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<<August 2014>>
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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: australia, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 163
1. Australia’s Rubber House Produces 8 Adult Swim Promos

Australian animation studio Rubber House has completed a series of bumpers and idents Adult Swim.

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2. Air Australia

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It's always great fun to create a piece of work, simply for your own enjoyment.   
Grabbing some time to experiment with new techniques also keeps your portfolio fresh. 
Air Australia is a promo piece that I'm going to be using for my postcards and prints. 

Please visit my portfolio to see more work.

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3. Simon Bent aka Volume2a

Volume2a on grainedit.com

I love this campaign Volume2a developed for Kubik -  a pop up music venue / art installation held in Melbourne. Working with a modular system they created a layered design that captures the fun and excitement of the event.


Volume2a on grainedit.com

Volume2a on grainedit.com

Volume2a on grainedit.com



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4. When you see the Southern Cross for the first time…


Where have I been?

Around the world, in ninety days.

A research trip for a screenplay that was supposed to be five weeks long where I traveled to Australia and Indonesia turned into so much more. Thanks for your patience while I was away. I’m in the process of understanding all the changes that I’ve been going through and putting words to the experience. Surprisingly I’ve had no jet lag when I returned nearly three weeks ago and am instead working very hard on the screenplay and some film documentaries too. There’s so much to process. The trip was life affirming as well as life changing. You’ve been great supporters of my work and I’m thrilled to have you on this journey with me. One of the places I least expected to go was Mt. Everest, and as fate would have it, while I was there the worst disaster in the history of the storied mountain unfolded. An avalanche took the lives of 16 sherpas. They were family members and friends of the sherpas who trekked with me on the Everest trail. Sometimes stories come to you. This was perhaps the biggest story I’d ever been caught up in and it influenced my entire experience in Nepal, which started off as a humanitarian trip to provide dental care to “yakland” kids (children who live above 10,000 feet) some who are orphaned (due to the ten year civil war there) and some victims of human trafficking. This is but a small a window into one of the unexpected, but wonderful stops on my journey.

I haven’t updated my about page, because I really like the fact that I had written there that one of my dreams was to travel to Indonesia. And it’s so nice when dreams come true. I don’t think I’ll update it with my new dreams yet. It’s nice to savor and celebrate moments like this. *pops the cork off the champagne bottle* *pours you a glass* Now about that stand up comedy routine…




4 Comments on When you see the Southern Cross for the first time…, last added: 6/3/2014
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5. Illustrator Interview – Jennifer Reid

 Okay, I confess I do seem to have an Australia bias at the moment with these interviews! Maybe the universe is telling me I need to visit my final continent! Jennifer Reid is a 12×12 buddy and has her first … Continue reading

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6. Ros Bandt, Grove Music Online

By Warren Burt

We invite you to explore the biography of Australian composer Ros Bandt, as it is presented in Grove Music Online.


Johnson’s Map of Australia. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

(b Geelong, Victoria, 18 Aug 1951). Australian composer, performer, installation and sound artist, instrument inventor, writer, educator, and researcher. Her early education consisted of high school in both Australia and Canada, followed by a BA (1971, Monash University), Dip Ed (1973, Monash), MA (1974, Monash), and PhD (1983, Monash). An interest in experimental music is apparent from her earliest compositions, many of which involve performance in specific places, improvisation, electronics, graphic notation, and the use of self-built and specially built instruments. These include Improvisations in Acoustic Chambers, 1981, and Soft and Fragile: Music in Glass and Clay, 1982. By 1977 an interest in sound installation and sound sculpture had become well established in her work (Winds and Circuits, Surfaces and Cavities), and is an area in which she has continued to the present day, having presented nearly 50 sound installations worldwide.

Bandt has also been involved in creating electro-acoustic works, often in collaboration with broadcasting organizations; work for or with radio forms a significant portion of her output. Many of these works, while using real-world elements, take a more narrative or illustrative approach to their material compared to the abstractionism of much electro-acoustic work. An electro-acoustic work such as Mungo (1992), made of sounds collected in the Lake Mungo region of New South Wales, presents soundscape as illustration; that is, the sounds are presented as important in themselves, rather than as material for formalistic musical development. In other electro-acoustic works, such as Thrausmata: Ancient Greek Fragments, 1997, the concern for narrative, and presenting endangered elements of the soundscape (in this case, disappearing languages) emerge as paramount. Other electro-acoustic works present sounds from specific environmental sites, such as Genesis (1983), for microtonally-tuned zither and pre-recorded speed-changed zither, both recorded in the same large resonant environment, and Stack (2000), made entirely from sounds collected from a large cylindrical tunnel exhaust stack in Melbourne. Of her compositions for instruments, Ocean Bells (1982) uses the Flagong, a glass instrument made by Bandt modelled on Harry Partch’s Cloud Chamber Bowls. The sculpture Aeolian Harps (1987) was a large wind powered string instrument, which was also recorded and those sounds used in a number of other works. Her recent Tragoudia II uses the tarhu, a 12-string spike fiddle (4 strings played, 8 sympathetic) invented by Australian luthier Peter Biffin, as well as pre-recorded sounds recorded in Crete. Tin Rabbit (2009–10) for wind-up rabbits, pre-recorded soundscape, music boxes, and tin suitcase shows a more whimsical side of her installation work. Free Diving (2008) for recorder orchestra and pre-recorded soundscape shows an integration of her interests in environmental sound with that of composing for traditional instruments.

Bandt has been equally active in collaborative work with musicians, dancers, and artists. She has been part of the groups La Romanesca (early music performance), LIME (improvisation), Back to Back Zithers (cross-cultural improvisation and composition), and Carte Blanche (a digital media duo with Brigid Burke), among others. She has also worked on many collaborative projects, such as Hear the Dance, See the Music (1989), a collaborative music-dance-technology performance; The White Room (1992), an installation for Warsaw Autumn, produced with Vineta Lagzdina, Warren Burt, Ernie Althoff, and Alan Lamb; and an ongoing series of collaborations with the German sound artist Johannes S. Sistermanns.

Bandt has written several books, including Sound Sculpture: Intersections in Sound and Sculpture in Australian Artworks (Sydney, 2001), the first comprehensive treatment of this kind of work in Australia. With Michelle Duffy and Dolly MacKinnon, she edited the anthology Hearing Places: Interdisciplinary Writings on Sound, Place, Time and Culture (Cambridge, 2007). She is also the director of the Australian Sound Design Project, the first comprehensive website and on-line resource, documenting over 130 Australian sound designers, composers, and sound sculptors. She has received grants from the Australian Research Council, The Australia Council, the Victorian Ministry for the Arts, the Australian Network for Art and Technology, and a number of other organizations. Her work has been broadcast on, and commissioned by ORF Austria, WDR Germany, ABC Australia, and Japanese Radio and TV, among others. Recordings of her work are available on the Move, New Albion, Ars Acustica, Sonic Art Gallery, and Au Courant labels, among others.


  • Sounds In Space: Windchimes and Sound Sculptures (Melbourne, 1985)
  • Creative Approaches to Interactive Technology in Sound Art (Geelong, 1990)
  • Sound Sculpture, Intersections in Sound and Sculpture in Australian Artworks (Sydney, 2001)
  • Edited with M. Duffy and D. MacKinnon: Hearing Places: Interdisciplinary Writings on Sound, Place, Time and Culture (Cambridge, 2007) [incl. CD]
  • The Australian Sound Design Project


  • M. Atherton: ‘Ros Bandt’, Australian Made Australian Played (Sydney, 1990), 90–92
  • B. Broadstock: ‘Ros Bandt’, Sound Ideas – Australian Composers born since 1950 (Sydney, 1995), 42–7
  • J. Jenkins: ‘Ros Bandt’, 22 Australian Composers (Melbourne, 1988), 9–21
  • A. McLennan: ‘A brief topography of Australian Sound Art and experimental broadcasting’, Continuum, viii (1994), 302–18 (electronic arts in Australia issue, ed. N. Zurbrugg)
  • R. Coyle: Sound In space (Sydney, 1995), 8–16
  • P. Read: ‘Silo Stories’, Haunted Earth (Sydney, 2003), 93–110
  • Ros Bandt website

Oxford Music Online is the gateway offering users the ability to access and cross-search multiple music reference resources in one location. With Grove Music Online as its cornerstone, Oxford Music Online also contains The Oxford Companion to Music, The Oxford Dictionary of Music, and The Encyclopedia of Popular Music.

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7. Ricky Swallow, Grove Art Online

By Rex Butler

We invite you to explore the biography of Australian artist Ricky Swallow, as it is presented in Grove Art Online.


The Victorian College of The Arts. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

(b San Remo, Victoria, 1974). Australian conceptual artist, active also in the USA. Swallow came to prominence only a few years after completing his Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, by winning the prestigious Contempora 5 art prize in 1999. Swallow could be said to have ushered in a wholly new style in Australian art after the appropriation art of the 1980s and 1990s. His first mature work was a hammerhead shark made out of plaid, later followed by such objects as bicycles and telescopes made out of plastic. These were not hyperreal simulacra in the manner of Pop artist George Segal or sculptor Ron Mueck. Rather, in remaking these objects in altered materials, Swallow wanted to open up a whole series of associations around memory and obsolescence. In one of the works for Contempora 5, Model for a Sunken Monument (1999), Swallow made a vastly scaled-up version of the mask Darth Vader wore in the Star Wars movies, fabricated out of sectioned pieces of fibreboard, which produced the effect of a melting or compression or indeed a diffraction, as though the piece were being looked at under water. Swallow also made a series of works that featured death as a subject, including iMan Prototypes (2001), which involved a number of skulls made of coloured plastic that looked like computer casings, and Everything is Nothing (2003), in which a carved wooden skull lies on its side inside an Adidas hood. In 2005, he was selected as Australia’s representative at the Venice Biennale, for which he produced Killing Time (2005). In this piece Swallow carved an extraordinary still-life of a table covered with a series of objects (fish, lobster, lemon), seemingly out of a single piece of Jelutong maple, in the manner of the Dutch vanitas painters of the 17th century. Swallow’s artistic lineage would undoubtedly include Jasper Johns, in particular his 1960 casting of two beer cans in bronze. His work could also be compared to contemporary Australian artist Patricia Piccinini and international artist Tom Friedman. Without a doubt, Swallow belongs to a generation of Australian artists who make work outside of any national tradition and without reference to the by-now exhausted critical questions associated with Post-modernism.


  • E. Colless: ‘The World Ends When Its Parts Wear Out’, Memory Made Plastic (exh. cat., Sydney, Darren Knight Gallery, 2000)
  • J. Patton: Ricky Swallow: Field Recordings (Roseville, 2005)
  • A. Gardner: ‘Art in the Face of Fame: Ricky Swallow’s Refection of Reputation’, Reading Room: A Journal of Art and Culture, i (2007), pp. 60–79
  • A. Geczy: ‘Overdressed for the Prom’, Broadsheet, xxxvi/3 (2007), pp. 60–79

Oxford Art Online offers access to the most authoritative, inclusive, and easily searchable online art resources available today. Through a single, elegant gateway users can access — and simultaneously cross-search — an expanding range of Oxford’s acclaimed art reference works: Grove Art Online, the Benezit Dictionary of Artists, the Encyclopedia of Aesthetics, The Oxford Companion to Western Art, and The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms, as well as many specially commissioned articles and bibliographies available exclusively online.

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8. If You Were Me and Lived in … Australia, by Carole P. Roman | Dedicated Review

Here’s a bonza (first-rate) addition to award-winning author Carole P. Roman's fun and informative series, If You Were Me and Lived in …. This time readers are introduced to the sunburned country found down under in the southern hemisphere, Australia.

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9. ‘Keep It Clever Australia’ Uses Animation To Promote Public Investment in Education

While animation is most often used as an entertainment form, it can also used to educate, and increasingly, to advocate for social causes. We saw animation yesterday for a gun safety PSA in the United States, and now we turn to Australia where Universities Australia is promoting its Keep It Clever Australia campaign to stress the value of public funding for university education and research.

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10. Writing honestly from your true passions

The myth that publishers have stacks of manuscripts  and that writers have to line up in a long queue was deflated by Jennifer Bacia during her talk at the Gold Coast Writers Association meeting . ‘Actually, that is not the case’ she stated. According to Jennifer, publishers are always looking for something that will make […]

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11. “Man Spaghetti” by Felix Colgrave

If you were planning to sleep tonight, then you may want to avoid this exquisitely creepy short:

It was made by Australian animator Felix Colgrave:

“When I made this film, I was exploring the idea of how living things are made of matter, and when we die and rot and we’re returned to the earth and yadda yadda, and then that matter then goes on to build other living things. Basically I cut out the middle man, and made the matter reorganise itself into new things the moment the consciousness died. Then i put them in onesies and gave the whole thing a silly name.”

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12. Guest Post: Starlight Children's Aid

Tania Elizabeth is a mother first and foremost and the author of The Tier of Eternal Grace. Book One The Moon Clearing was released earlier this year. Book Two The Mirror’s Shadow will be released about September. Book Three will then follow in the early part of 2014.

The Tier of Eternal Grace is a captivating fantasy of magic and passion, wound into the truths of reality that will enchant readers with its depiction of the faerie realm, and the exploits of the faeries themselves. Book One of the series The Moon Clearingis an immersive tale of mysticism and adventure, of spiritual and sensual intent that shall enrapture your every sense.

Beyond the boundary that separates the mundane and earthly planes from the divine lies Eterna Fadas, a place ruled by extraordinary beings, lithe and human-like in appearance, yet ethereal in their grace and beauty, and sensuous in nature.
"I have existed always! Where I began I do not know, for all I know is just as I am today!"
As Queen, Tatiana was thought to have lived a life of opulence, her faith and beliefs her endearing essence. Why then was it so, that beneath the picture of perfection laid torments and terrors even she dare not explain. Being She came with its prices paid. Being She came with a deal; a contract in which she was to relinquish herself to a rogue of unmerciful fury. Would this be the end of all she know? Would this be the end of her existence?

Aside from her writing and her three angels, Tania is also an advocate for the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Being a mother herself and having seen firsthand what some of these children are dealt with on a day to day basis, and yet seeing the strength and courage they each maintain, Tania felt the need to not only donate her time, but to also help raise much needed funds.

The Starlight Children’s Foundation transforms the experience of hospitalization and treatment for seriously ill children and their families. Starlight is the only children’s charity with a permanent, physical presence in very major pediatric hospital in the country.

Every minute of every day a child is admitted to hospital in Australia. For thousands of these children what happens next is the diagnosis of a serious or chronic illness that changes their life, and the lives of their families, forever.

This is where Starlight steps in - delivering a range of innovative programs, built on the World Health Organization’s social model of health, to support the well-being and resilience of these seriously ill children and their families.

Starlight programs are integral to the total care of seriously ill children - while the health professionals focus on treating the illness, Starlight is there to lift the spirits of the child - giving them the opportunity to laugh and play and be a child again
About the Author, Tania Elizabeth
Like each and every one of us, Tania's own journey has been one of trials and tribulations, of Love and of passions; and the dissolutions of it. Heartache, sorrows, smiles and laughter always seeming. Through the writing of this book and the words of Tatiana, Tania has found a peace within and learnt the true meaning of "I LOVE ME!"

A message from Tania

I am asking for all’s assistance.
To give to others is to give to oneself, and 
Help us to raise funds for the Starlight Children's Foundation, which supports terminally ill children and their families.
There are two ways in which people can help.
It is very simple. 

By simply hosting, reviewing or interviewing myself/my book via a blog post, amazon, newspaper, radio, TV within a 21day window frame, between the dates of Friday 12th of April and Friday the 3rd of May. For every appearance, I will be donating $1 to the Starlight Children’s Foundation. 

If any of you could help, I would be so grateful. If you could connect me with anyone else who would be happy to interview, do a short post or review on myself/my book, I would be ever so grateful more.

I am also asking for donations, even $1, which you may do direct via this link.
You may also follow our progress on the Starlight Author's Aid Facebook Page.

We are looking at making this an annual event. This year it is based upon myself, though every year after, we will base it upon another upcoming author.
So please share and pass this along to all. Let's make this a huge affair and raise much needed funds for a very worthy cause.

My heartfelt thanks to all.
Love, Blessings and Faerie Kisses always xo

BARNES AND NOBLE  http://bit.ly/ZJwcnH

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13. Animated Fragments #23

It’s the return of a readers’ favorite: Animated Fragments. These clips celebrate the briefest of the brief: short animated experiments, work-in-progress clips, advertising pieces, animated GIFs, trailers and and small pieces that otherwise wouldn’t have a home on Cartoon Brew. For more, visit the Animated Fragments archive.

“La zona blanca” by Reza Riahi (Iran/France)

“Louis” by Mathilde Parquet (France)

“Amoo Lucky” teaser for Riz Mouj Co. directed by Mohammad Kheirandish/Tuca Animation Studio (Iran)

“Cake” (WIP) by Anna P

“NoName Walk Cycle” by Ariel Victor (Australia)

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14. G’Day Mate! ‘Maggie’ Vaults Down Under to Australia!

GRAIN VALLEY, Kan. – Folks around here are still searching for the right words to express how thrilled they are that Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is on sale now at Australia’s premier online bookseller, Angus & Robertson! “Gee-whiz, I … Continue reading

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15. Maggie Welcomes Thousands of Visitors Worldwide

Maggie Steele, the storybook heroine who vaults over the moon, has been attracting thousands of visitors from around the world. So many visitors, in fact, that she’s using a time zone map to keep track of them all.* People are … Continue reading

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16. Public Speaking and Communication

At some point in our life we will face the fear of public speaking when we need to deliver a speech during a special occasion, address an audience, make a professional presentation or simply tell a story to a group of strangers; it is inevitable.  Public speaking can be and really should be a satisfying experience.  However, the majority of people feel fear, anxiety or experience stage fright. So, how can it be avoided? To answer this question I went to a ‘Dare to Speak!’ workshop at the Helensvale library which was organised by members of Toastmasters International. It wasn’t news to me that learning public speaking skills can be beneficial to effective communication and help to become a better leader. However, my pen was filling pages very quickly and I am happy to share what I learnt with you. ‘Dare to Speak!’ was well-organised, presented and lead by the Master of Ceremonies – ... Read the rest of this post

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17. Tjapukai by Margot Justes


Tjapukai is an Aboriginal Cultural Park. A short 15 minute ride from Cairns, puts you right in the old world culture brilliantly revived, and it seems to be alive and doing well.

It is a contained park with planned activities, and I thought it was a terrific introduction to the Aboriginal culture and folk art.  

There was a didgeridoo concert, the haunting mellow sound resonated in the theatre, along with traditional dancing performed by the Tjapukai Dance Troupe. The didgeridoo requires a lot of air power, but the sound that comes out of the instrument resonates around you like an echo. Powerful, still and evocative.

The dance movements were mesmerizing, you quickly got caught up in the story they were telling. Tales of hunting, spiritualism, survival and pride; an insight into the culture through music and dance. The perfect introduction to a civilization  that was totally foreign to me. It was ideal, because it brought the past to life not just through a lecture, but through art, music and dance, and it was interactive

There were boomerang throwing lessons, along with spear throwing, it’s not as easy as it looks. If thrown correctly, the boomerang will return to you, but you must make the attempt to catch it. It will not magically appear in your hand, although the return flight was fascinating to watch.

There were lessons about hunting tools and weapons that were used some 40,000 years ago by the Aboriginal people. It was an amazing insight into an ancient society.

The park is intimate, well organized, and first and foremost educational. A rare glimpse of what once was, an inspiration to keep the old culture alive for future generation. A tiny spark that shows awareness of what once was.

More next week.

Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath
Hearts & Daggers
Hot Crimes Cool Chicks
coming end of September Blood Art

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18. The rebirth of international heritage law

By Lucas Lixinski

In June this year, developments around the Great Barrier Reef were excitedly discussed and closely scrutinized by the World Heritage Committee, a subsidiary organ of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). More specifically, the region around the reef, mineral-rich soil in northeastern Queensland (Australia), has been developed by Australian and foreign mining companies. So the coal, Australia’s second largest export (amassing a whopping AUD 46.8 billion in 2011), can actually head to countries like China, ports as needed. The world’s largest coal-exporting port just so happens to be nearby.

The development of ports requires dredging, and that dredged soil is usually dumped at sea. The soil, rich in heavy metals, releases those metals into the water, and they slowly drift on to reefs, killing coral life.

Why does the World Heritage Committee care? Well the Great Barrier Reef is on the World Heritage List, along with 980 other properties in 160 countries around the world. Does that automatically give the World Heritage Committee, a body whose headquarters is in Paris, and just so happened to be sitting in Cambodia last June, any authority to tell the Australian people and government that they cannot fully exploit their natural resources, in pursuance of their right to Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources?

As it turns out, yes. That is what international heritage does: creates exceptions to States’ sovereign rights so certain goods, deemed worthwhile, can be safeguarded for generations to come. UNESCO, established in 1946, has since its establishment pursued the objective of protecting and safeguarding heritage. To this effect, it has passed on a number of international instruments, including recommendations, declarations, and a number of treaties. Of these, five are particularly relevant:

These conventions, spanning 50 years, present on their own an important record of the evolution of this field of international law, and of international law more generally.

When it comes to the field specifically, the titles of these instruments alone already signal to one of the most important changes, the shift from cultural property to cultural heritage. This shift means distancing from notions of property and ownership, and a move towards stewardship of these goods. They mirror, to a certain extent, the consolidation of human rights internationally, which, at least if Samuel Moyn is to be believed, only really took off in the 1970s.

More importantly, and closely related, this shift also prefaces a shift that took place in the field in 2003, when the Intangible Cultural Heritage Convention was approved. This instrument had been in the minds of some for a long time: the first mention to the need for such a convention dates back at least to the 1970s. And it responds to an important gap: protecting cultural manifestations which do not necessarily have a permanent physical presence. The fact that they do not have a permanent physical presence does not mean they are any less important than, say, the Great Barrier Reef. They are in fact perhaps even more important, as they are closely connected to identity. Because intangible heritage does not exist externally, it must exist internally, close to the heart of identity.

Great barrier reef

Also known as living cultures, intangible cultural heritage means “the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills – as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated therewith – that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage. This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity. For the purposes of this Convention, consideration will be given solely to such intangible cultural heritage as is compatible with existing international human rights instruments, as well as with the requirements of mutual respect among communities, groups and individuals, and of sustainable development.”

More specifically, it safeguards heritage as a process, as opposed to its icons. Physical manifestations of heritage are important, to be sure, but what matters most is how people connect to heritage, and the ways in which this connection influences people’s relationship to the environment, to human rights, and others. This notion reinforces the shift in UNESCO away from heritage as a symbol of sovereignty to heritage as a symbol of shared humanity. In international law more generally, it is another instance of the erosion of sovereignty in favor of a cosmopolitan ideal where peoples, and not necessarily States, coexist in full harmony.

This brings us back to the Great Barrier Reef. Protected under the World Heritage Convention, it is still formally protected as a site, and not as a process to which people feel connected. However, people’s connections to their heritage, and the process through which this connection is entrenched, is becoming more and more part of the equation even in protecting heritage. The notion of heritage as a process, enshrined in the 2003 Intangible Heritage Convention, is spreading to other heritage regimes, and triggering the rebirth of the field, from monuments and sites to living cultures. In the Great Barrier’s case, it is now less about the Reef itself than it is about what it means for our shared humanity. The good at stake is not only coral reefs, it is now the Reef standing for a humanity hopeful in a sustainable future, hopeful in reverting the negative effects of development, and saving the reef from ourselves, for the sake of present and future generations.

Lucas Lixinksi is a Lecturer at the University of New South Wales and is author of Intangible Cultural Heritage in International Law, part of the newly launched Cultural Heritage Law and Policy series.

Oxford University Press is a leading publisher in Public International Law, including the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law, latest titles from thought leaders in the field, and a wide range of law journals and online products. We publish original works across key areas of study, from humanitarian to international economic to environmental law, developing outstanding resources to support students, scholars, and practitioners worldwide.

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Image credit: Great Barrier Reef. Photo by NickJ. Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons.

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19. BarCamp Gold Coast 10 organised by Gold Coast TechSpace

(If you want to know the general History of BarCamp – click the white button below) A free community event, the BarCamp Gold Coast 10 was organised by the founder and current President of Gold Coast TechSpace – Steve Dalton, by the current committee member and Secretary of Gold Coast TechSpace – David Tangye and Open Source Software Engineer – Anna Gerber. It was a fantastic event with intense social interactions, interesting discussions, well-organised workshops, clear visual demonstrations and plenty of practical advice – just like this one that I was able to capture on the spot: On a serious note, I can honestly say that I was listening and learning as much as I could.  I mean, seriously, where else would you find such a fantastic opportunity to meet with people like Singularity University Ambassador (NASA Ames Research Center), Adjunct Professor at Bond University and Adjunct Professor at Griffith University – Dr ... Read the rest of this post

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20. Looking back on a successful event “Linking You Locally”

“Linking You Locally”    “Linking You Locally” was masterfully organised by the Gold Coast Helensvale Branch Library and Gold Coast Medicare Local with the benevolent support of many local businesses.   Gold Coast Medicare Local is a not-for-profit independent and locally run company and their generous sponsorship to the local event was greatly appreciated.     Despite the gathering grey clouds in the early morning the event started on time, at 9am and cheerfully welcomed the local community with colourful displays on both floors of the Helensvale Library; inside and outside. The event was officially opened by Councillor William Owen – Jones and was followed by the Latin inspired fitness dance Zumba. It was loud and full of colour. Many participated in the exhilarating ‘fitness-party’.    It was inviting, motivating and inspirational and many wonderful activities followed for the next few hours. Activities included a theatre performance, Pilates class, circus workshop and Basketball.  It was free and available ... Read the rest of this post

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21. Cairns by Margot Justes

Cairns is a small town, walking distance to everything. It’s quaint, accessible, beautiful, and the people are friendly. The only taxi we took was to and from the airport.

Restaurants were plentiful, we even paid homage to Crocodile Dundee, and ate at the place named after the movie. I loved the movie, and the restaurant was right on the boardwalk, facing the water, and a short hop from the hotel. Beautiful setting. The food was okay, nothing fantastic, but I didn’t expect more. In this case, location and name were the selling points. I heard the steaks were good, but I’m not a great meat eater, and honestly prefer a good meatball to steak.

The hotel room included breakfast, and it was quite a buffet spread, down to my daily dose of passion fruit. I mixed it with yogurt and prunes. I love prunes, must be the European background. As odd as it sounds, the mix was delicious.  I continued with the concoction in Sydney as well.

In the center of town, there is a huge swimming pool that faces sand and water, and it is open year round. A sidewalk separates the pool from the sand, and the walk along the coast was mesmerizing, the beach on one side and Cairns on the other. Beautifully laid out for optimum pleasure for all.

There are plenty of cafes, restaurants, art galleries, souvenir shops, parks, and flora and fauna. In other words, it was perfection. From the day I arrived, I knew I was going to hate to leave. It was love at first sight.

The Cairns Regional Gallery introduced me to the works of Lloyd Rees. His drawings and paintings reflected lush landscapes, light, where man and nature interacted. His  drawings of churches were amazing, almost architectural renditions but drawn with soul.  I saw a drawing he did of St. Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney, and had to see the real thing. I actually visited the cathedral because of the drawing. He captured my imagination. I would see his work again in the Art Gallery New South Wales in Sydney.

The sunset harbor cruise is highly recommended, along with the harbor, there are glimpses of mangroves in the distance, a sublime sunset, and a beautiful skyline of the city.

There was so much more to see and do, but this was a good start. Would I go back? Absolutely.  

More next week.

Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath
Hearts & Daggers
Hot Crimes Cool Chicks
coming end of September Blood Art

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22. Google’s New and Innovative Technologies

IT Forum Gold Coast (ITFGC) is the best place to network with industry peers, potential clients and employers.  The Federal, State and local Governments give well-deserved recognition to ITFGC for being an active voice of the IT industry on the Gold Coast and Brisbane. Being a member gives you an unprecedented opportunity to stay informed […]

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It's Tuesday. . . 
So watch out for


 ................................. ............................................................
Today I did a SKYPE School Visit from Oregon to the Garden State of New Jersey.

This first grade class offers three languages: 
English, Chinese and Spanish.

And these first grade kids were so SMART!

Right away I had an Aussie connection with two of them.  I shared my Australian aboriginal bark paintings, message stick and boomerang.  One boy had a didgeridoo his mom had brought back from a trip Down Under - and HE PLAYED IT FOR ME!   Fantastic.

Another child's Dad had been to Sydney, knew all about Urulu, and wanted to know what it was like there.  Fortunately I had visited the sacred monolith, so we had a great chat about it. Their teacher is also doing an Australian set of lessons.

We talked about the books they loved, the books I write, and how to write stories that HOOK readers.  I showed them all my picture books, especially "Kangaroo Clues,"  because it is about Aussie critters, and I read from "Ruthie and the Hippo's Fat Behind."  


I am always so psyched after Skyping with a class like this one.  They were eager to ask questions, very intelligent ones, too. A way smart bunch of kids.  

My Magic Carpet of Books got a super work out this morning - over an hour.  Yet it went so fast because we were all having a good time.  I learned from them, and I hope they learned from me. 

You know. . .

 Today I glimpsed the future generation. . . 
and they looked  pretty awesome to me!



Books for Kids - Manuscript Critiques


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24. Librarian voices from the other side of the world

By Annabel Coles

Reading for our first Australia/New Zealand LAC

Reading for our first Australia/New Zealand LAC

After months of planning, preparation and final presentation run-throughs, I stood at the front of Seminar Room 3 within the State Library of Victoria, looking across the tables carefully decorated with our OUP goody bags and name placards. It was 8:30 in the morning and I was ready to meet my first librarians from “Down Under”. Back in the office in the United Kingdom, a colleague and I had planned the two meetings (one in the morning for academic librarians, one in the afternoon with state, public, and school librarians) with military precision. The refreshments, the sessions, the materials, the presentations, the timings, even our entertainment at lunch (a local author was coming in to give a lively talk on his book) was planned to a tee. But what you can never plan when dealing with people, and perhaps especially passionate librarians, is how they will respond to those plans…

I was nervous. My colleagues were more relaxed, being based in Australia, they were more familiar with the subtle culture differences; they knew the drill. I, on the other hand, needed to fit in, be approachable, and most importantly I needed to ensure I listened and absorbed everything they had to say so I could fully represent them and their needs back in Oxford, on the other side of the world.

Shortly after 8:30 a.m. the librarians started arriving, one by one, picking up their coffees and muffins, huddling in small groups, and started chatting. I needn’t have worried.

The important thing about these events (which we are labelling our “Library Advisory Councils”) is giving the librarians an opportunity to talk with their peers on issues that matter to most to them, and we, as publishers, have the privileged to be part of those conversations. I learnt early in the sessions that they rarely get the chance to discuss issues that they want to discuss. In their usual meetings they are presented with a specific theme and asked to represent only on that area.

Ahead of the meetings it was really important that we asked what they wanted to discuss, and then we would make that a big part of the day. Of course we also have things we want to update them on — as our “Advisors” it’s important that we are able to give them information on our strategies and plans for the future — but this was never intended to be a sales pitch. We want to give them the stage and sit alongside them in the discussions, rather than it being an “us and them” debate.

For me, this was my first time on antipodean soil, surrounded by librarians who were having good and bad experiences with publishers, and this is my opportunity to do something about it. I felt lucky to sit amongst them and openly eavesdrop (whilst furiously taking notes).

Underway with the LAC

Underway with the LAC

It would be naïve to think that a meeting like this could solve all the problems discussed. Some of the topics discussed were huge hitters that have been discussed and debated in various forms at library conferences around the world over the last few years. It was acknowledged that these issues are larger and more complex than we could possibly hope to remedy within a day. But, as the group were together, the very act of them venting and sharing their experiences enabled them to strengthen their own network and not feel so isolated. It also gave me first-hand experience of their thoughts and feelings on the topic, so that I can now better represent their views when I’m back in Oxford.

Once we got past those larger issues, it was now time to buckle down to get some actionable takeaways: what could we actually impact on a short term basis?

The majority of the actions that I brought away from the sessions were based around workflows: how can publishers work with librarians to make their jobs easier; cut out complexities within processes; and just generally make things simpler. The renewals process is complex and long-winded: what can we do to streamline and simplify the process? We supply our meta-data to discovery service tools but it’s getting stuck with that intermediary for months before finally getting added to their system: so how can we influence our partnerships to move things through more quickly?

Much discussion was had around business models (and we have a Future Business Models group at OUP), including Patron Driven Acquisition and Evidence Based Acquisition. Librarians had both positive and negative experiences and expectations around the impact of those on budgeting and workflows. Again, this was all gold dust to take back to Head Office and sprinkle liberally into the agenda!

So, after brainstorms, lively debate and summarising in groups, I came away with an armful of flipchart paper, covered in ideas, straight from the people who really matter. As the librarians left at the end of the sessions, they were exchanging contact details, thanking us for the day and the opportunity to be involved, and promising to pop by to say hello to us the following week at VALA (a library conference being held in the city).

The Victoria State Library, Melbourne

The Victoria State Library, Melbourne

In addition to the fantastic feedback, I have also made some real connections with those librarians on the other side of the world to me — librarians with diverse workflows, audiences, and requirements of publishers. But now, with their voices and opinions still ringing in my ears, my intention is to carry their specific ideas and challenges, the 17000 kilometres across ocean and continents back to the working groups and strategy-makers in Oxford. There, librarian voices from all around the world, whose ideas are communicated through other Library Advisory Councils, will be heard.

Annabel Coles is the Senior Marketing Manager in the Institutional Marketing team at Oxford University Press, promoting our online products and journals to institutions across Europe and Australia and New Zealand. She has held various sales and marketing roles within OUP for nine years.

Regional “Library Advisory Councils” are held within various territories across the world to facilitate conversations with our customers (librarians) on issues that are of mutual interest to ensure that we are feeding back appropriate information and intelligence directly from our markets to our product and platform development, business model and publishing strategies across the business. This provides an opportunity to listen to our customers on their turf, alongside their peers and in their local language and specifically to speak on issues relevant to them in their part of the world. We hope that this will ensure we are bringing the customer voice back into the heart of the products and services we develop within the Global Academic Business. For more, see the OUP Librarian Resource Center.

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Image credits: (1) Photograph of Steacie Science and Engineering Library at York University by Raysonho@Open Grid Scheduler. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons. (2-4) ANZ LAC images courtesy of Annabel Coles. Do not reproduce without permission.

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<!--[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 <![endif]-->  My “Dreamtime Man” is taking shape
  A rhyming picture book for grades 4 and up

Illustrator, Ioana Zdralea, did an awesome job of interrupting this wild and mysterious Dreamtime land.  I am thrilled!!  This is the illo she sent me  for the first two verses. The verses describe the harshness of where the Australian aboriginals had to scratch out a living, 

  Do go see Ioana’s other art work:


<!--[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE <![endif]-->

Imagine a wild place where sun burns the sand,
Where water and food must be scratched from the land.
This place is the wellspring of men black as coal,
And Dreamtime ruled all who endured as one soul.    

While shy Daintree tribes hunted deep in the shade,
Tough bush and outback men learned how to trade.                     
Whether hunting, or fighting, or struggling to live,
All respected the Dreamtime and what it could give.     


More sketches and finished artwork will
come to this page soon.




Books for Kids - Skype Author Visits
Manuscript Critiques





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