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Arabesque | Ariadne's Thread
from inside women's spaces


Janelle Mendham, Jan Dineen, Christl Berg, Llewellyn Negrin

A beautifully unruly and gently subversive improvised play based on the drawing room activities that once displayed a woman's accomplishment and breeding.  


Initially an in-situ response to Hadley's Hotel Public Drawing-Room for Ladies (1896) - Arabesque extended, re-invented and now travels. 

                          She’s unravelling literally and existentially                                       and she’s doing it with abandon


                                                                    disorderly and disruptive and not amenable to discipline or control             unruly   



mix up something with something else

                                                                                                                                absurd                             wildly unreasonable, illogical


         Spillage business         In industrial production, spillage is the loss of production output due to production of a series of defective or unacceptable products


 a sideway not belonging fancy naughtiness

                                                                                                                                           unchartered waters                places not yet explored     

                                                                          unfamiliar situations in general        


                                    a complex structure in the inner ear containing the organs of hearing and balance                 labyrinth

extremely beautiful and delicate                                           



 He asks what she is doing?           ‘a long crocheted line that has no meaning’ she says       ' ..ahhh .. just like life ' he replies

Its immediate effects are to cause the blood to circulate more freely, and promote the actions of various organs of the body.   
The Dictionary of Daily Wants, London, Houston and Sons, 1880 . p361
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Public Drawing Room for Ladies advertised in the  

ORIENT LINE GUIDE: Chapters for Travellers by Sea and by Land.    Fifth and Cheaper Edition,   1896, 


Arabesque | Ariadne's thread  conceived for the Unravelling Ornament exhibition

@ Hadley's Orient Hotel curated by Dr Llewellyn Negrin

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PROGRAM interrupted and re imagined DUE TO COVID


Photography and video @ Hadleys - Amy Jackett

all other Photography - Chris Brown

many thanks

Anne Marshall  Oboe @  Hadley's, MAC, TMAG, Tasmanian Wool Centre
Ruth Hadlow  Project development through the Creative Research Program
Christopher Brown  Photography 

Amy Jackett  Curator, Hadley's Orient Hotel
Michael McLaughlin  Manager, Programs & Community Engagement, TMAG 
Veronica Marshall   Program Delivery Officer, TMAG 
Margaret Young   Museum Curator, Tasmanian Wool Centre, Ross
Mark Hosking  Operations Manager, Maritime Museum of Tasmania
Camille Reynes  Curator, Maritime Museum of Tasmania
Emily Quinn  Marketing Manager, Maritime
Museum of Tasmania

Hadley's Orient Hote
Moonah Arts Centre (MAC)
Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG)
Tasmanian Wool Centre, Ross
Maritime Museum of Tasmania

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