As per the previous post here, on Thursday this week I was enjoying an early morning drive along the Carpentaria Highway in the NT’s Gulf Country after a few days at Borroloola and came across this freshly-killed Feral Cat Felis cattus. As regular guests here would know I have a penchant for road-kill (follow the tab on the right to see more). I should have a bumper sticker that says “I Stop For Roadkill.“
Last week I had an early morning drive along the remote Carpentaria Highway in the NT’s Gulf country. Apart from all-to-frequent roadkill here isn’t much to see along the 400 or so kilometres of this road that runs from the Stuart Highway at Daly Waters to the coast just east of the small town of Borroloola. The road has too many long straight stretches, a lot of blind corners and cattle and wildlife that wander out of the unfenced paddocks and onto the roadway.
This is a guest post from Chips Mackinolty, who is taking a break in Palermo, Italy
I didn’t intend writing for a few weeks but coming to Palermo was both fabulous from a personal point of view—but also one of great sadness.
I flew into Palermo’s Falcone-Borsellino Airport yesterday from Rome, to a day of national mourning: EU, Italian and Sicilian flags at half mast for the refugees drowned off the coast of Lampedusa, a few tens of metres from a little known rocky outcrop, isola di coniglio, or Rabbit Island.READ MORE
I’ve liked Richard Serra’s steel sculptures ever since I first saw his massive “The Matter of Time” in the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao a few years ago. I cannot describe that work adequately here so you’ll have to read this 2005 piece in The Guardian and have a look at the Museum’s Collection page here.
September in Darwin. The town lurks under pregnant clouds that will never shed a drop of rain. A cruel sun bakes the air and melts tar and brains alike. Temperature and humidity are lock-stepped in an upward spiral. Soon it will 32 degrees at 8am with 80% humidity and climbing.
Welcome to the build-up in the Top End.
This is why we drink … or at least that is the excuse that I and many others rely on. Some people think about these matters more and better than I can or do. Two of them – Therese Ritchie and Todd Williams – are local artists who can think, talk and make images that resonate, tease and discomfort all at the same time.
Here are their thoughts – and some of their wonderful images – from their new show ‘Groggy‘ at the Northern Centre of Contemporary Art in Parap that will run through to 12 October.
Enough from me. Here is Therese Ritchie’s address to the crowd from last eveningREAD MORE
Roll back to first light on 8 September 2013. Tony Abbott, Australia’s Prime Minister elect, emerges barefoot into the early morning light. He is in his cycling gear and squats to put on his cleated cycling shoes then walks to his waiting road-bike in that curious clickety-clack heel-bound duck walk that cyclists have when off their bike.
No-one looks cool walking in those shoes but not being cool has never bothered Abbott.
Like half the country I was nursing a slight hangover and was watching the early news from the east coast. Abbott was in neck-to-knee lyrca emblazoned with sponsors for his annual charity fund-raiser Pollie Pedal, which his office runs in conjunction with Carers Australia.
Pollie Pedal’s sponsors include Gerry Ryan’s Jayco caravans, a law firm, a book chain and three pharmaceutical companies – alphapharm, Roche and Pfizer. Running across Abbott’s chest in bright blue and down the outside of each thigh is the logo “AMGEN”.
So who or what is AMGEN?READ MORE
The six months of relative calm that Adam ‘Little Boy’ Giles has bought to the Country Liberal Party’s Northern Territory Government ended in chaos late yesterday afternoon.
At 4.55pm – when most public servants are sitting in what passes for a traffic jam in Darwin and most journalists are either in the pub or headed to one – NT Chief Minister Adam Giles issued this press release that signalled the end of Alison Anderson’s ministerial career in the NT and beyond.READ MORE
Last evening Warren Mundine was interviewed by Ellen Fanning on the SBS TV program The Observer Effect.
For mine Fanning went pretty easy on Mundine. The interview did a good job of introducing him to a wider audience and to confirming him in his likely future role as the most powerful Aboriginal person in Australia under the sponsorship of new Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
Mundine, without any apparent consultation with any person – black or white – outside of the Liberal Party, has been named as the Chair of Abbott’s new Indigenous Advisory Council that will apparently have a vague but broad-reaching policy-setting role under Abbott’s new Liberal/National Party coalition government.
Frankly I don’t think that Mundine, particularly when he gets into the room with such conservative heavy-hitters and apparent fellow members of the Council as Marcia Langton and Noel Pearson, will carry all that much weight or influence, but the blue-and-not-so-blue-rinse-luvvy Liberal set from Sydney seem to like him.READ MORE
This is a guest post by Chips Mackinolty that was first published, in edited form, in the NT News on 7 September 2013.
After more than 30 years in the Territory, Chips Mackinolty is taking a year off: for “a pre-pension gap year” as he describes it. After all, he says, “gap years are wasted on the young”.
Across most of that time he has worked for organisations which haven’t allowed him to have a public personal opinion. This has included working for Aboriginal organisations, writing as an interstate journalist for both Fairfax and Murdoch, designing for private enterprise clients, and even a stint as a Labor Party ministerial appointee. For the last four years he has worked for the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory [AMSANT].
Apart from an irreverent political approach in his artwork, which has occasionally been touted by the NT News, Mackinolty has pretty much stayed out of the world of public opinion.
A day after quitting AMSANT, he writes an opinion piece for the NT News on an ongoing commitment: Aboriginal health. It is published on the day of the Federal election, but with no intent to influence votes. In his words, “that’s deliberate: whoever wins the election today must commit to the most successful bipartisan strategy in recent Territory history, closing the gap in Aboriginal health outcomes”. He tells a story that suggests that the Territory is hitting well above its weight.
But it’s not as simple as that, as he tells us.READ MORE
This time last week I was basking in the warm Norfolk sun enjoying the last day of the 9th meeting of the European Ornithologists Union at the East Anglia University at Norwich.
My photo of the presenters at the “European ethno-ornithology and conservation” symposium (co-chaired by Andy Gosler and Maris Strazds) does no credit to them – they really are a much nicer group that this fuzzy photo shows!.READ MORE