Sunshine Coast (Buderim)

Select Society

Postal Address:

ADFAS Sunshine Coast
PO Box 1592

ABN: 91 792 901 750

We are a not-for-profit organisation run entirely by volunteers.

We provide superbly illustrated monthly presentations by experts on diverse topics within the arts and related disciplines. Lectures are followed by refreshments and wine in a convivial atmosphere.

Our members come from many and varied backgrounds, but we are all interested in the same
thing – learning about a wide range of the arts.

There are 37 ADFAS Societies in five states.

ADFAS was founded in the United Kingdom and was introduced to Australia in 1985.


Committee 2019

Audrey Raymond
(07) 5456 2012

Membership Secretary:

Brian Smith
(07) 5445 4439

Programme for 2019

Monday 25th February (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

The Importance of Being Oscar: The Life and Works of Oscar Wilde


Somehow or other I’ll be famous, and if not famous, I’ll be notorious,” declared the young Oscar Wilde: he proved to be both! Wilde’s genius as a raconteur and coiner of epigrams made him the most quoted man in London. He translated his genius into stories, plays, poems and a novel and gained a place amongst the great Victorian writers. Wilde once stated that he had put only his talent into his works, but had put his genius into his life. Susannah Fullerton discusses Wilde’s extraordinary life story, his fall from grace and the creation of his great works of literature. Dramatic readings bring those works to life and slides provide the sort of sumptuous visual background that Wilde himself would have appreciated. 

Monday 11th March (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

What really happened on Easter Island

Dr Paul BAHN

Easter Island, or Rapa Nui, is the most isolated piece of permanently inhabited land on the planet yet it produced a most extraordinary Stone Age culture. The island contains hundreds of sophisticated coastal stone platforms, more than a thousand enormous stone statues, the richest rock art in the Pacific, and a unique writing system. This talk introduces the history of the discovery of this culture, examines its principal features and discusses what archeology and oral traditions can teach us about the island’s cultural rise and decline. It also considers the environmental crisis and what all this can teach us.

Monday 8th April (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

Venerable Venues

Mr Philip BAILEY

Concert halls have ghosts and legends including from New York’s Carnegie Hall to a leaking tin shed in the impoverished township of KwaThema, Johannesburg. This lecture looks at iconic venues such as London’s Royal Albert Hall, Vienna’s Musikverein, L’Opera in Paris and the award-winning Menuhin Hall in Surrey. It examines what makes for a “good” acoustic and the compromise between architectural and acoustical brilliance in one building.  How much would one hear in “the gods” during a piano and violin recital held in the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, a venue seating over 6000 patrons?

Monday 20th May (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

Fiesta! Festivals in Modern Mexico

Ms Chloe SAYER

Mexico has a vast range of visually splendid festivals, many featuring lavish processions and masked dances with richly decorated costumes. Although some festivals commemorate national events, most are religious in inspiration. After the Spanish conquest of 1521, priests used theatrical representation as a method of instruction. Traditionally, people display elaborate nativity scenes in their homes. The Christmas story is acted out in towns and villages: adults and children perform as shepherds and shepherdesses, hermits and devils. Other important celebrations include All Saints’ Days, All Souls’ Day, and Carnival.

Monday 24th June (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

Learn the lines and Don’t Fall Over the Furniture

Mr Robert KETTON

The title of this lecture was the great Noel Coward’s advice to a young actor. But there is more to acting than that! This is an amusing and thought-provoking lecture in which Robert will demonstrate the importance of observation, imagination and concentration when bringing a character to life. He also looks at how acting techniques are used by our politicians, preachers and con men to persuade, cajole and hector us into doing what they want. The lecture explains how actor training has helped celebrities become a potent force in today’s society.

Monday 22nd July (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

The Honourable East India Company: East-West Trade 1600-1800, Chinese Export & Chinoiserie

Ms Vivienne LAWES

The East India Company facilitated the profound exchange of ideas and artistry between the East and West – textile design, wallpaper, porcelain, furniture – and the vast trade in spices and tea. The 17th century textile trade with India, showing how the East India Company paved the way for the production of chintz is discussed. The lecture includes trade with 18th century China and the production of Chinese export pieces, such as Chinese painted silks, furniture and porcelain. It concludes with an analysis of the tea trade.

Monday 26th August (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

Gender and the Body – Kept Behind Curtains: The Story of the Nude

Mr Leslie PRIMO

The nude is still seen, and indeed has been seen for many centuries, as the pinnacle of creative artistic perfection. Throughout the history of art, the notion of the perfect body and consequently gender, has been constantly reshaped and redefined. This lecture looks at the continuing fascination with representation of the body in sculpture and in painting across the ages encompassing iconic works by Botticelli, Titian, Bernini, Degas, Renoir and Velázquez. Who were the patrons behind these images and why did they commission nudes? The lecture examines signs and symbols hidden within these seemingly enigmatic images of perfection.

Monday 23rd September (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

Abyssinia: 3000 Years of Ethiopian Art and History

Mr Christopher BRADLEY

In a series of vibrant images, the ‘Kebra Nagast’ holy book tells us of the union of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon and how their son Menelik founded the Solomonic dynasty of which Haile Selassie was the last ruling emperor. This lecture discusses how Ethiopia retains many of its ancient traditions, such as gold and silver treasures often kept in small treasuries near the 30,000 churches. Frescoes and murals bring churches to life. 3,000 varieties of Oriental Orthodox crosses are paraded each year at ‘Timkat’, Ethiopian Epiphany. The most spectacular structures are the incredible rock-cut churches of Lalibela, the fabled castles of Gondar and then there is the Ark of the Covenant . . .

Monday 21st October (Matthew Flinders College, Buderim)

For the Love of Flowers

Ms Marilyn ELM

Flowers with their infinite variety of perfume, colour and form have always provided joy for the human soul and inspiration for art and design over the centuries. Flowers feature in pagan and Christian rituals. The perfumed varieties were highly valued by medieval and Tudor gardeners. In 17th century Holland ‘Tulip Mania’ overwhelmed the country. The Victorians collected flowery exotica from all corners of the world in search of the rare and unusual. Plant and flower forms were used in design, especially Art Nouveau. This lecture is an exploration of our relationship with flowers. Are they statements of fashion or status or simply expressions of beauty to be enjoyed?

Our Lecturers in 2019

Our lecturers are all recognised experts in their fields.
They are drawn from a variety of professional backgrounds.
Six lecturers come from the UK and this year, three are from Australia.

February 25
Susannah Fullerton has a BA from the University of Auckland NZ and a postgraduate degree in Victorian literature from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland.  She currently teaches literature courses in Sydney and lectures regularly at the State Library of NSW and the Art Gallery of NSW. In 2017 Susannah was awarded an Order of Australia Medal for Services to Literature and was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of NSW. Primarily a scientific body, it extended into the arts and Susannah was the first recipient. She has been president of the Jane Austen Society of Australia for the past 18 years. She also lectures on Lord Byron, Rudyard Kipling, Oscar Wilde and the Mitford sisters

March 11
Dr Paul Bahn
studied archaeology at the University of Cambridge. He has held postdoctoral fellowships at Liverpool and London Universities and a J Paul Getty fellowship in the History of Art & the Humanities. For 8 years Paul was Vice President of the Australian Rock Art Association and now devotes time to writing and translating books on archaeology and journalistic assignments. His main interest is prehistoric art, especially rock art of the world and most notably Palaeolithic art and Easter Island art and culture. Paul instigated and led the team which searched for and discovered the first Ice Age cave art in Britain in 2003.

April 8
Philip Bailey, after taking degrees in Agricultural Economics and in Education from the University of New England, became a teacher. From 1974, he taught in Britain where – after a series of chance encounters – he joined the staff of acclaimed violinist Yehudi Menuhin. He became Yehudi Menuhin’s personal assistant, a job that was to last two decades and involved extensive travel. During these years, Philip undertook a host of duties associated with Menuhin on tour as he performed in the most ‘venerable venues’ in the world.

May 20
Chloe Sayer
, independent scholar, author and curator, specialising in Latin American art and culture and a fluent Spanish speaker, has spent many years researching ancient traditions and contemporary craft skills. In 2016 the Mexican Government awarded her the prestigious Ohtli Medal for outstanding commitment to Mexican culture. Chloe has worked extensively in the World Cultures Department of the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto and has co-curated prestigious exhibitions on Mexican culture and arts. She has written books on Mexico and the Incas and has worked on documentaries for the BBC.

June 24
Robert Ketton was educated at King’s School Tynemouth, the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne and Burton School of Speech and Drama. He migrated to Australia in 1974 to help establish Theatre in Queensland Secondary Schools. In 1976 he was appointed as a Lecturer in Theatre at the University of Southern Queensland in Toowoomba. Over the next thirty-three years Robert taught acting and directed dozens of plays for the university’s Performance Centre.

July 22
Vivienne Lawes
, lecturer, curator, author and journalist with 25 years’ experience in the art market, has a BA (Hons) from York University and an MA in Fine & Decorative Arts at Sotheby’s Institute where she leads the Modern and Contemporary Unit of Eastern Art. Vivienne has contributed to many national and international arts publications and is currently working on a book exploring themes in equine sculpture. She has co-curated many exhibitions on south-eastern Asian modern art in London and Singapore.

August 26
Leslie Primo
holds a BA in Art History and an MA in Renaissance Studies from Birkbeck College, University of London. His expertise is in Early Medieval art, Italian Renaissance art and architecture in Europe. His interest extends to Narrative Painting in the Age of Giotto and the work of Peter Paul Rubens. He was visiting lecturer in Art History at the University of Reading in 2005 and 2007, and gives lectures, guided tours and talks at the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery. Leslie lectures at the City Literary Institute, and has lectured at the National Maritime Museum and the Courtauld Institute.

September 23
Christopher Bradley
is an expert in the history and culture of the Middle East and North Africa. He is a television documentary film-maker and producer for National Geographic and the BBC. As a photographer, his work is represented in leading photographic libraries. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

October 21
Marilyn Elm,
qualified landscape architect and interior designer, is an experienced course leader in garden and landscape design and history. She’s a freelance lecturer for a variety of organisations, universities and specialist groups including the National Trust, the Horticultural Society and the Arts Society.  Marilyn has run study days, summer schools and conducted garden tours in the UK. She is passionate about promoting garden history and our gardening heritage. She has published articles and broadcast for BBC television & radio and the Discovery Channel. She is a founding member of the Yorkshire Gardens Trust and a Member of the Garden Media Guild.

Where do we meet?

In the Drama Theatre
Matthew Flinders Anglican College
Stringybark Road, Buderim
(unless otherwise specified in the Programme)

Who can join ADFAS?

Anyone with an interest in the arts or who wishes to develop an interest in the arts is very welcome.

No prior knowledge of any of the arts is needed.

Lectures are pitched at a very accessible level.

New members are very welcome.

2019 Annual Membership Fees

2019 Annual ADFAS Individual Membership $148
Couple Membership $270
Full time student $40

Why join us?

To learn more about the arts in a friendly, welcoming environment over a glass of wine and supper

To enjoy cultural and social opportunities

To join overseas tours with ADFAS lecturers

To receive our annual national magazine ArtLife

To support local young arts and local cultural heritage projects

When do we meet?

Monthly from February to October


Visitors are very welcome. We regret that visitors may attend a maximum of three lecture evenings a year.
Cost: $25 per visitor.
Bookings are required for visitors.


Listed with each lecture & the Special Interest Afternoon