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Australia’s Own Gross National Cool


Event Status

The Breakfast Club is a series of talks events, presented in partnership with the Next Wave Festival, and held at breakfast time: on weekdays at 8am, on weekends at 10am.

We’re interested in how the world and art collide. In a time of intense political confusion, it’s hard to articulate the changes so many want to see. Artistic practice, with its complex arsenal of the subconscious, is well placed to be a key player.

We’re not interested in expert-led formats; we want big opinions, good discussion and
personal stories. And coffee (that’s important).

Each event runs for two hours, and will be punctuated by a series of provocations from artists, key thinkers and our international curators-in-residence.

Arrive at any point. Pull up a chair and a croissant. And dive on in.

In the 1990s when their economy was having a truly excellent time of it, the exporting of their culture was known as the ‘Gross National Cool.’ It must be obvious to everyone now that Asia is where it’s at, and it’s going to remain that way for some time. Good news is that Australia is geographically and economically part of this movement. So when will our culture catch up? That is – when will Australia finally be cool?

Hosted by Artistic Director, Next Wave: Emily Sexton

Artists: Casey Ayres, Nathan Beard and Abdul Abdullah (Greater Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere), Michele Lee (Talon Salon), Phuong Ngo (Fresh Produce)

International speaker: Edward Sanderson

Guest speaker: Roj Amedi (The Global Foundation)

With the Global Foundation.


The Wheeler Centre

176 Little Lonsdale Street Melbourne Victoria 3000

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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which we work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, past and present.