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Tag: politics

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Quilty

Wednesday, March 13th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

It’s often said that having a lot of enemies must mean you’re doing something right. Ben Quilty discovered long ago that the price of fame for an artist is the undying enmity of a large proportion of one’s peers. This hasn’t put the brakes on his glorious ascent but neither has it left him unscarred. […]

Film Reviews

Green Book

Thursday, January 31st, 2019 Film Reviews,

This year’s Academy Awards is generating several fascinating dilemmas. First up, could the Academy give the prize for Best Picture to a film as frivolous and patched-together as Bohemian Rhapsody? Let’s not even get started on the sexual harrassment allegations levelled at director, Bryan Singer. Secondly, what has everybody got against A Star is Born? […]

Film Reviews

Cold War

Friday, December 28th, 2018 Film Reviews,

In Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959) Alain Resnais set Marguerite Duras the task of writing a love story that would not seem insignificant alongside the brute fact of the atomic bomb. In Cold War, Pawel Pawlikowski gives us a love story that traverses the oppressive political landscape of the years following World War Two, when capitalism […]

Film Reviews

Vice

Thursday, December 20th, 2018 Film Reviews,

Dick Cheney will forever be known as the man who put the “vice” into “Vice President”. While the Trump administration continues to sink into a legal quagmire we can look back at Cheney and marvel at how he ever got away with it. His continuing prosperity, indeed his very existence, suggests that his contract with […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Lynette Wallworth: Awavena

Thursday, December 6th, 2018 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Not many artists have been personally invited by the chief of a South American tribe to come and make a virtual reality film in the Amazonian jungle. None, in fact, until Lynette Wallworth received such a summons. It came about when Tashka, chief of the Yawanawa tribe saw Wallworth’s previous VR piece, Collisions (2016), at […]

Art Essays

Newsletter 263

Saturday, December 1st, 2018 Art Essays, Newsletter,

There’s an essay to be written on that new political buzzword: “base”. One is forever hearing how Donald Trump can depend on his “base” for blind, fanatical support, no matter what he does – even when his policies are directly contrary to the supporters’ own best interests. One wonders what motivates working-class people to cheer […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

David Goldblatt: Photographs 1948-2018

Friday, November 23rd, 2018 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

“I was never interested in making propaganda for anybody,” said David Goldblatt, “and didn’t allow my photos to be used that way.” It’s an important point because even Goldblatt’s admirers tend to see him as a political photographer who drew global attention to the injustices of Apartheid. As this landmark retrospective at the Museum of […]

Film Reviews

Widows

Friday, November 23rd, 2018 Film Reviews,

When Steve McQueen won the 2013 Academy Award for Best Picture for 12 Years a Slave, it was a testament to his choice of subject matter rather than his skills as a director. With a background in video art – a medium in which boring and pointless exercises often enjoy critical acclaim – McQueen has […]

Film Reviews

Fahrenheit 11/9

Thursday, October 25th, 2018 Film Reviews,

Godwin’s Law states that the longer an on-line discussion continues the more likely it is that someone will mention Hitler. In Fahrenheit 11/9 it takes Michael Moore an hour-and-a-half to invoke Der Führer, but when he does there’s no holding back. We get newsreel footage of Hitler addressing a rally, but the voiceover comes from […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Steirischer Herbst 2018

Thursday, October 4th, 2018 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

In the words of Thomas Bernhard, Austria’s greatest novelist of the late 20th century, the city of Graz was “a nest of Nazis”. In a speech of last year, Georg Friedrich Haas, Austria’s foremost living composer, reeled off a list of Nazis that had remained faithful to the Führer in post-war Graz, including his own […]