By Jennifer Ann Davies, NCWQ Arts, Letters and Music Adviser (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The merry month of May has been full of adventures, hard work, surprises, beautiful art, live performances, refreshing music and Friendship!
36th ICW-CIF GENERAL ASSEMBLY
The 36th ICW-CIF GENERAL ASSEMBLY was held in Avignon, France May 16-21 2022. I will give you an extract from an overview of events and also a brief glimpse of highlights.
AVIGNON HIGHLIGHTS 2022
Friendly faces foretell fierce
Feminine fire! – Phoenix, fixated
On freer, friendlier futures.
Presentations, proposals, procedures…
Prevention, protection, projects…
Possibilities, probabilities, programs…
Positive Peace processes – Prayer.
Copyright: Jennifer Ann Davies 2022
The outstanding highlight of this gathering of thirty-one of our member countries, was Friendship! Friendship allows open communication, granting each person a voice! Refreshing old friendships, speaking to each other face to face, debating issues, underpinnings, peace and plans robustly, with respect, and forming new friendships. was grand! Having voices silenced in my home council, it was a huge delight to enjoy, encourage and enunciate in an inclusive environment where we shared the same respect, reverence, enthusiasm, encouragement and energy, to protect, persevere and pilot change, in a dynamic, chaotic world! I will not print all of this, but include our Asian Pacific sister Countries for your information – We are all such close neighbours.
Events and procedural and social highlights have been compiled, so this perspective retains focus on communication, the lifeblood of our Councils. At the APRC meeting in Avignon (18 May 2022) , Country Reports were acknowledged from: Australia, India, Philipines, Taiwan, Thailand and Indonesia. A book had been distributed to attendees of the General Assembly, and included general reports from: Bangladesh pp7-11, Korea pp39-43, India pp32-35, Philipines pp54-58, Taiwan pp67-70, and Thailand pp71-75.
The 36 ICW-CIF General Assembly Avignon 16-21 May, 2022. BOOK OF REPORTS 2018-2022. Apologies were acknowledged at our APRC meeting from: Bangladesh, PNG, Fiji and Samoa. An excellent overview of the history, vision, tasks, general program and regional and international activities of the Indonesian Women’s Congress KOWANI could be a possible blueprint for other Councils. It is highly comprehensive and useful. Jennifer Ann Davies Advisor Arts/Letters ICW. Extract from perspective written for APRC newsletter June 2022.(Asian Pacific Regional Council) SDGs10/11/3/4/5/17
Extract from Overview of 36 General Assembly in Avignon by Elisabeth Newman AM
The opening ceremony on 16th May was held in the beautiful reception room of the 19th century City Hall, with the Mayor of Avignon, Madame Cecile Helle, giving the opening speech. In the afternoon, the Conference was opened and a Symposium held in the Palais des Papes Congress Hall, based on the past triennial theme and theme for the General Assembly “Social Protection for all Women and Girls: Sustainable Development for the World.”
The recording of the symposium:
Extract only from comprehensive report written by Elisabeth Newman for NCWV and modified for APRC 1 June 2022. More detail is available if you are interested.
Our French colleagues published: The Equality of Women and Men in Working Life Where We Stand: White Paper, Volumes 1 & 2. Marie-Claude Bertrand, President of the CNFF and newly my international co-ordinator, includes in her Foreword Vol 1 and Preface Vol 2, notions of a 50/50 world, and a view that imprisoning stereotypes are finally being deconstructed. In partnership with UN Women France, CNFF held a parallel event with the CSW 2021 18 March 2021 where they broadened the field of professions and functions of women and men in working life, to include Agriculture, Craft Trades, Digital Technology, Healthcare, Sport, Politics and the impact of the health crisis. These interesting and progressive publications are available in English on: www.cnff.fr See also unwomen.org
FRANCE is full of beautiful and interesting ART
In Paris and Avignon there are numerous choices for visitors and art lovers, and interesting travelling exhibitions were offered by many art museums. Just near my heritage Hotel Mignon, in Avignon, was Le Cube Vernet, where one could enjoy history artefacts, modernism and the interesting Vernon Blake – 1875-1930. Blake had been published in Oxford and London, throughout his career, encouraging and educating budding artists to work with perhaps, a different focus, highlighting Rhythms, Lines and Colour. Having always rushed to Musee d’Orsay in Paris, I had not realised that the three Van Gogh’s therein: Thatched Cottages at Cordeville, Two Children and Vincent’s Bedroom in Arles are relatively rare, for there are NO Van Gogh paintings available for viewing in Provence! SDGs 3/4/8/17
Elisabeth and I viewed some bizarre and historically interesting art in the Palais de Roure, which we think may also provide studies of culture and local traditions, in Avignon, with many depictions of sailors, seamen from varied cultures and climes and a bizarre Croix de marinier du Rhone – which was a definite mixture of icons and cultural symbols, donated in 2017 by a family member, right there in the delta of the river Rhone. Much more was viewed and possible….. wonderfully interesting! Figures and symbols from Haiti and Martinique were evident – and I found these in other art works throughout the region. SDGs 3/4/14/15.
The ultimate treat in Paris was a world class performance LE ROI LION – The Lion King – indefatigable favourite, for which audiences had to wait as the cast was felled with Covid-19..so I was immeasurably lucky to secure a prime ticket in ‘Orchestre’ right near the giant Elephants, Giraffes, Swooping Jungle Birds and fantastic Performers!!!! I have numerous photos of the actors the outstanding costumes and some of the large, beautiful Puppets – however, this report could become a book if I included all, so you may want to check the website. The venue is the beautiful Theatre Mogador – Paris, where the original music from Broadway continues to delight and enchant the more than 100 million spectators from around the world. With beautiful colours, stunning effects and enchanting music, Le Roi Lion tells Simba’s moving story and his conquest of the Land of the Lions. www.theatremogador.com SDGs 3/4/12
Zurich offered much also, with another world class exhibition at Kunsthaus Zurich
YOKO “This room moves at the same speed as the clouds….” Born in 1933, Yoko Ono is one of the most influential artists of our time. Her performances and actions of the 1960s and 1970s achieved cult status – and some of these were performed at the Kunsthaus Zurich. Interestingly, Yoko Ono has explored socio-political issues that are still highly relevant today. She has always been committed to peace in the world and the feminist cause – and her ideas are presented in varied ways.. sometimes humourous, poetic, radical…her artistic oeuvre is diverse, encompassing sculptures, works on paper installations, performances, film and music. The Zurich exhibition presented a selection of 80 works from all periods of her career. Curator Mirjam Varadinis, Yoko Ono, Jon Hendricks www.kunsthaus.ch SDGs 5/3/4/8/10
Most viewers, including myself, spent a very long time at this exhibition. The exhibits, the notes and photos of and from women all over the world – the startling bullet hole – stark – frightening – lethal…the gentle humour, wry – the fierce efforts to uncover abuses, untruths, self, reflected the bravery and many of the attributes I have noted in my colleagues, particularly those who mentored me in my days as a ‘new chum’ in NCWQ and those who mentored me in my role with ICW. In a post-modernist age, where irreverence snorts at age as much as it dismantles language, civilised practices and common courtesy, it was refreshingly heartening to note the interest, understanding and reverence evident on the faces, in the body language, and the time spent viewing and reviewing films, objects, reading notes from myriad women and children….a treat to know that there still exists a blend of young and old – of brashness and wisdom – of learning and knowing – of allowing and doing…an acceptance of all. SDGs 10/4 There were hundreds of photos of Women’s eyes and their brief versions of abuse – I will include just one with this report. Copyright Yoko Ono: Kunsthaus Zurich.
More BOOKS are being read here in Queensland and around the world!
New Book Swap shelves continue to be stacked and people of all ages are caring for and sharing these books – thus there continues a mix of old and new authors, titles, themes, plots and adventures! Additionally, reprints are ‘in vogue’ and as they can now be printed cheaply in India, Vietnam and other Asian countries, abundant bargains are available at many retail outlets.
NEVER CLOSE YOUR EYES – Emma BURSTALL – Can you hide from the truth forever? Preface publishing/Random House group/London 2009. www.prefacepublishing.co.uk Three friends join a writing group – one is hiding an old secret…’
THE PULL OF THE MOON – Diane JANES – more secrets!! One way or another the secret is going to find a way out…. “Teaching is a greedy vocation. It can gobble up your life….biting off great chunks at a time, demanding your full commitment…” p207 Constable & Robinson Ltd London www.constablerobinson.com
THE RACKETEER – John GRISHAM – He was betrayed by the FBI – now he wants revenge…’electrifying’ Guardian. ..’ingenious’ New York Times…’entertaining’ Entertainment Weekly. Hodder & Stoughton UK 2012, www.hodder.co.uk This is a story that reinforces Grisham’s reputation as a lion of the literary thriller.
THE VENUS CONSPIRACY – Michael CORDY – Corgi/Transworld publishers/Random House Group UK www.rbooks.co.uk Ripped from tomorrow’s headlines, ‘The Venus Conspiracy’ is Cordy’s latest glimpse of a compelling future where even human emotions can be bought and where true love can be faked…
THE STANISLASKI SISTERS – Nora ROBERTS – Harlequin Books Chatswood NSW Australia/2001. Reprinted by popular demand. I had not read this author before but have now read several of her books* This novel contains the story of Natasha and the story of Rachel – they intertwine.
THE VILLA – Nora ROBERTS – Piatkus/Little, Brown Book group London 2008/2010. www.hatchette.co.uk www.piatkus.co.uk Mixing business with pleasure can be dangerous, but when acts of sabotage threaten the family business, not only dominance but survival is critical.
AN UNFORGETTABLE LADY – J.R. WARD Piatkus UK 2013 www.hachette.co.uk www.piatkus.co.uk Another interesting female author who presents an extremely intense and emotionally powerful tale, with elements of the paranormal that are colourful, dangerous and richly conceived. With intricate plots and believable characters, J.R. Ward has penned a sure-fire hit!
…and another UNFORGETTABLE LADY – TRUGANINI – Journey through the apocalypse. Cassandra PYBUS. “A compelling story, beautifully told.” Julia BAIRD, author and broadcaster. Allen & Unwin Crows Nest NSW 2020 www.allenandunwin.com info&allenandunwin.com Cassandra Pybus is a distinguished historian and author of twelve books. She has held scholarships at the University of Sydney, Georgetown University in Washington DC, the University of Texas and King’s College London. She is descended from the colonist who received the largest free land grant on Truganini’s traditional country of Bruny Island.
An extraordinary history, from south-east Tasmania, where Truganini, then an old Aboriginal woman was often sighted by the author when she was a child….The old woman had survived psychological and cultural shifts that were extreme, for over seven decades! Truganini became an international icon for the monumental tragedy – the so-called extinction of the original people of Tasmania. Our mutual friend, Professor Henry Reynolds writes: “For the first time, a biographer who treats her (Truganini) with the insight and empathy she deserves. The result is a book of unquestionable national importance.” SDGs 4/5/10
…and the Phoenix will rise again… AU REVOIR!
Jennifer Ann DAVIES
National Council of Women Queensland Inc.
International Council of Women/ Conseil International des Femmes
NCWQ = the National Council of Women Queensland Inc. (Australia)
ICW = the International Council of Women/Conseil International des Femmes
CNFF = Conseil National des Femmes Francaises
APRC = Asian Pacific Regional Council
CSW65 (2021) Commission on the Status of Women
UN = United Nations (UN Women France)
The National Council of Women of Queensland Inc (NCWQ) is a non-party-political, non-sectarian, not-for-profit, umbrella organisation with broadly humanitarian and educational objectives. It seeks to raise the awareness of members as to their rights and responsibilities as citizens and encourages their participation in all aspects of community life.
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