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Love Wins- but what a journey!

I am filled with such mixed emotions today now that we have Marriage Equality finally…it has been such a long road and the end result is an amazing one we must never forget how damaging this has been for so many in the LGBTQI community. Putting our community through a postal vote and making this issue one for people that have no vested interest in who I marry was demoralizing and degrading for many.

This has been a long and at times terribly negative few months that bought up memories that I had thought that I had moved on from with early days of coming out and homophobia that still exists today…add to that the smug Liberals touting the historic win and how they had made this happen and how positive it really was, when in fact we saw so much hate, sadness and anxiety throughout the community.

Why did we have to spend over $100 million to get this result when all other issues the need to be legislated on get dealt with by the people that we have elected to deal with them.

It also fascinates me that after saying he would vote with the will of his constituents and after a resounding 75% voted yes, Tony Abbott made a quick exit yesterday when the final vote occurred.  Even after he had spent most of the day supporting all of the stalling tactics of ridiculous amendments that were being presented by the right wing of the party.  In the end he did not have the guts to do what he said he would do, and after this survey was thrust on us by him and his right wing cronies.

I am so pleased and proud that I now have the chance to marry my love and partner of the last 35 years when and if we choose to but I want to also remember all those who have not survived to see this happen…we must remember that this has been a long, hard fight and whilst we celebrate we need to honor and support all those in the community that have struggled through the last months..there has been damage done.

Today we celebrate and rejoice but always remember the history of what it has taken to get us here! xxxx

#loveislove #marriageequality

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One of the photos halfway through the campaign with gorgeous friends and 2 of my beautiful grandsons.

Call Me By Your Name – a brilliant new film by Luca Guadagino

I have the great pleasure to see lots of films and I have seen some great films this year but on Friday I had the great pleasure to see a film that for me is the best that I have seen this year!

It’s the early 1980s. Elio (Timothée Chalamet) is living an idyllic existence in Italy with his parents. One summer, his charmed life is disturbed by Oliver (Armie Hammer), who comes to spend six weeks with the family, helping Elio’s father. They are six weeks that will change Elio’s life forever.

Based on Andre Aciman’s novel, it’s a romance overwhelming in its intensity, a heart that swells until it has to burst and is cinematic-ally beautiful.

Elio (Chalamet) is 17 years old and living in the Italian countryside with his parents (Michael Stuhlbarg and Amira Casar). Handsome, but more boyish than he perhaps believes, Elio is confident and smart, liked by everyone who meets him. Every room he enters is his. But he is thrown off balance by the arrival of Oliver (Hammer), a twentysomething who has come to stay to assist Elio’s father in his work. Oliver looks like the American ideal distilled into a single man. And with his charm, looks and presence outstripped, Elio is immediately transfixed and consumed with Oliver.

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Guadagnino’s telling of the development of this romance, which changes both parties, is simple yet complex on so many levels.  He fills every scene with life. Trees are heavy with fruit; people are always eating; the chirping of crickets a constant soundtrack.  Long summer days melt away with a gentle routine of swimming, cycling and time doing nothing.

The screenplay, written by James Ivory, is elegant and full of small surprises. The level of attention given to even the smallest of characters means so many of them have an impact even with minimal screen time — Elio’s brief girlfriend breaks your heart with a handful of lines with her presence, vulnerability and sincerity. The few vocal emotional outpourings are powerful and earned — a final paternal monologue by Stuhlbarg  late in the film is as verbose as the film gets and its impact is immense (bring tissues). But much is conveyed in the many silences which are entrusted to an excellent cast – the looks and all that is left unsaid.

Chalamet is the centre and he gives the kind of performance that immediately sends you to Google to find out where the hell this kid came from, because he gives a performance that will stay with you long after the lights of the cinema have come up. All Elio’s teenage emotions are raw on Chalamet’s skin. He plays him as a person still forming, not scared by his feelings but surprised. In a film in which every performance is terrific, Chalamet makes the rest look like they’re acting. He alone would make the film worth watching, but he’s just one of countless reasons.

Armie Hammer brings a beautifully, complex and at time unreadable to Oliver and his connection with all of the people who come into his orbit make for another stand out performance in this film.

This is a film that’s  full of joy but also emotionally devastating, with deeply affecting performances. A romantic masterpiece that you will long remember, think about and dissect.

If you are going to see one film this Christmas (it opens on Boxing Day) then this is the film you must see.

Trailer for Call My By Your Name

Novotel Karon Beach – a great family stay!

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We have just finished a week’s vacation at the Novotel in Karon Beach. This is our second stay here and the hotel is still as good as it was when we first stayed here 3 years ago. The family was 5 adults, one teenager and 4 children aged between 1 and 6. We booked three rooms and had a great, safe time here. The staff were always helpful – especially when we were dealing with crying infants.

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We purchased two ‘ACCOR Advantage plus’ cards (and got a third complimentary one) so the room prices were very good value. The ‘buy one get one’ deals at the restaurants also made it a relatively cheap experience. Staff had no problems dealing with the cards although we had to sign three bills. If you read the conditions for this service and know how it works, it can be very useful when travelling in Asia and the savings with a family of this size really add up over a week.

The location of the hotel is one of its best assets, being a 10 minutes ride from Patong and a 5 minute walk to Karon Beach. We were able to visit the ‘full-on’ life of Patong and return to the safe environment of the hotel, when the kids had had enough. We ended up investing in a baby sitter for the two littlest children which made the two trips to Patong much more enjoyable.

The white colour scheme of the hotel seems designed to emphasise the contrast with the hustle and bustle of Patong. Being so close to Karon Beach is also a bonus as there are lots of shops (for sodas, laundry services and pharmacies). This is a busy tourist area in itself and easier to visit but does not have the same full on atmosphere as Patong and is easier to get around and no where near as crowded which makes it a nice walk when you have had enough time at the pool.

The rooms were set up for the young children with rollout beds, soft toys and chocolates for them on arrival. The food choices in the restaurants always included a kids menu (chips, nuggets, pizza etc) so their eating was not a problem and they really enjoyed the resort as it is really set up for families and caters for them really well.

Unfortunately most of the family, except me and grandson number 2,  caught a stomach bug on the second day and over the seven nights, at least one of us was vomiting at any one time. It as also the wet season which meant leaving the hotel was not easy, so most of our time was spent in the hotel. This was not a problem as the kids club and pool kept the children occupied and we all enjoyed having down time with still being able to keep the children entertained and happy.

The only downside to the hotel is the lack of food options for adults once you enjoy the breakfast, which was really good. There appears to be one kitchen for the whole hotel and the same food appears on the menu of all of the restaurants. The nightly buffet was perhaps the worse, as most of the nights it was held indoors due to the rain. The number of food varieties was poor and they had low numbers of staff, which meant that often the food stations were not refilled quickly. The worse was the ‘Italian night’ – which I will not even try to describe because it was poorly created, the food was unimaginative and there was very little choice.  We had no option on a number of nights but to partake in the buffet and it was the only negative in our stay at the hotel.

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There are a number of beachfront restaurants over the road. These looked good, and we would have eaten here, but with with our stomach bugs it was easier not to and just enjoy the hotel.

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Overall this is a good hotel, especially if you have children who would love the kids club, the kids pool and the friendly atmosphere that the staff create.  Every morning the breakfast restaurant is visited by a Minion and both Xander and Kyen were over the moon and loved the attention that they received with the visitor. It is these little things the kids loved and made it a great place for the family to be staying at.

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We then packed the kids back to Perth and Trevor and I headed to the JW Marriott Hotel on Khao Lak which took us to another level and when comparing things like the buffets, the chefs from the Novotel should jump in a can and take some lessons from the amazing offerings at the Marriott. Although we only did 2 buffet dinners they were top class, great ranges, professional service and amazing value…but more about the Marriott in my next post. But I suppose that is the difference between a 4 star and a 5 star resort you expect and we certainly received amazing service and food options at the Marriott.

http://www.novotel.com/gb/hotel-8825-novotel-phuket-karon-beach-resort-and-spa/index.shtml?xtor=SEC-706-goo-%5bppc-nov-mar-goo-au-en-th-bro-sear-th-loc%5d-%5bnov-v7424-phuket-8825-karon%5d-S-%5b%252Bnovotel%2520%252Bkaron%2520%252Bbeach%5d

Toughen Up Princess!

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Here we are on a continuous roll call of arguments, counter-arguments, vile attacks and vitriol as we head to November and the results of the Marriage Equality postal survey that we ‘had’ to have.

And here I sit, following the last few years of discussions about an issue that really does not affect everyone and I find myself beginning to struggle with all of the negative words I see, articles that are printed and negativity that is being presented on a daily basis.

I really thought that I was much more resilient than this and if those politicians on the “right’ think we should just all toughen up and deal with it then they are obviously coming from a privileged white middle class male space, where they have not had to deal head on with hate speech, divisive comments and so much more.

As we are more and more connected through social media it is hard to miss the negative messages that seem to seep into even the filtered content.  It really is disheartening to see the misinformation and outright lies that are being peddled to try and get people to vote to stop two people who love each other from getting married.

Of course that is because if they just talked about that people would not engage, instead they have to wrap their arguments up in safe schools, children, ‘stolen generations’, religious freedom and so much more.  It fascinates me that we have to dress something so simple up in complex, confusing lies.

As is said in my previous post we need to remember that we are all human beings and we all deserve respect, thoughtful discussion and a sense of fairness when coming to the decision on which way we want to vote.  I may not agree with people who want to vote no but I will never attack them for that right.  We are a democracy and as flawed as this whole process is, I wish for a more measured, fair and respectful debate!

My partner and I, after 35 years together, may not choose to get married when it finally becomes legal for us to do so, but we will always fight for the right for other same sex couples to get married because at the end of the day it is all about equality and nothing more!yes

I would like to say that I could ‘toughen up princess’, but the daily attacks and negatives have started to have an affect on me, and other people around me, so I am quite happy that I am leaving for annual leave on Monday for 3 weeks so that I can have a rest from this debate for a while and hopefully come back with some of that resilience restored so I can continue to talk, listen and engage with people on why a YES vote is so important.

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Having A Conversation About Marriage Equality

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A fabulous photo that was taken for a story I did recently on Marriage Equality for Community News Group.

As a person who has been in a relationship with my same-sex partner for over 35 years I have from time to time discussed and thought about marriage.  I suppose when I reflect we go against the grain on some levels.  We co-parented 2 children with 2 amazing lesbians many years ago and since that time we have seen our children grow into amazing young adults.  We have walked our daughter down the aisle when she got married and we have welcomed 5 grand children into our lives.

The issue of marriage equality has been front and centre for a number of years now and we have had the issue of getting married raised by our oldest grand child.  It was about  2 years ago that our 11 year old grandson said to me, “Poppy why can’t you and Grandad get married?”

Out of the mouths of children, I thought.  A child that only saw 2 people who love each other and did not understand why those 2 people, if they chose, could not get married.

This bought on a great conversation about marriage and the lay of the land at that time here in Australia.

Now here we sit at the beginning of and the further discussion that has been happening out there for the past few years and finally momentum may be turning the tide to get a positive resolution.

It always astounds me that these sorts of issues and debates bring forth so much negativity and vile words and that we cannot conduct these sorts of discussions in a sane, rational and respectful way.  But I also remember back to the days when we were protesting for equal rights in the country and the negative comments and actions of people who did not understand equality.

Whilst I have a preference for those that we vote in to run our country to be the ones who legislate this change without spending $122 million on a non-binding postal survey, I also understand the reality of our political system currently.  We have a PM who is bound by the right wing of his party and if he allowed a conscience vote then he could be rolled from the top job.

It is really quite funny when you look at the roll call of countries that currently have marriage equality in their countries and you then look at Australia and contemplate  how a country that for many years set much the bar with comprehensive and committed societal change could be so far behind the eight ball.  Are our conservatives just digging their heals in on a matter that really does not affect them at all? Or do they really believe the horrible hate speech and vile words that they constantly spout for a 5 second grab on the nightly news!

I think the right wing politicians are evenly spread on this and if this postal survey goes ahead and the Yes vote wins we will see how many of those politicians actually follow the will of the people.  That will be interesting to see.

Now that over 90,000 new people, most of them under 25 enrolling to vote I would think that some of those conservative politicians will begin to get worried as the next election looms as we all know that many of the younger voters do not tend to vote with the conservative side of politics but it was our right wing pollies who wanted this vote.

The following is from the Equality website and it makes some really strong points when having some of those respectful conversations with those people in your lives who may not have thought about this issue and why it matters to you.

 

Some handy tips to talk to your friends, family and co-workers about why equality matters to you.

 

We are now closer to winning marriage equality than at any point in Australian history. We’ve come too far to stop now!

To achieve equality for all Australians, we will need to talk to more people in more ways than ever before. Research shows real life conversations are incredibly powerful. They’re what change hearts and minds.

Moreover, the people you know — whether friends or family, work mates, people at church, your local sporting club – will be far more influenced by their personal conversation with you than by any advert or message they see from an organisation.

That’s why right now, marriage equality supporters are igniting thousands of conversations all across Australia. Some of the people we talk to will already be on board — that’s fantastic, let’s encourage them to take action! Others won’t have thought about it much yet, or won’t be sure where they stand. 

Research shows only a small group of Australians firmly oppose marriage equality. It’s actually something two-thirds of the population support!

But lots of people who may show ‘soft’ support for marriage equality still have questions. The evidence from overseas tells us that by listening, sharing our experiences, and approaching this as a conversation rather than a furious debate, we have a much better chance of bringing as many people as possible along with us.And with that, convincing our MPs not to delay equality any longer.

Now it is over to you.

It’s time to have a conversation. We have some information below to help you, but it is a suggested guide only. (You can also download this information as a PDF here.)

Personal conversations can sometimes be confronting. But they can also be incredibly respectful, beneficial and even joyful. Creating an open space for people to reflect, ask questions and share their concerns means we’re campaigning in-line with the values we stand for — respect, dignity and love. And it means we’re making this journey more positive and unifying. 

Invite some people around, visit your grandparents, or set-up a meeting with your church or community group and chat with them about why you believe in marriage equality.

Now is the time to bring all those people in our lives who do not necessarily think that this is an issue that relates to them on our journey and to encourage everyone who can to vote YES and support those people in their lives which this vote is an important step in our lives!

PIQFF – A second year of great Queer Cinema on its way!

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I have been blessed in my working life to have done a range of amazing roles and over the past 22 years of working at the WA AIDS Council have directly worked in a range of different positions.  One of the main focuses, other than my direct work with people with HIV has been working on a range of fundraising initiatives, most notably STYLEAID.

One of the new areas that I am excited to be working on and developing is the Perth International Queer Film Festival.  After a sell out year last year I have expanded it from 6 to 9 nights.

Once again the Festival will run at The Backlot Perth and this year we have a free satellite screening of the Mexican  film “Velociraptor” with Festival principal sponsor Curtin University on 19th September on campus.

As Artistic Director I have been fortunate to have sat through many hours of both feature films and short films to put the program for this year together.  With films from 15 countries this year the program explores LGBTQI experiences from a varied and diverse range of lived experiences.

It was always my aim to present a wide range of stories that are of course entertaining but also have strong narratives about what it is like to be LGBTQI in 2017.

For the second year for the Festival I linked in with film makers all over the world through the Film Festival Portal “Film Freeway” that enabled film makers to submit their feature and short films for consideration to be included in the Festival this year!

The amazing thing about this process is that I received over 1400 films for consideration. This just shows how many film makers are keenly working on expanding their vision of LGBTQI issues and stories.  Many of the films submitted where short films, hence my decision to do a night that is just made up of some the best short films submitted but to also include at least 1 short film with each feature during the Festival.

Tickets are starting to sell in the lead up and opening night is almost sold out, which is really exciting!

So now to the films for this year.  Opening night features  the world premier of ‘Discreet’ from director Travis Matthews that tells the story of a drifter who reconnects with his abuser from when he was a child and wrestles with his sexuality whilst also plotting his revenge.  This is a dark, moody film that features amazing performances from the cast.

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Opening night (Wednesday September 13) will also feature the Iranian film “12 Eyes Gauging the City”.  This surreal short film follows 12 gay men in Iran surrounded by loss and anger and is a powerful statement on the current Iranian landscape for gay men.

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Those attending opening night will also receive a glass of Billecart Champagne on arrival and at the end of the night will receive a special gift bag filled with some amazing gifts!

https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300040&bof=1

Click on the link above to purchase your tickets to opening night.

The rest of the Festival features:

Retake – a taut psychological drama following a lonely, middle aged man who hires a male sex worker to recreate a road trip from his past.  This film will be accompanied by the German short film “Trade Queen”.

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https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300047&bof=1

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BWOY makes its Australian Premiere and tells the story of Brad, who, after the death of his son, becomes entangled in a chaotic and passionate online love affair with Yenny, a young Jamaican man.

Screening along side this feature are “The Magic Hedge” and ‘Ruptures’.

https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300053&bof=1

The Saturday night during the Festival sees the romantic comedy ‘Signature Move’. Zyanab is a young Muslim Pakistani woman who moves back in with her mother following the breakup of a relationship.  The film follows Zyanab as she falls in love with a female wrestler.

Mai and Alone Together screen with Signature Move.

https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300060&bof=1

Sunday 17 September sees our Short Film Festival as part of PIQFF.

Featuring 10 short films that explore many aspects of LGBTQI life journeys.  All of the films featured are Australian Premieres.

The short films screening are:

NIQI – tracing the life of transgender ballet dancer Niqi.

Mum, I’m Back – A woman returns, after 40 years to the village where she was born to attend her mothers funeral.

Crack Open My Head – deals with trans and queer self-espression, and presents Isreal’s queer community’s conflict.

Our Skin – A late night chat takes an emotionally intimate turn in this beautifully shot black and white study of a transgender woman and an ex-Marine suffering PTSD.

A Tale with Christ and Jesus – Christ is a lonely young man who has not overcome the loss of his mother and the memories of a violent childhood. Jesus, a student who still lives with his parents, with an intolerant overprotective mother and very different to Christ’s past.

Always – this Australian film explores a young mans journey caring for his dying mother and the consequences of his life when she passes.

Elevator Love Story – a story about attraction and the inner dialogue we create with ourselves.

Breakfast – when a young man suffering from anorexia is pressured to eat breakfast by his boyfriend, the couple are thrust into an other world.

Naughty Amelia Jane -A short film that is a satire of the hilarious hypocrisy of society towards anything that goes against the conventional social order of things.

Little You – exploring what it truly takes to make a family.

https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300063&bof=1

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Centre of My World premiered at the Melbourne Queer Film Festival in May. This German/Austrian co-production tells the story of a young man who returns to school after a summer spent trying to dodge family conflicts and begins to questions his feelings toward Nicholas, a new classmate and the evolution of his relationship with his best friend Kat.

Also screening with this is the amazing experimental visual short Iridesence, which exposes how society needs to label a person by their sexuality, through dance and interpretive movements that replace dialogue.

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https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300067&bof=1

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FLUIDO – what promises to be one of the most controversial films of this years Festival, we find ourselves transported to a science fiction film set in the 2060’s in a world in which HIV/AIDS has been full eradicated. In some people, however, the virus has mutated into a gene which can be extracted to create a new psychoactive drug.

Cruising Elsewhere films with FLUIDO.

https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300069&bof=1

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Satyavati  is a work of fiction with a primary focus is to let the audience understand that lesbianism is not a disease that needs to be cured and the film maker aims to stand a story of example of why we need to understand each other on levels of humanity more than inclining our existence on misconstrued and judgmental rules.

The short films (A)Typical Couple and The 3rd Try screen with Satyvati.

(A)Typical Couple is about a typical day in a typical life of a typical couple trying to communicate their way through their typical relationship.

The 3rd Try follows Lorie and Ryan as both women navigate their relationship.

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https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300072&bof=1

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Closing night features the Australian Premiere of Fabio Massa’s “Aefetto Domino” – a film about life and its transformation. It is a story of Lorenzo who receives sad news about his health that will change his existence and its domino effect on his life and the lives of people he loves.

The powerful UK short film Partings will screen on closing night and tells the story of an elderly couple, where time has stopped after a lifetime together as they prepare to say goodbye.

https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=300077&bof=1

As you can see there are lots of amazing films to partake in this year and by attending you are also supporting the fundraising efforts of the WA AIDS Council.

PIQFF promises to once again present some of the best new Queer Films from around the world.

Now what to wear to walk the red carpet on opening night!

Follow the news on PIQFF on FaceBook – https://www.facebook.com/PIQFilmFestival/?ref=bookmarks

 

The Other Side of the Moon – Dining Brilliance @ Pullman Bunker Bay!

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The wine barrels beckon

Recently we, along with our friends Ken and Karen spent the weekend at the Pullman and decided to try dinner at the hotel restaurant – The Other Side of the Moon.  We decided that after a day of hitting the sights of Margaret River, exploring the beaches on the coast and doing some great wine tastings and a dinner at the Pullman was in order and the experience did not disappoint.  It was a great evening  and was a very high standard from the time we walked into the restaurant until the end of the meal.

The staff were very friendly (in a very Australian way) but that did not distract from the quality of their service. They were attentive without being intrusive. The only problem was they had no idea how to light a fire.  It was hilarious watching the staff set alight some newspaper and see the fire go out in a minute as the big logs would not catch. But really the service has raised up since our last visit and we could not fault them at all.

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Incredible Pork Belly

The food was of a very high standard and we enjoyed the soup of the day, the pork belly and for main course the kangaroo loin (served on mash and thinly sliced beetroot which added a subtle complexity to the dish  . The barramundi was a real highlight and was very tasty and cooked to perfection.

Barra and Kangaroo with divine carrots

I usually only eat two courses at dinner, but the desert menu was so tempting that I ended with creme brûlée which was excellent.  The others on the table enjoyed a stunning champagne pavlova with pineapple and passion fruit which was a real shoe stopper.  The desert chef came out and introduced himself to us.  He gave us a bonus extra serve of macaroons which were scrumptious and are made fresh daily – the pistachio and olive oil were amazing.

The most amazing final courses and the platter is a little treat from the pastry chef from our last night at Pullman Bunker Bay!

I see forum comments on Trip Advisor about the high price here but we  found it to be very good value for a top class meal. If you want to eat cheaply, go to a pizza shop in Dunsborough.  If you want a high standard meal, eat at The Other side of the Moon.

Sites from around the region!

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An Iconic end of an era!

It has been a week since the curtain fell on the final STYLEAID and what a week it has been.

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Every year when the dust settles and sleep has been caught up I reflect on the journey to date and this year it is tinged with both joy and sadness.

Joy because the night was such an amazing look back and celebration of what we have achieved over the past 20 years and also sad because it is the last STYLEAID as we have grown to know and love.

STYLEAID has certainly been on an amazing journey over the past 20 years and in that time the event has managed to raise over $1.6 million for the important work of the WA AIDS Council.

Each year I have been blessed to have been supported internally at the AIDS Council with the most amazing staff and volunteers and with the most talented and hard working STYLEAID Committee who have each year worked to make the event a memorable one!

For the final STYLEAID we moved into the new Crown Ballroom in Crown Towers and it was the most amazing space to put the show together in and gave us more room than we have ever had!

When we were planning the night we wanted to go out on a high and bring back a range of elements from previous years whilst still giving the event the edge that we have become famous in creating.

To start the evening people were greeted with 4 Angel boys in black wings taking centre stage and they were then joined by the incomparable Ali Bodycoat who wowed the audience with the most powerful, scene setting songs that raised the roof and set the mood for the night ahead!

Then there was a parade unlike anything we have done before, featuring 20 ICONIC WA Designers and 20 of the top models in WA.  This was followed by a breathtaking performance from the WA Ballet, a drag performance that hit the right note and got the party started at the end of the night, a DVD that reminded the audience about the impact that HIV still has on peoples lives in 2017 and a memorable finale which saw the committee take a final bow.  We were fortunate to once again have DJ Shaun Sandon close the night of with the best music for the guests to dance to and remember the ICONIC finale!

STYLEAID has been instrumental in supporting not just the work of the AIDS Council but also a range of WA designers, emerging designers and new and established models.  All of these elements have been central to the event.

LUX Events created a mind blowing series of 4 runways with central screens that set the mood and Fox and Rabbit created the most amazing flowers for the front row tables and also created a piece for the entrance to the ballroom that had guests oohing in amazement.

This was a fitting finale for STYLEAID and the feedback has been so fabulous and I am grateful to all those who have been involved in the journey so far.

What’s next, was a question that I got all night – WATCH THIS SPACE is all I can say.

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Thanks to the amazing John Koh for the fabulous photographs xx

ICONIC Photographs take center stage

After a triumph last year out at Karrinyup Shopping Center the STYLEAID Photographic Exhibition returned to Center Court last night to showcase the work of 15 talented West Australian photographers.  As you will know Fundraising and events have played a central role in my work at the AIDS Council for the past 20 years and this year the suite of amazing events has continued!

I had a fabulous day at Karrinyup working with an amazing team to get the exhibition ready to open to invited guests. With Annette Hasluck, Bill Wenham, Tania McGuinness, Ben Conroy and the team from LUX Events our day was spent hanging, cleaning, preparing, creating and turning center court into a gallery space for the wonderful photographs.

The theme for STYLEAID this year is ICON and this was also the theme for the exhibition.  Each photograph that was selected represents the photographers’ unique interpretation of the theme.

They are all one off prints and so each one that is purchased gives the person who buys it the knowledge that they are getting an individual piece that no one else will have.

100% of each photograph sold goes back to support the work of the WA AIDS Council thanks to sponsorship from Karrinyup Shopping Centre, AMP Capital, Spice Digital Printing, Plastic Sandwich Company, Vinaceous Wines, Matso’s, San Pellegrino, Hart Black and LUX Events.

Over 100 photographs were submitted for consideration and 40 were selected to be featured at the exhibition.

The theme really resonated with the photographers and also with the guests who attended last nights opening!

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Andrew Shugg and his team from Your Bartender, set up and served libations to guests all night and Styled Notion created another memorable food tasting table.

I was especially taken by the work of Carlos Fernandes, Christine Kopti Dirksz and Richard Matias who all did very different but breath taking interpretations of the theme.

Liam Rhys Jones created 4 very special photographs based around ICONIC fashion designer Alexander McQueen, whilst Shift Creative once again grabbed the theme and created 3 stunning images that reminded of those seeing the photographs of the sensuality and strength of women.

Ryan Ammon went for ICONIC fashion to create his homage to looks through the years, whilst Matt Ranford created 4 images that represented Icons of music – the tape, the CD, the vinyl record and an iPod.

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Nikki-Marie Rogers presented 2 images that challenge gender and societal expectations of what it is to be a lesbian in 2017 with a sensual and powerful representation of 5 young Perth lesbians.

Tristan Jud was another favorite of those in attendance with his clever shots encouraging us all to be our own Icons.  Rounding out the photographers on show were Bharathan Kangatheran, Craig Williams & Shane Newton, Fifi Robinson, Derec Ethan Lee and Michelle Miretha who all put their own personal talented spin on the theme.

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The exhibition will run until July 2nd, so if you are in Karrinyup or even in the area, stop by and have a look.  15 of the photographs were sold on opening night so there are still plenty on offer.

If one takes your fancy give Tania a call at the WA AIDS Council and get your hands on one of the stunning one- off photographs on show.

 

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