Saturday, December 29, 2012



I am very pleased to announce my next photographic exhibition Stop Time: Ferntree Gully.

It will be held at Burrinja Café Gallery, Burrinja Cultural Centre, Upwey from 8 Feb 2013 to 17 Mar 2013. Please note the new start date: Friday 8 February!

Burrinja Cultural Centre
© Barbara Oehring

Come and view:

some favourites from my 2012 community project exhibition A Year in Ferntree Gully.

Framed prints from this series will be available to purchase for the first time.

© Barbara Oehring

new images

Full moon
© Barbara Oehring

and images not shown before

Quarry cliff detail
© Barbara Oehring

STOP TIME: FERNTREE GULLY will be officially opened in the Burrinja Café Gallery by Peter Craven, well known culture critic on Tuesday 19 February 2013.

Burrinja Cultural Centre
Cnr Glenfern Road and Matson Drive
Upwey VIC 3158

Melway Reference: Map 75 B12

Open Tuesday to Sunday

Phone: 9754 8723


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Café Phone: 9754 5707

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Barbara Miller's "William Cooper: Gentle Warrior"

The Commemoration of the William Cooper Walk in Melbourne on 6 December 2012 was followed by Meet Barbara Miller, the author of "William Cooper: Gentle Warrior, Standing Up for Australian Aborigines and Persecuted Jews".

Meet the Author and Book Signing took place at 425 Collins Street, a 1930's heritage listed building next to where 74 years ago the Aboriginal activist William Cooper and members of the Australian Aborigines League tried to hand a letter to the German Consul-General to protest against the Nazis' treatment of the Jews.

Collins Street, Melbourne
© Barbara Oehring 2012

Barbara Miller was inspired by William Cooper's story to write the recently published book. She tells us that the book is primarily about William Cooper but also a little about her as a white woman married into an Aboriginal family.

Barbara Miller
© Barbara Oehring 2012

The grandson of William Cooper, Alf Turner (Uncle Boydie) who led the re-enactment walk has written a Foreword to Barbara Miller's book. He was present at the book signing.

Uncle Boydie
© Barbara Oehring 2012

A member of the Aboriginal community from the Northern Territory at the book signing. 

© Barbara Oehring 2012

Bibliographic Information
Title: William Cooper, Gentle Warrior: Standing Up for Australian Aborigines and Persecuted Jews
Author: Barbara Miller
Publisher: Xlibris Corporation, 2012
ISBN: 1477155945, 9781477155943

Barbara Miller talks about her new book:

Friday, December 7, 2012

WILLIAM COOPER Re-enactment Walk


William Cooper (1860-1941) was an Australian Aboriginal activist of Yorta Yorta decent. He was also a man who stood up for persecuted Jews.

On 6 December 1938 William Cooper and members of the Australian Aborigines League walked from his Footscray home to the German Consulate in Collins Street, Melbourne. They tried to present a resolution condemning the treatment of Jews on Kristallnacht but were refused.

I was fortunate to witness a re-enactment of this walk on 6 December 2012. It was led by William Cooper's grandson Alf (Uncle Boydie) Turner.

Aboriginal and Jewish Community members were welcomed at the William Cooper Justice Centre in William Street by the Acting Director, Court Services, Jon Cina.

The building 223 William St (on the corner of Lonsdale St) is named after William Cooper. It is part of Melbourne's legal precinct.

William Cooper Justice Centre
© Barbara Oehring 2012

William Cooper's great-grandson Kevin Russell gave a speech to the gathering at the William Cooper Justice Centre.

Kevin Russell
© Barbara Oehring 2012

Alf (Uncle Boydie) Turner then led the party on the walk to Collins Street for a re-enactment of the handover to Germany's Honorary Consul-General in Melbourne, Michael Pearce SC.

Uncle Boydie
© Barbara Oehring 2012


Alf 'Boydie' Turner with copy of William Cooper's petition,
descendants and members of the Aboriginal and Jewish communities
Collins St, Melbourne
© Barbara Oehring 2012

Michael Pearce SC
Germany's Honorary Consul-General in Melbourne
© Barbara Oehring 2012

The German Embassy fully supported the commemoration, Michael Pearce said. "I feel it's been an opportunity to right a wrong from the past".

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Birding at Lilydale Lake Wetland

On a hot spring evening I stopped at Lilydale Lake Wetland for a short bird walk.

I was delighted to discover a Buff-banded Rail

Buff-banded Rail
Gallirallus philippensis
© Barbara Oehring 2012

and very surprised to find a Pink-eared Duck - a single bird (drake) on a post with a nesting box.

Pink-eared Duck
Malacorhynchus membranaceus
© Barbara Oehring 2012

 Next was a Great Cormorant,

Great Cormorant
Phalacrocorax carbo
© Barbara Oehring 2012 

a male Superb Fairy-wren

Superb Fairy-wren
Malurus cyaneus
© Barbara Oehring 2012

and at the end of my walk I saw a pair of Purple Swamphen bathing.

Purple Swamphen
Porphyrio porphyrio
© Barbara Oehring 2012