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Thoroughly Modern and Adorable Outcasts: Women in Early Australian Film

29 April – 1 July 2012

A season of early Australian cinema showcasing the roles that women played in front of the camera and in film production. The program strands ‘Thoroughly Modern’ and ‘Adorable Outcasts’ respectively explore the creation of a modern national identity and cinematic fantasies of the exotic through images of women. Silent films will be accompanied on the Gallery’s Wurlitzer Style 260 theatre organ.

Talk Sun 6 May 2.30pm / Cinema A

Professor Jill Julius Matthews, Head of the School of Cultural Inquiry at the Australian National University, Canberra, will discuss the multiple relationships between Australian women and moving pictures in the first decades of the twentieth century. Author of Dance Hall & Picture Palace: Sydney's Romance with Modernity (2005), Mathews is also currently working with other scholars on the project 'Mapping the Movies: The changing nature of Australia's cinema circuits and their audiences 1956-1984'. Drawing on popular culture and early film, she will trace women’s pleasure in the role of viewer, as well as their work in front of and behind the camera, and in the front and back rooms of the theatre and will explore how movies made us modern.

Film notes and film prints courtesy of the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia

National Film and Sound Archive