The Influence November 27, 2021

Shen Xin

Artist Shen Xin says the layering of desire, bondage and labour in Hito Steyerl’s video Lovely Andrea has deeply informed their understanding of image.

Theatre November 27, 2021

Julius Caesar

Kip Williams’ bold and devastating production of Julius Caesar brings the 21st-century media machine into a study of political rhetoric.

Film November 27, 2021


Julia Ducournau’s Palme D’Or-winning film Titane gives horror a high-octane twist.

Fiction November 27, 2021

Boys who dance

James stares at Max and Max stares at James. Each wears a white singlet tucked into sun-starched football shorts. The drawstrings of the shorts are pulled tight and the singlets cling to the protruding rib cages of their slender frames. “Now remember,” …

Visual Art November 27, 2021

Author and artist Shubigi Rao

Shubigi Rao’s unclassifiable writing and visual art wryly unpack the disappearances of Empire.

Visual Art November 27, 2021

Found and Gathered

In the NGV Australia exhibition Found and Gathered, Rosalie Gascoigne and Lorraine Connelly-Northey reveal the richness of debris.

Books November 20, 2021

Wole Soyinka
Chronicles from the Land of the Happiest People on Earth

How does one objectively review a master’s first novel in nearly half a century? In my case, it proved to be an impossible task. There’s been much hype surrounding Wole Soyinka’s Chronicles from the Land of the Happiest People on Earth, …

Books November 20, 2021

Christos Tsiolkas
7 ½

“If you’re uncertain if a book is autofiction,” ran a recent, waggish listicle on, “turn to the names for clues.” “If the protagonist is unnamed, it’s autofiction. If the protagonist is named, it’s fiction. But if the protagonist …

Fiction November 20, 2021

Desert Motel

On the night desk of the Desert Motel I spend far too much time looking up from Moby-Dick to check if the moth on the ceiling has moved. The interruptions? Trucks, at this hour. Their headlights blaze the front windows, then turn out …

Film November 20, 2021

The chilling effect of film censorship in Hong Kong

New film censorship guidelines in Hong Kong, released this month, will have a chilling effect on a once-vibrant industry.

The Influence November 20, 2021

Amrita Hepi

Multidisciplinary artist Amrita Hepi pays homage to Adrian Piper’s groundbreaking short video Funk Lessons.

Books November 20, 2021

Dyani Lewis (ed)
The Best Australian Science Writing 2021

There was a time when science journalism was much more mainstream than it is today. It has been marginalised by the ideological battles of climate change and the slow death of specialised writing as the print media have been affected – ironically enough …


Books November 27, 2021

Fleur Watson
The New Curator: Exhibiting Architecture and Design

Fleur Watson opens The New Curator with the wry observation that curation has well and truly left the gallery. These days folk curate “menus, wardrobes, playlists, social media feeds” and notably also the news they receive and the information …

Books November 27, 2021

Emily Ratajkowski
My Body

As a young model, Emily Ratajkowski knew her most bankable feature was also a limitation. Her large breasts and small frame were “valuable and rare”, but she would never be high fashion. She was a nameless “ ‘commercial swim’ girl” until, …

Books November 27, 2021

Xavier Fowler
Not Playing the Game

“If you go back to World War I … all elite sportsmen used to volunteer because they thought it was their duty.” So said Corporal Ben Roberts-Smith in 2011, when the NRL employed him to promote its Anzac Cup. In Not Playing the Game: Sport and …