Magic sticks

Last night I went to the annual fundraiser for the Graham F Smith Peace Trust, along with most of the other Trustees of the Suzanne Elliott Charitable Trust. We also went to an event put on by them a few weeks ago at the Norwood Town Hall, featuring performances of various sorts by secondary school students on themes of peace, social justice and environmental sustainability. Both events were terrific and highlighted how important it is to take action and do things to create a better world.

Last night, the guest speaker for the event was an artist based in Victoria, Bill Kelly. He has been creating art for many years, and has pursued themes relating to peace, nonviolence and anti-war activities during that time. It was moving and inspiring to hear him speak. One thing he said that struck a chord with me was when he spoke about his pencil not as a ‘pencil’ but as a ‘magic stick’ with which we can make new things that have not been there before and contribute to change in the world. This brought back the work of Sarah Sentilles, whom I wrote about here earlier in the year, and her thoughts about art as a way to start to think about broader social change. For many of us who are not ‘artists’, we can still use our creativity in our lives and work, to make changes in our communities or families, or in the relationships we have with anyone really. We are ourselves little magic sticks perhaps…

Anyway, the Graham Smith Peace Trust is a fantastic organisation that in its own specific way is contributing to creative and innovative change in the world. It was a treat to be among such good people, doing positive and life-enhancing things. As part of the evening, they announced their major award for this year, a $10000 grant, which went to the team making a documentary film about Bill Kelly (the speaker for the night). A great way to acknowledge a lifetime of work on his part and to assist the film makers in their work on this project. Their was also an art auction, a raffle, some funny prizes, some great entertainment, a lovely meal and great company.

Here are some pics…


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3 Responses to Magic sticks

  1. Kathy says:

    Looks like everyone had a good time 🙂 I remember Graham well as he drove the water truck at Roxby and was a good friend of Michael’s stepfather. He was a great bloke.

  2. Pingback: Led by young people | Stories of buttons and bread

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