New Hope

Millennials and Centennials have been on my mind since starting my new job in late January and I will reveal my cunning plan to a number of very senior people at La Trobe University in the coming weeks and months. Technology has been a game changer for Gen Y and Z and their way to connect not only with each other, but the world at large.

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Speaking of youth, I did want to mention the New Hope exhibition which opened last Wednesday night at Hatch in Ivanhoe – a mash up show if you like of audio and visual artists all coming together in the name of hip hop. You’ll see work from beat makers, rappers and performers developed at arts youth facility Jets Studio backdropped by street artists’ original works. Music and artwork will be available for sale with a percentage of profits donated to Berry Street Youth Housing. I was lucky enough to work with Tom Civil a number of years ago promoting his mural on the external wall of Crisalida Family Therapy Centre in Thornbury and missed the recent pop up show Empire by Rone – Burnham Beeches out in the Dandenongs but find street art fascinating.

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It’s been chilly and I’ve been eating my way through winter to keep my mind off the gloom (as well as running when I can). Mr Rosanna took me out for a belated birthday dinner (above) to Melbourne institution Ezard at the Adelphi Hotel in Flinders Lane last weekend which was a special night. I found it very ‘Melbourne’ in that it’s understated and sophisticated (white tablecloths) at the same time. The focus is very much on the outstanding food and service, your company and conversation rather than a more showy type of dining experience and environment. There is an eight course sharing menu but Mr R and I opted for the three course a la carte option. Highly recommended.

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I’ve complemented that this week with a more casual dinner with friends at vegetarian pub Green Man’s Arms in Carlton (note to self: remember to book a table next time!) where we sat at a bar table perched on stools. It’s got a great atmosphere and I loved the interior with my observant friends noting the cotton plants instead of flowers (apparently a current trend) in the vases.

I’m also on an internal ‘cultural’ committee at work and we organised a Christmas in July lunch at Cafe Heide in Bulleen this week for our entire department, which was a lot of fun. The team that plays together stays together! It was the first Christmas in July that I’ve ever attended and we will make this an ongoing event. We chose mains from the existing menu but I noted the chilli hot chocolate and mulled wine available and the cafe were good enough to create a special Christmas pudding dessert for us. It was busy at Heide and I parked at Banksia Park but it was lovely to walk up through the gardens including past the big holly bush, which got me into the spirit! If you are feeling it like me, there is also a German Christmas Market at Macleod College from 5 – 8pm on Friday 26 July.

Finally, if you are a craft fan or want to get ahead with early Christmas shopping, the Finders Keepers Market is on this weekend at the Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton and a good indoors activity given how cold it’s going to be.

 

Back to the future

It’s been a big week and it’s not over yet.  My last Bold Thinking Series lecture for 2017 on the future of Universities at the State Library Theatrette with MC Virginia Trioli and the three Vice-Chancellors from La Trobe, Melbourne and Monash Universities went well on Wednesday night despite a couple of technical hitches at the start.  I ended up having to give up the hand-held microphone I use to roam amongst the audience for questions to outgoing Melbourne University VC Glyn Davis after his headset mic stopped working, leaving just me to cover the floor during the lecture, instead of our usual two people.  The discussion item that did not get asked on the night was the interesting fact that Glyn Davis and Margaret Gardner are actually married to each other yet work at competing universities – a colleague was playfully calling them the ‘Posh & Becks’ of the University sector!

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L-R: Virginia Trioli, Glyn Davis, John Dewar, Margaret Gardner

It was also an experience to work with Virginia Trioli – an impressive, seasoned media professional who also had her own ideas to add to the mix, which made the lecture a little bit different in terms of format.  Francis Leach will be returning as our usual MC in 2018 and I’m looking forward to catching up with him next week for a thank you dinner.  I’m now in planning mode for next year and it’s been interesting working with a 20-something focus group on the topics they’re interested in….stay tuned!

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Image via BAAG

La Trobe University is not the only one to be turning 50 this year, Bulleen Art & Garden also celebrates its 50th Birthday Party and Sculpture Garden Launch on 30 November.  Tickets are free but you will need to register to attend.

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Image via The Big Design Market Facebook page

Some design and craft events on this weekend include the pop up Design Files Open House in Collingwood from 10am – 5 pm, which opened yesterday as well as the German Christmas Market at the Deustche Schule in Fitzroy, which opens tonight at 5pm.  The Etsy Made Local Melbourne market is being held in Coburg tomorrow while The Big Design Market (started by a friend of a friend) at the Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton opens next Friday.

Locally, St Martin of Tours Rosanna’s Twilight Community Fete is on tonight, the Eaglemont Village Christmas Market is on tomorrow while Macleod Village has its Christmas Fair on next Saturday.