Walking into the Arts Centre Gallery gave me a sense of pride of my own inner strength from picturing Australian women doing what they loved to do; songwriting, singing, playing instruments and performing for an audience.
From the timeline plastered on the walls it showed the rise of folk, jazz, music television, woman creating punk bands all the way through to the present day.
Huge tour posters surrounded by framed pictures, guitars and iconic clothing surround me, remembering some of the names & pictures that were shown from the ‘90s and learning about ABC’s “Youth Radio” Triple J starting in 1989.
The black and white Chrissy Amphlett, The Seekers and Beaches showed the raw edge, the guts and determination all the women had even from the begin in the 1920s when Jazz was big for all-girl bands.
The present day brought Killing Heidi, Little Birdy, Magic Dirt, Claire Bowditch, Megan Washington and Missy Higgins all with their own unique sound.
The rebellious feel came through in used drum sticks, journals with song lyrics, sticker covered cases and clothing that stood out. It is not just a celebration of the women that covered the walls but also a celebration of all women, showing that with determination and a dream you can achieve it.
To coincide with the exhibition there is a free live concert on the 12th November at The Arts Centre Forecourt from 6pm – 7pm with Adalita (Magic Dirt), Rebecca Barnard, Diana Anaid, Carol Lloyd and many more MC’d by Claire Hooper.
Also included is a number of floor talks at Gallery 1 of The Arts Centre and a lecture from Chief Curator of Rock Chicks, Janine Barrand. And don't forget to pick up the exhibition catalogue for $20.
Rock Chicks: An Exhibition is on until 27th February 2011 at The Arts Centre in Melbourne. For more information about the exhibition head over here.
^ Chrissy Amphlett on stage during the Australian Made tour, Perth, 1987.
Photograph by Bob King.
The Juke Archive, Performing Arts Collection, The Arts Centre.