While dumpster diving may get it’s fare share of filthy reviews, the audience at the screening of DIVE! on Thursday 26th July at Bella Union witnessed an eye opening documentary made on a low budget exposing the truths around the tremendous amount of genuinely edible food that is thrown out on a daily basis. The heroic efforts of filmmaker Jeremy Seifert along with his family and friends bought home a personal story of our lost connection to food and how society has come to mindlessly throw out half of what it produces. In the film dumpster divers weighed up the issue of civil disobedience against the injustice of throwing away food that could be given to the hungry if only people cared enough to intervene. The math itself was jaw dropping, the attempts at bringing traders to account admirable and the endless ways that we can make a difference gave us much food for thought.
Once again resident MC Tina Jensen (AKA Master Charmer) warmed up the audience with her very special brand of introductions, not only of the guests and film, but on this occasion, of audience members to each another. Yes you never know what new friends you can make at an Arts in Action event! I am deeply grateful for Tina’s intuitive style, story sharing, personal reflections and thought provoking questions. Tina has a way of getting you to appreciate life just that little bit more and this is just one of her many amazing gifts. If you don’t already know, Tina is the brains and heart behind The Dinner Table, which brings conversation back to the dinner table. An appreciation of good food and human connection is at the core of this wonderful project so check it out!
The night kicked off with an incredible performance by award winning poet Kirsty K-Dawg Whalen whose saucy poem written purposefully for the event, tantalised us and left us hungry for more. Here is her poem for your enjoyment and if you didn’t see the live performance I encourage you to get along to Slamalamadingdong’s monthly poetry slam (3rd Thursday of the month @Bella Union), where Kirsty works as a crew member and regularly performs her amazing poetry.
Following the film we heard from the wonderful Claire Leach of FareShare, who provided us with numerous insights into the local situation, bringing home the truth that in Victoria we have 200,000 people classified as food insecure, meaning they don’t know where or when their next meal will come from. FareShare do an amazing job at supporting these individuals through its dedicated team of volunteers who prepare thousands of meals from the food collected from supermarkets and other outlets. The film clearly showed the importance of having committed individuals willing to collect, prepare and distribute otherwise wasted food, to the population of hungry people in our community. Arts in Action will donate 40% of the proceeds from this screening to FareShare so a massive thanks to everyone who came along!
A wonderful highlight for me was when I discovered that Claire from FareShare is interested in taking up Kirsty’s poem for use by the organisation. Any collaboration that emerges between special guests always gets me a little excited! This is the perfect marriage of arts (Kirsty) and action (FareShare). I just love it when these worlds collide!
The night was captured yet again by our wonderful resident photographer Richard Piscioneri, who, when not traveling the world for his 1 camera 1000 smiles project, very graciously donates his time to photograph local events like ours. Check out the rest of his pics from the night on the Arts in Action facebook page. He also co-runs a professional wedding album business JC Photo Albums, which he comes to with over 17 years previous experience as a wedding photographer.
Thanks again to the sensational bar staff and crew at Bella Union. If you haven’t sampled their spiced wine yet you are definitely missing out it is gorgeous! Next time you’re down there be sure to try it out, perfect on these bitterly cold nights. Last but not least thanks to dear friend and burlesque beauty Tania Perez, who helps with whatever is needed and is the gorgeous lady at the merch table collecting emails.
Next month we stray a little from the format by presenting a live simulcast of the finale of the SBS documentary Go Back to Where You Came From, in partnership with Amnesty International Australia. While you could easily watch it at home, if you venture out to Bella Union on the 30th August, you will have the chance to be part of something bigger… a bigger lounge room…a bigger screen…spiced wine and special live guests. Check out the details here and stay tuned for announcements about special guests by signing up to the Arts in Action mailing list. I can’t wait for next month!