Arts, Philosophy & History

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MELISSA ASHLEY – The Birdman’s Wife

James Gould was famous as for his beautiful printed and hand coloured depictions of Australian birds. But it was his wife Elizabeth who produced the bulk of this wonderful work. In this first chapter she encounters Gould in his workroom and is fascinated by all she sees.

Recorded at the Sydney Writers Festival 2017



George Gittoes has used his talents in many art forms to draw attention to the plight of those in war zones- both civilian and army. Here he recounts ( with a few asides!) a series of incidents that typify his experiences in these areas.

Recorded at the Sydney Writers Festival 2017


A.C GRAYLING- The Age of Genius

Noted historian, philosopher and academic, Professor A. C Grayling claims that the 17th c was the greatest ever change in the mental outlook of humanity. Here he offers a small illustration of how the rise of occultism led to scientific methods that had far reaching effects.


MARK HOLDEN - My Idol Years

  Mark Holden was a golden boy popstar in the eighties- platinum record success, courted by Elton John's management, he had the world at his feet. While his book concentrates on his rise and fall as an Australian Idol judge, this read is about a treasured memory, singing with his idols The Temptations.

Recorded at Byron writers Festival 2017



david lovejoy David's book is a wonderful combination of fiction and philosophy. In this extract , his character  Arwel, is lost in the desert .


HUGH MACKAY -Beyond Belief

Hugh Mackay -Beyond Belief002 Hugh Mackay believes even if we don't define ourselves as religious we are all on this spiritual quest called 'life' – and we must find ways to relate to each other ethically and compassionately.

Recorded at Sydney Writers Festival 2016



As a rock'n'roll frontman Tex Perkins has had enormous success on the Australian and overseas music scene- but he is happiest he says just turning up to play with his band of the moment. This read details his early beginnings with his band The Dum Dums - apparently not everyone appreciated their sense of humour! STRONG LANGUAGE WARNING ! (You are entering the music scene!)

Recorded at Byron writers Festival 2017


SEBASTIAN SMEE - The Art of Rivalry

It should be no surprise to learn that artists influence each other, but it is fascinating to learn to what extent and how this has shaped the last 200 years of what we view in our galleries.

Recorded at the Sydney Writers Festival 2017


ASHLEIGH WILSON - Brett Whiteley: Art, Life and the other Thing.

In this moving extract Ashleigh writes an account of Brett Whitely using his art to help him cope with the unthinkable – the loss of his friend the artist Joel Elenberg.
Recorded at the Sydney writers Festival 2017



authors in their own words