this exhibition featuring video stories, product displays and interactive stations that explore the origins of products from a range of fields, including mining, agriculture, medical, automotive, and food science. Showing until 30 June 2016 at The Ian Potter Technology Learning Centre.

Keepsakes: Australians and The Great War

To mark the centenary of the First World War, the National Library of Australia invites you to explore their fascinating collection of wartime albums, medals, letters and diaries in Keepsakes. Keepsakes tells the story of The Great War as experienced by Australian servicemen and women, key political leaders, civilians, artists and families on the home-front. Discover how very personal stories become our nation’s collective memory. Open until Sunday 31 May 2015.

Power of 1: Does your voice count?

Discover the changing nature of Australian democracy and the power of your voice within it. Power of 1 is a ground breaking interactive exhibition shaped by the answers you share, about what matters to you. Step back in time to remember the events, people and experiences that have shaped each generation of Australians. Have your say about the state of democracy and help to create a new kind of museum experience curated by the voices of the Australian people. It’s time…have your say and be heard. Open until 12 November 2015 at Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House.

Ben Quilty: After Afghanistan

After spending over three weeks talking to Australian servicemen and women in Afghanistan, Ben Quilty felt an overwhelming need to tell their stories. He went there in October 2011 as an official war artist, commissioned by the Australian War Memorial and attached to the Australian Defence Force. His task was to record and interpret the experiences of Australians deployed as part of Operation Slipper in Kabul, Kandahar, and Tarin Kot in Afghanistan and at Al Minhad Airbase in the United Arab Emirates. Quilty’s work employs a wide range of genres, including portraits, figurative subjects, still-lifes and landscapes. On display until 14 August 2015.

Menzies: By John Howard

Former Prime Minister John Howard has curated this Menzies exhibition and shares his unique and personal insights, reflections and stories on the intense first term of former Prime Minister Robert Menzies. The exhibition marks the 75th anniversary of Robert Menzies’ first term as prime minister (1939-41) and features objects never before seen by the public, including personal items on loan from the Menzies family. Open now until 3 September 2015 at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House.

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