Director's Message

Director's Message

SCCI, a Hub series fashioned as the newest evolution of the re-named Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation, launches in April 2018.

Our aim is to provide a vibrant platform for the exchange of the most challenging and engaging ideas on architecture and fashion, within the broader context of culture. Fashion, in particular, has lacked serious attention as a sophisticated, intellectually rich and multifaceted mode of creative expression. Through SCCI, we seek to elevate it to a more prominent position alongside other artforms, and begin a conversation that is long overdue. The very best of contemporary ideas on architecture, and its intersections with cultural, social, aesthetic and economic life, will also be explored intensively at SCCI.

Our forum for this deep engagement is two concentrated public event programmes in Sydney each year, over the five-year period 2018-2022: SCCI Fashion Hub, each April/May, and SCCI Architecture Hub, running September/October.

Three VIP speakers anchor the first iteration of five Fashion Hubs, which fans out over 17 days from 5–21 April 2018 to encompass more than 40 separate events.

The core triumvirate hails from France, India and Japan and collectively signals fashion history, design and publishing. Transnational boundaries blur and East meets West as Emmanuel Coquery, Akira Minagawa and Bandana Tewari’s thinking collide in a mash-up that expands outward through the SCCI Fashion Hub duration.

Deep Dive Forum days delve into the topic through the prism of words, ethics and the petites mains craftsmanship. Fashion films and fashion collecting add weight to these high-focus segments. Studio newGen looks to the young with age-specific workshops focussed on topic-related upcycling, animation, illustration and photography, whilst SCCI Atelier engages embroidery fashionistas as well as sutra stitching meditators. Textiles talk, performers perform and The Art of Fashion takes its rightful place in the cultural firmament.

In short, the past, present and potential future of fashion are held up to scrutiny, the latter debated in panels and via films created in competition by AFTRS students.

The SCCI space is dressed, the protagonists are ready and you are invited to engage whether in person, via podcast, Instagram or Google. You might like to put your finery on? You might prefer to come armed with notebook or needle (petites mains). Learning satisfies and SCCI Fashion looks to open your mind.

Dr Gene Sherman AM
Founder and Executive Director
Sherman Centre for Culture and Ideas

In line with SCAF's philanthropic mission, some SCCI Hub events will be free, with the ticket price returned upon attendance.

SCCI Hubs are presented in partnership with the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS), the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS), and Barangaroo Delivery Authority.



Fashion Hub


5 – 21
April 2018


17 days. 40+ witty and challenging talks, performances, workshops and films. International special guests. Full programme and tickets February 2018.

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Featured Guests

Emmanuel Coquery

Dr Emmanuel Coquery is a Doctor of Art History, a specialist of the art of the Grand Siècle, an educator, museum director, author of numerous publications and a curator of diverse exhibitions for museums in Nantes, Troyes and the Louvre. In 2011 he joined CHANEL as Director of Heritage, where he led the production of the CHANEL CULTURE series of shows with French and foreign museum partners, and in May 2017 he was appointed a director of the Rmn - Grand Palais, where he is in charge of programming exhibitions.

Akira Minagawa

Born in 1967 in Tokyo, designer Akira Minagawa is founder of minä perhonen, a fashion and textile brand working to produce fashion that does not lose its allure through time. Minagawa has felt a sympathy with Scandinavian culture since he first visited Finland at 19: minä in Finnish means “I” and “perhonen” is “butterfly”, with a ‘wish to make many beautiful designs like those of butterfly wings’. His design work now expands to furniture, tableware, children’s toys, carpets, shoes, encompassing almost the full gamut of the quotidian. Akira also creates illustrations for magazines, newspapers and books.

Bandana Tewari

Bandana Tewari is the Editor-at-Large for Vogue India and one of India's foremost authorities on fashion. She a regular contributor to Business of Fashion, was listed among the most powerful figures in fashion for 2012 (Industrie magazine) and is a member of the 2017 BoF500. Her pieces have appeared in The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, US Vogue and UK Vogue, as well as leading Indian journals. She both scripted and hosted 50 episodes of Simply Style, India’s first primetime TV show on fashion.

Caroline Baum

Caroline Baum has been a presenter and executive producer at ABC TV and on radio, Editorial Director of Booktopia, a contributor to major national publication and online sites, and a judge for several literary awards including the Stella prize. She is the author of ONLY: A Singular Memoir. At Conde Nast in the UK, she researched The Vogue Book of Fashion Photography; as a former features editor of Vogue Australia, Caroline has a long standing interest in fashion.


Mary Brown

Mary Brown studied embroidery at the Royal School of Needlework at Hampton Court Palace, England, in 2000–2001. In her creative practice Mary works to commissions and for exhibitions across many fields of embroidery, specialising in goldwork and bead and sequin embroidery. Her book on goldwork embroidery was published and distributed internationally in 2007. She has taught in the Fashion & Textile Department at the University of Technology, Sydney, since 2007.

Rachael Cassar

Designer Rachael Cassar explores the process of deconstruction, reconstruction and up-cycling to produce one-off alternative fashion pieces. Carefully crafted – sculpting and collaging directly onto the mannequin – discarded materials are re-purposed and re-contextualised, giving them new life. Rachael’s collections have been seen on catwalks in Australia, Italy, the US and the UK, received extensive media coverage internationally, and acknowledged as innovative and forward thinking, with celebrities including Rihanna wearing her creations.

Grant Cowan

Grant Cowan is a visual and graphic artist who specialises in fashion illustration. After completing a Diploma of Fashion Design at East Sydney Technical College, he lectured in fashion illustration before moving to London to join illustration agency, working on campaigns for Harper’s BAZAAR, Marie Claire, Elle and others. Grant’s brightly coloured models were perfect for collector Charlotte Smith’s fashion memoir Dreaming of Dior (HarperCollins, 2009). Cowan’s work also featured in Charlotte’s Dreaming of Chanel (2010) and One Enchanted Evening (2017).

Rod Freedman

Rod Freedman is an independent producer and director whose works have won many Australian and international awards and screened in dozens of international film festivals. Since 1998, Rod and his partner have run Change Focus Media, producing documentaries, educational, training and promotional programs. Rod is particularly interested in stories about the individual and their life’s journeys. His most recent productions are Once My Mother and Uncle Chatzkel.

Helen Garner

Helen Garner writes novels, stories, screenplays and works of non-fiction. In 2006 she received the inaugural Melbourne Prize for Literature, and in 2016 she won the prestigious Windham-Campbell Prize for non-fiction and the Western Australian Premier’s Book Award. Her most recent book, Everywhere I Look, won the 2017 Indie Book Award for Non-Fiction.

Gary Grealy

Beginning his career working for magazines such as Cleo, Harper’s BAZAAR and Vogue, Gary Grealy soon moved to working on commissions for leading advertising agencies. His work was first exhibited at the Australian Centre of Photography in 1976 and is in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia, the Bundanon Trust and the National Portrait Gallery. Gary won the National Photographic Portrait Prize at the National Portrait Gallery in 2017.

Mella Jaarsma

Mella Jaarsma is known for her complex costume installations and focus on cultural and racial diversity embedded in clothing, the body and food. She studied at the Minerva Art Academy in Groningen, the Art Institute of Jakarta and the Indonesian Institute of the Arts in Yogyakarta. Her work has been shown in Indonesia and in Belgium, at the Biennale of Sydney, the Siasat - Jakarta Biennale, the Royal Academy of Arts London, plus others, and is in collections including the Queensland Art Gallery/ GOMA and the Singapore Art Museum. In 1988 she cofounded a space for contemporary art in Indonesia, now called the Cemeti Institute for Art & Society.

Alison Kubler

Alison Kubler is a freelance curator, writer and commentator with over 20 years' experience working in museums and galleries in Australia. She is a regular contributor to journals and magazines such as Vault, Manuscript, Art Collector and MUSEUM. Alison is a co-director of mc/k art consulting, working on curatorial projects, publishing and public art commissions, and with Mitchell Oakley Smith she co-authored a book entitled Art / Fashion in the 21st Century, published in November 2013 by Thames and Hudson UK.

Frida Las Vegas

Frida Las Vegas (aka Stavroula Adameitis) is a Sydney-based artist and designer with a professional background spanning the fashion, animation, design, editorial and film industries. An ambassador for KINDRED, the NSW Creative Industries knowledge hub, her goal is to make a positive impact across mediums using humour, colour and flair.

Peter McNeil

Dr Peter McNeil FAHA is Distinguished Professor of Design History at the University of Technology, Sydney, and Academy of Finland Distinguished Professor, Aalto University. He is Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and is the Academy’s Section Head for The Arts. He lectures internationally across historical and contemporary design, fashion and urbanism. He worked to establish Fashion Studies as a dignified academic domain within the European Humanities at Stockholm University 2008-2018. Regular critic and reviewer, his latest work Pretty Gentlemen: Macaroni Men and the Eighteenth-century Fashion World is published with Yale University Press and released in 2018.

Julie Ann Morrison

Julie Ann Morrison has worked in the fashion industry for over 30 years. As Managing Director of luxury and fashion brands including Gucci, Moschino, Guess and Bulgari, she has extensive experience of international and local markets through periods of massive social, cultural and commercial change. She is a non-executive director of Myer Holdings, Chair of Specialty Brands Australia (a Myer subsidiary which operates sass & bide, Marcs and David Lawrence) and is on Carla Zampatti’s advisory board. Julie Ann is an experienced convenor and fashion commentator, having participated in events including industry conferences and cultural conversations at the NGV and V&A.

Tara Moss

Tara Moss is an author, journalist, TV documentary maker and presenter, human rights advocate, UNICEF Ambassador and anti-cyberbullying campaigner. Her latest book Speaking Out: A 21st Century Handbook for Women and Girls was a follow up to her first non-fiction work, The Fictional Woman. She is currently writing her twelfth book and completing her PhD at the University of Sydney. Tara’s love of vintage, sewing, craft and body positivity inspired her vintage-focused blog and the digital series ‘Sewing Vintage with Tara Moss, which she hosts and produces.

Nasim Nasr

Through video, photography, performance, objects and sound, Nasim Nasr highlights complexities within contemporary notions of cultural difference, balancing and counterbalancing Western and Eastern perspectives. Nasr graduated with a BA in Graphic Design from the Art University of Tehran, Iran (2006), and a Master of Visual Arts (Research), SA School of Art, University of South Australia (2011). Her work is in prominent collections in Qatar, Dubai, the US, Germany, Singapore, Hong Kong and Australia, including the Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra.

Julia Overton

As well as working in the film industry on three continents and across all genres, including as Australian producer on the Wim Wenders film Until the End of the World (1990), Julia spent ten years in Australia’s national screen funding agencies as a development and investment executive. Since leaving Screen Australia, Julia has been working as Producer, Executive Producer, Mentor Producer and Market Place Consultant, and external assessor for government agencies in Australia and New Zealand. Julia is a long-time supporter of the emerging filmmaker sector.


Clare Press

Clare Press is a fashion journalist, author and podcaster. Her book Wardrobe Crisis: How We Went From Sunday Best to Fast Fashion was named one of The Age’s ‘Best Books’ of 2016. The spin-off 'Wardrobe Crisis' podcast further unzips the issues that face the $2.4 trillion global fashion industry, with a focus on ethics, sustainability, conscious consumerism, activism, identity and creativity. A former Vogue features director, Clare is Marie Claire’s Fashion Editor-at-Large and writes the ‘Sustainable Style’ column for Daily Life.

Kate Scardifield

Kate Scardifield is a visual artist with a research-driven, interdisciplinary and experimental studio practice. Traversing textiles, sculpture, installation and video, her work has been included in numerous exhibitions throughout Australia, New Zealand, the United States and the U.K. Kate serves on the Artist Advisory Group at the Museum of Contemporary Art and has been a Research Fellow at the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences in 2017. Kate has a PhD from the University of Sydney and is a Lecturer in the Faculty of Design Architecture and Building at UTS.

Charlotte Smith

Charlotte Smith travels the world exploring fashion history and inspirational currents. She is curator of The Darnell Collection, one of ten significant private fashion collections in the world, her exhibitions and presentations bringing to life 250 years of fashion’s beguiling story. Charlotte authored the best-selling books Dreaming of Dior and Dreaming of Chanel. Her most recent book is One Enchanted Evening.

Paul Vasileff

At just 27, Paul Vasileff’s achievements include being named the 2017 Young Australian of the Year, showing at London Fashion Week 2010 and graduating from Milan’s Europeo Istituto di Design. A perfectionist with a penchant for classic beauty, the Adelaide designer has a hand in every facet of the business and designs every couture gown that the Paolo Sebastian label creates in his South Australian atelier. Paolo Sebastian gowns have been worn at the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes, and his work has been published in Vogue Australia, Martha Stewart Weddings and Harper's BAZAAR Australia.

Joanna Weinberg

Joanna Weinberg is an award-winning Sydney-based performer, writer, songwriter and director. She has written and performed in 14 one-woman shows; recorded five albums of original songs; written the book, lyrics and music for three full-length musicals, including the award-winning Lifeforce (2013); and was songwriter and co-script writer of the romantic comedy film Goddess (2013), for which she was nominated for a FCCI music award. Joanna is a Music Maestro for the Arts Health Institute and directs a community choir in Millers Point.

About SCCI

More About SCCI & Dr. Gene Sherman

The Sherman Centre for Culture and Ideas (SCCI) is a new not-for-profit venture evolving from eminent gallerist Dr Gene Sherman’s 30+ years of creating innovative cultural enterprises and programmes, through the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation and Sherman Galleries.

Culture in its broadest sense has been Dr Sherman’s focus since childhood: fashioning atypical clothes with her beloved grandmother Gita, visiting galleries with her artist aunt Sylvia, encouraged to read voraciously by her journalist turned businessman father Eric, together with university art history studies and advanced literature degrees – Gene’s world continues to be defined principally by visual vocabulary and the exchange of ideas.

Sherman Galleries

During the two decade-plus life of the respected Sherman Galleries, 1986-2017, the double-site Paddington-based institution worked with multiple and now celebrated artists including Shaun Gladwell, John Olsen, Mike Parr, Janet Laurence, Guan Wei, Cai Guo Qiang, Xu Bing, Wenda Gu and Zhang Huan, often in the early days of their careers. Touring exhibitions of Australian artists were mounted and dispatched to Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and various Australian cities.

Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation (SCAF)

Established in 2008 SCAF has presented 35 projects, each with a highly focused program and widely known and respected publication, which have been noted by curators, museum directors, critics and art historians throughout the Asia Pacific region and in many parts of Europe and the USA. Ai Weiwei, SANAA, Dinh Q. Lê, Yang Fudong, Jonathan Jones, Jitish Kallat, Shaun Gladwell, Janet Laurence, Christian Thompson and Brook Andrew, to name just a few artists, created often monumental installations as part of the SCAF program.

A key project at SCAF was Fugitive Structures, a four part series of architectural Pavilions (2013-17), developed in partnership with BVN, and showcasing early to mid career architects. The selected projects included Vo Trong Nghia's Green Ladder (Vietnam), Sack and Reicher + Muller with Eyal Zur's Sway (Israel), Andrew Burns' Crescent House (Australia) and Trifolium, by AR-MA's Robert Beson and Gabriele Ulacco (Australia).

Several Pavilions have had follow-on sitings. Vo Trong Nghia's Green Ladder was installed in Brisbane and will feature at a major public venue in Sydney, to be announced in early 2018. Andrew Burns' Crescent House has been permanently sited in the gardens of Melbourne's Heide Museum of Modern Art.