Arts Report August 2021

By Jennifer Ann Davies, NCWQ Arts, Letters and Music Adviser (

WOW! (Women of the World) FESTIVAL – The first WOW festival to be held in Cairns FNQ will open with a concert on Friday 6 August 2021. Social Justice Commissioner, June OSCAR   A0, and Queensland’s Attorney General, Shannon FENTIMAN, will join the festivities on Sat 7 August, with workshops, discussions and local stories exploring the lives and achievements of women and girls searching for solutions to ongoing gender injustice and lack of safety. SDGs 10/4/3/5/12

ChangeMakers online event: THE PACIFIC: WHY IT MATTERS: University of Queensland: Tuesday 13 July 2021: 6-7:15pm  Brisbane AEST – Online FREE! (Advice of this sent via emails as the posting of report will be a little late.) Stability and prosperity in the Pacific have long been stated as among Australia’s top foreign policy priorities, but for many Australians the region remains little understood. SDGs 17/11/8

APRC – A big Thank You to our Asian/Pacific executive members, Hean Bee Wee, Christine Knock and Joan Fu for sharing information and newsletters. The most recent APRC newsletter also shares news of the June virtual meeting of NCWV  (Victoria), at which the stunning Dr Farida FLEMING was a keynote speaker. Dr Fleming has had over 20 years supporting social justice and overseas development and education, mostly in the Pacific and South East Asian regions – in agriculture, education, gender equality, health and humanitarian sectors. Dr Fleming has recently published her work and experience in the Pacific – “Promising Practices” – Publications/June 2021 Newsletter. Highly recommended. NCW Korea maintains focus on difficulties generated by the continuing COVID effects and we congratulate and welcome their new president, Myung HUH. NCW Taiwan also held elections and the wonderful Linda Lui is president for another term. Linda highlighted the fact that N.Y. CSW 65 still had in excess of 25,000 virtual attendees, despite Covid’s assaults! APRC June 2021. SDGs 10/5/8/11/17  Thank you all so much for updates!

ART FOR SMART’S SAKE! UQ invites us to catch up with recently retired Queensland Court of Appeal judge, the Honourable Anthe PHILIPPIDES and learn WHY she believes the arts are absolutely vital for humanity. SDGs 3/4/11

DISCOVER ‘EUROPEAN MASTERPIECES’ through workshops, talks and more! GOMA celebrates the European Masterpieces from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Drop by ‘The Studio’ for exquisite daily performances from musicians; and sketch live costumed models and still life objects using materials provided! #mydreawingGOMA SDGs 17/3/4

OPERA AUSTRALIA’S CARMEN – CPAC Theatre Cairns. Carmen is the femme fatale you can’t forget! In Bizet’s famous opera, she sings her sensual Habanera and lures Don Jose into her world. Experience the thrilling Spanish colour and rhythms of Bizet’s vibrant score with Opera Australia’s singers and live chamber orchestra. SDGs 17/3/4

DENDY CINEMAS have screened quality films along the East Coast of Australia for over 30 years. Those of you in the City can enjoy wonderful film at a number of venues. In the Far North we have END CREDITS FILM CLUB which has recently supported the French Film Festival and has offered: My Name is GULPILIL..”my story of my story…” David Gulpilil Ridjimiraril Dalaithngu.  (This film is simultaneously being filmed on SBS TV). SCATTERED PEOPLEAn inspiring and thought-provoking documentary about our music and our humanity..; and Jean-Paul SALOME’S The Godmother starring Isabelle HUPPERT and based on the acclaimed novel by Hannelore CAYRE. SDGs 17/4/8/10

BRUSSELS: New Director Kim de WEERDT is succeeding Leen Scheerlinck, who during the past twenty years transformed the Dutch-speaking Council of Women of Belgium into a contemporary and modern organization. The new director studied Roman languages and Women’s Studies in Brussels, Antwerp and Aix-en-Provence and is a real art and culture lover. The past years she worked in managerial positions at different Academies of Visual Arts in Antwerp. ICW April 2021 SDGs 12/10

TROPIC is a magazine, first produced in 2016, is as Cairns based publication covering business, health, lifestyle, fashion, food, arts and sport in the Far North region. The State Library of Queensland has just deemed the magazine a publication of historical value. It will now be preserved and added to the catalogues of both the Queensland and the Australian libraries. Tropic: Issue 30: Jun-Jul 2021. p.34 SDGs 8/9/11/12

RESILIENCE! – “Experience Everything!” – “Resilience is very different from being numb. Resilience means you experience, you feel, you fail, you hurt, you fall…but you keep going.” Yasmin Mogahed: Resilience: Herron: p.30 SDG 3

WOMEN IN MUSIC! – From Cairns to Brisbane and regional centres in between, nine emerging music industry professionals have joined eight leading mentors to plan a regional tour. The program, QMusic involves Melania Jack – the colourful personality from “The Ironing Maidens”, is Project Manager. We await boosted live entertainment throughout Queensland! – p.30 SDGs 17/5/4/3/10

Strategies to manage SOCIAL ISOLATION and LONELINESS are being sought currently, because of a range of effects highlighted by COVID-19. The following poem was published in a 2nd edition of “A Few Thoughts from Me to You” in 1987. Publication under my married name of Jennifer Ann White. ISBN 0 9599280 – Myriad problems existed then, and one had to be RESILIENT – which meant that it was ok to be brave and afraid at the same time….and we were!

To feel lonely in a crowd – is the loneliest lonely of all!

To feel lonely in a family – is the loneliest lonely of all!  

To feel lonely in a marriage – IS the loneliest lonely of all! 

 Copyright Jennifer Ann Davies- published 1972&1987.

NATIONAL LIBRARY OF AUSTRALIA – Please don’t forget that the papers of the Australian Federation of Women Voters (AFWV) – part of the story of the long journey equality for women, which are at risk of crumbling and disappearing, need protecting and funding by donations, in part, to preserve digital copies of letters, notes, names, stories and voices Australian women who were instrumental in progressing women’s rights. The AFWV operated as a united, national and apolitical voice to lobby government at all levels and represent Australian women in the international arena of feminist activism! philanthropy& Dr Marie-Louise Ayres FAHA Director General, Philanthropy 2021 SDGs 17/5/4

BOOKS! lighten, brighten, illuminate, satiate, answer ‘why’s’ and surprise! Lighten up with the zany Janet EVANOVICH and co-author Charlotte HUGHES – FULL TILT Headline Book Publishing Great Britain 2015. ‘Punchy, saucy and stacks of fun.  I’m hooked.’ Mirror. ‘Utterly delightful!’ Cosmopolitan. ‘The pace never flags…and the dialogue fairly sizzles off the page.’ Irish Times. SDGs 17/3

BOOKS! lighten, brighten, illuminate, satiate, answer ‘why’s’ and surprise!

WHEN DOGS CRY Pan Macmillan Aust P/L 2001, 2010. Markus ZUSAK wrote this tough,  poetic, street story early in his writing career, and it was, and is, a wonderful text to use in the classroom, particularly where there were ethnic and cultural differences. “You’re a bit of a lonely bastard, aren’t you?” said Rube.  “Yeah,” I answered, “I guess I am.” But Cameron Wolfe was hungry….sick of being the filthy, torn, half-smiling, half-scowling underdog. He finally met a girl.  He’s got words in his spirit…now he’s out to prove that there’s nothing more beautiful than an underdog who’s willing to stand up. SDGs 1/2/10/4

SLEEPING TIGER Cornet Paperbacks/Hachette UK 1967. Rosamunde PILCHER has had a long and  distinguished career as a novelist and short story writer, but it was her phenomenally successful novel, THE SHELL SEEKERS that captured many of us, as did the subsequent film, based on her novel. A warm spell charms and readers, in ‘Sleeping Tiger’, and begs the  question: “Can second thoughts mean second chances?” An interesting read and in a  paperback special that can be found in most Queensland newsagencies. SDGs 16/17/3

LIFE SUPPORT Transworld Publishers London. 2006. An intriguing text with supporting references included as the story was highly unusual and scientific and medical references are useful. Author Tess GERRITSEN is also a doctor and she brings to her novels first-hand knowledge of emergency and autopsy rooms. Additionally, as an anthropology undergraduate, she catalogued centuries-old human remains, and continues to travel the world, driven by her fascination with ancient cultures and bizarre natural phenomena.  A patient is delirious and in a critical condition, and barely responds to treatment…then he disappears. A second patient has the same infection – then an unsettling twist.. only then does female Dr Toby Harper discover the unthinkable… “This is crime-writing at its nerve-tingling best.” Harlen Coben. SDGs 15/2/4

LONG ROAD TO MERCY Pan Books London 2019. David BALDACCI has established links with government sources, giving his books added authenticity. He is also co-founder, with his wife, of the Wish You Well Foundation, which is dedicated to Literacy in the US. In this novel a fabulous new character appears! – FBI Special Agent, Atlee Pine, has learnt three lessons in life: Some wounds never heal.  Time doesn’t lessen your pain.  You can always make a difference.  Enjoy! SDGs 17/3/8

ISOLDE is magnificent. Set in Ireland, Cornwell and Camelot, it offers a compelling version of a familiar legend rich in language, Celtic magick and mythology, yet firmly grounded in the well-loved Arthurian world. Simon & Schuster UK Ltd. 2002 ‘For the One before the One/Unforgotten/A true Irish Queen’. “All his life, Merlin mused, he had known how to wait….through all his lives….He breathed deeply, drawing in the rich smell of the woodland, sensing the pulse of the living earth. Beneath the mouldering leaves of winter, he could feel the approach of spring…. All winters in the end gave way to spring.” Ch.1 SDGs 4/3

 THE SHINING CITY  is written by Australia’s very own Kate FORSYTH, who lives in Sydney  with her husband, three children, a little black cat called Shadow and thousands of books!  Kate loves being allowed to read, write and daydream and thanks everyone for making this possible for her!  Random House Australia 2005. This fantasy novel, Book 2 of ‘Rhiannon’s Ride’, moves from light to dark….dark to light….”All Olwynne could remember…was her father falling away from her into some deep pit, his black wings bent over his face, and then hundreds of ravens, an unkindness of ravens, plummeting from the sky…” p,3 SDGs 4/3

OTHER PEOPLE’S CHILDREN Black Swan UK 1999. ‘Wonderfully and compulsively readable…She can be as subtle as Austen, as sharp as Bronte. Trollope’s brilliant.’ Fay Weldon. Joanna TROLLOPE has written nine highly-acclaimed contemporary novels. She also writes romantic historical novels under the name of Caroline Harvey. Trollope has written a study of women in the British Empire Britannia’s Daughters. SDGs 17/4/3/11

RITE DE PASSAGE: The days on which each of my Daughters became Woman, I stopped. Holy Days. The days on which each would experience her own ‘rite de passage’. The ones which ancient Wise Women celebrated in huts – separated for a short time from daily activity, yet included in the rhythms of tribal life. The ones where new menstrual blood mingled with Mother Earth – symbiosis..droplet by droplet… A celebration of transition ‘ in primitive societies’, the dictionary tells us.

Somehow a sadness pervades as well – Innocence to Experience?

These were new beginnings – threads of new becomings – no longer celebrated in huts, still separated for a short time from daily activity, we include in the rhythms of contemporary life our own celebration. Today’s rite de passage we celebrate with warm hugs, a few tears, Libra Fleur and hot chocolate! Sacred. Book Five: Always Becoming…Jennifer Ann Davies 2010.

RESILIENCE is said to be the key to building a solid foundation and the fortifications required to accept and embrace life regardless of what it throws at you. Perhaps it is the art of survival? Perhaps at really tough times it does come down to that, but it’s a skill that’s more relevant to thriving than surviving.  ‘Resilience is not about overcoming but becoming.’ Sherri Mandell, Israeli-American author who founded the Koby Mandell Foundation honouring her son who was likely murdered by Palestinian terrorists. Herron Book Distributors Pty Ltd Qld.


Wishing you all well.

Au revoir!

Jennifer Ann DAVIES
National Council of Women Queensland Inc.
International Council of Women/ Conseil International des Femmes



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