Brisbane-based artist Belinda Kochanowska was going
through what she describes as the equivalent of writer’s
block before her pregnancy led to a manic period of
creativity. Over a period of six months (four in her
pregnancy and two after her daughter was born) she
produced her latest collection of 24 works called
is Your Flesh
The works give an insight to Kochanowska’s own
fascination with science and natural history as well as her
talent for photographic collage. She spent many hours
sourcing 16th, 17th and 18th century images from the public
domain collection of the British Library then digitally
morphed the images as if working with a painter’s palette.
The mix of anatomical, botanical and natural history
illustrations are used to reflect her most personal feelings
during her pregnancy and childbirth, albeit with a high
degree of imagination as an artist.
“There is a lot of fear and politics surrounding pregnancy
and there is a lot of dangerous terrain to cross when
pregnant. There’s immense pressure and judgment facing
women. I think making this work just let me be honest and
release whatever anxiety I was feeling at the time with all
the rhetoric surrounding me,” she says.
While this collection has yet to be shown publicly in
Australia it has been shown at both Photo Contemporary
(alongside works by several other Queensland artists) in
Hollywood and Photo LA, and in the UK, and works also
have been acquired by the Royal College of Obstetricians
and Gynaecologists in the UK.
See more online atwww.belindakochanowska.com
| BNE May/June 2015
Ten weeks after having massive surgery for a life threatening tumour on
his chest Matt Kershaw, just 19 at the time, was in Tanzania ready to climb
Mount Kilimanjaro. The trip had been planned before his health scare and
Kershaw initially cancelled but later, with a positive prognosis, incredibly,
his surgeon encouraged him to go. The whole experience proved to be a
turning point for Kershaw who now leads the very organisation that had
arranged his trip.
The organisation, which initially began as the brainchild of two
businessmen with a passion to help young people, has been totally
transformed under Kershaw’s leadership as CEO over the last four years.
Now called yLead it is focused on young people teaching young people to
build positive relationships and be active within their communities.
yLead works directly with about 300 schools a year in Queensland
and interstate to deliver workshops to students in upper primary to late
secondary years that are not your average sit down, listen, see a slideshow
or watch a whiteboard experience. Instead they use activities to create
experiences and set challenges that provide lessons in action.
“We firmly believe that if we engage the students in an experience not
only will they enjoy it more but those lessons will be more powerful and
pertinent because they have done it, rather than just heard it or seen it,”
Altitude Day, at Brisbane Showgrounds on 26 May, is an opportunity
to bring together hundreds of year 9 students in particular from across
the region to network and hear from inspiring people. This year those
speakers will include Caitlyn Shadbolt, the 19-year-old country singer
from Gympie who made the top five in the last series of
since launched her music career; Chris Raine who, at 23, started Hello
Sunday Morning to challenge young people to change their binge drinking
ways; and Rowie McEvoy, the self-made millionaire and health and fitness
guru, who is the veteran of the speaking line-up but also the most popular,
according to Kershaw.
Altitude Day is the flagship for yLead which also hosts the event in four
more cities in Queensland and five capital cities interstate.
“What we’re really trying to say to these students is ‘you can be a great
leader and here’s how you do it’. It’s about unlocking their potential.”
Kershaw says they want to dispel the myth that leaders come only from
school captains and prefects. “Leadership is something that everyone
engages in because at different points in our lives, every one of us may need
to be a leader in a particular situation, even with friends or with family at
home. Our definition of leadership is not about a badge or a title but it’s
about making the world you touch a better place and asking ‘how can I be a
leader at my work or school or sports club’.”
The organisation is independent and self-funded. Its school presenters
are all aged in their early 20s and supported by volunteers. At 29 Kershaw
says (with a slight chortle) he is considered a dinosaur by his colleagues and
already he is looking out for the talents who will succeed him. “Twenty-
year-olds are the future of this organisation. They have the most connection
and the most impact,” he says.