Scenes from a Saturday in Melbourne

Writing a post to sum up my time in Melbourne would be far too daunting—even for such a formidable blogger as il bavalino. So, I am going to do two things: break up my posts and try and capture the day through embedded Tweets. I’ll provide some brief context, but I will say here that my first Saturday in Melbourne was a real treat. I got to meet up with folks I just broke bread with in Oklahoma at Domains 17, namely Tim Klapdor and Keegan Long-Wheeler, as well as finally meeting long-time friend Rowan Peter IRL—a perennial favorite ever since the beginning of ds106radio

The day started with breakfast on the Yarra river at the Boatbuilder’s Yard. Tim and Keegan joined me, and from there we took a walk on the promenade and ended up at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), which was a total treat. There was a special exhibit focused on the Aardman animation studio, and it was impressive. I loved all the dioramas and sets from the movies, and I was struck by how amazing that place would be to work. It made me very excited about Reclaim Video for some reason 🙂

Beyond the Aardman exhibit, the fixed collection of the ACMI museum (which is free) was amazing, and it was the perfect setting to finally meet the great Rowan Peter. They had a reproduction of the “Last of the V-8s” from Mad Max, which was worth the 20 hour flight alone.

But beyond that, they had so many cool little nooks featuring movies from Australia and beyond. This bit on Muriel’s Wedding, one of my favorite independent films from the 90s, drew me right in.

The project room/installation wherein the light and shadows that make film possible were materialized through an interactive exhibit was probably my favorite single part of the museum.

Rowan Peter and I had some fun performing for the camera in another exhibit which captured and augmented your movements in some creative ways. 

And random bits about color and sound were accessible and truly intriguing. There was a whole bit on all the times the Wilhelm Scream was used in popular films. The ACMI museum blew the AMMI museum in NYC out of the water. It was thoughtful, tightly constructed, and really engaging.

After the museum, Rowan took us to the Library where we met Tess, the guide of our walking tour around Melbourne. It was a 3 and a half hour epic tour of the city, and it was a great introduction to the city. One of the things I noted throughout the day about the city was how impressive and varied the Melbourne sky was over the course of a day.

On our walking tour we saw the 8 hour day monument, commemorating labor rights and the birth of the 8 hour day, which was proudly brought to the world by Melbourne.

We also got a look at a ton of street art from around the city.

I really enjoyed the Gallerias we saw on the tour which featured mosaic floors installed by Italian craftsmen during the Melbourne gold boom in the late 19th century. They held up beautifully.

When the tour ended (I think we walked close to 8 miles) we met Joyce Seitzinger and Mark Smithers for dinner and the fun continued.

It was an amazing day, between the world class movie museum, a solid hike around a gorgeous city, and a regular influx of great company I could not have asked for more from my first day in Melbourne. But Melbourne was not done yet, so I definitely have more to post, but that first day was the best day!

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