section: Arts And Culture

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Human faces of Monet's demons

    • Benedict Coleridge
    • 09 August 2013
    7 Comments

    Monet, in a period of deep grief and loss, made what was in his career a rare decision: to paint other people. The artist forgot himself in contemplating the faces of his wife and his son, in depicting the faces of death and of incomprehension. We need icons like this — icons of incomprehension, reminders of the fragile self that, behind its virtual armour, is beset by doubt and demons.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Crime kids served celebrity gods

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 08 August 2013
    1 Comment

    'God didn't give me these talents and looks to just sit around being a model or being famous. I want to lead a huge charity organisation. I want to lead a country, for all I know.' In 2008–2009 a group of teenagers stole $3 million of jewellery and clothes from the homes of Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and other Hollywood stars. Coppola portrays this as an outcome of materialism centred on celebrity worship.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Migrant factory worker's story

    • Selected poems
    • 06 August 2013
    1 Comment

    The factory thrust its bloody quota past her six days a week, and she did what she had to. The gloves and boots and heavy denim became first and last lines of defence. She lost a thumb once, then a fingertip a year later. Language didn't come into it. She got sick and sacked in the same fortnight, then lay doggo for a decade.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Flawed humanity of a police shooting martyr

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 01 August 2013
    3 Comments

    On 1 January 2009, police in Oakland, California shot dead an unarmed African-American man, 22-year-old Oscar Grant. The event sparked riots, and renewed tensions around race and debates about police procedure. Underlying this politicised context is the story of a young father and former drug dealer who was trying, with mixed success, to turn his life around.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    We're all boat people after all

    • Brian Doyle
    • 31 July 2013
    7 Comments

    Boat people, job thieves, welfare cheats — I've heard the insults, and the greed, fear and incipient blood behind those words. Rather than snarl at the crude selfishness behind our national fear of immigrants, I stare at my family annals, and read about the lanky children who came here from Ireland, utterly poor, desperately hungry, and ferociously eager.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Bless the troublemakers

    • Libby Hart
    • 30 July 2013
    1 Comment

    Fingers dipped into holy water, the grain of the cross drawn on skin. 'God speaks in silence,' he said with such certainty, as if he knew all things.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Angry ghost of Gillard past

    • Barry Gittins and Jen Vuk
    • 26 July 2013
    10 Comments

    What we have here is a memoir of a woman wronged. And by that I don't mean our former PM. Well, not exclusively, anyway. Journalist Kerry-Anne Walsh may deny either a relationship with Gillard or an outright allegiance, but they're connected where it counts: at the heart of injustice. Both have been let down by a party that has seen much, much better days.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Exploiting Van Nguyen

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 25 July 2013
    7 Comments

    Many Australians feel ownership of Nguyen's story, who was executed for drug trafficking in Singapore in 2005. Khoa Do more than most Australian filmmakers has the moral authority to tell that story without being accused of exploitation. Yet it is hard not to sympathise with the objections of Nguyen's family to Do's SBS new miniseries. Which mother would want public property made of her private grief?

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Journey to the margins

    • Marlene Marburg and Grant Fraser
    • 23 July 2013
    2 Comments

    They follow a star, stirring light in their hearts more than the sky, to the margins, where even goats lose their footing. They make a silent journey, growing in hope that the child within and the Child without will recognise each other.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Conversations about a damaged marriage

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 18 July 2013

    Jesse and Celine head out to enjoy a final night in Greece. In conversation, the fray and fineness of their relationship are revealed. Discussions of philosophy and art illuminate ways in which their individual worldviews impact on their lived reality. They land in a hotel, where the conversation goes from intimate, to pragmatic, to something akin to exorcism.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Bookworm skinned by kin and Kindle

    • Gillian Bouras
    • 17 July 2013
    23 Comments

    Knowing I was going to spend six months in Greece, I arranged for a trunk of books to be sent over. My illiterate mother-in-law was stupefied: 'So many books! Can't you sell some of them?' I should have known she'd react like this, as during her one visit to Melbourne she'd told me roundly that too much reading was the cause of my prematurely grey hair and my need to wear glasses.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Trying hard not to die

    • Belinda Rule
    • 16 July 2013
    1 Comment

    Green and stony hills rise like mesa, thin and steep, like the holes in Swiss cheese inverted. A narrow road winds up and down and around. We have to hurry. My tires plough the verge: dirt falls to nothing ... Someone else is in the car: who?

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