Home > What's on > The Salon Series: hidden histories

The Salon Series: hidden histories

21 July 2022, 7:00pm8:30pm
Cost$25, and $20 concession and State Library Victoria Cultural Members
Location Conversation Quarter
The Quad
Accessibility Has wheelchair access

In the winter instalment of our Salon Series, we’re digging deep into the archives and uncovering untold stories and perspectives.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Geraldine Brooks will discuss her first book in seven years, Horse. Inspired by a true story, the novel connects three narratives surrounding a famous US thoroughbred racehorse to explore legacies of racism, horse racing and art.

The event will open with a poetry reading by Flora Chol, whose work deconstructs unnatural systems and serves to place the human voice in a state of unapologetic truth and power. 

To close the evening, enjoy a transporting musical performance by Mindy Meng Wang 王萌, whose unique compositions explore the fertile space between Chinese classical and Western contemporary music.  

Join us for an evening of archival artistry, as we drag what’s out of sight into the light. 

About the event

Enjoy a complimentary drink upon arrival. The bar will be open before, during and after the event.

Please note: general tickets are $25, and $20 for concession and State Library Victoria Cultural members, plus a one-off transaction fee of $4.40 per order. Tickets for First Nations people are free. Ticket includes one drink upon arrival.

Presented in partnership with the Wheeler Centre

Book Now

About Geraldine Brooks

Australian-born Geraldine Brooks is an author and journalist who grew up in Sydney’s western suburbs. She worked for the Sydney Morning Herald, and in 1982 she won the Greg Shackleton scholarship to the journalism master’s program at Columbia University. Later she worked for the Wall Street Journal, where she covered crises in the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans.

In 2006 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in fiction for her novel March. Her novels Caleb’s crossing, People of the book and The secret chord were New York Times bestsellers, and Year of Wonders is an international bestseller, translated into more than 25 languages. She is also the author of the acclaimed non-fiction works Nine parts of desire and foreign correspondence.

In 2011 she presented Australia’s prestigious Boyer Lectures, later published as The idea of home. In 2016 she was appointed Officer in the Order of Australia for her services to literature. Geraldine Brooks divides her time between Sydney and Massachusetts and has two sons.

About Flora Chol

Flora Chol Is Melbourne based South Sudanese writer, poet and activist. Flora migrated to Australia with her mother, brothers and sister in 2003. Flora describes herself as ‘an earthly black woman writing in a stream of literary consciousness’. 

In May 2019, Flora published her debut, a poetic anthology, Tomorrow’s dream. With writings from an unprovoked sense of creativity, the themes that are explored in her work delve into the complexities in society and the dynamics of growing up as a young South Sudanese woman in the Australian Diaspora. As a pan-Africanist, Flora explores many themes and discourses which advocate for a free, self-reliant, and self-defining Africa.

She embodies these beliefs through arguments that predominately deconstruct present-day neo-colonial regimes. Flora is a devoted mother and spends most of her time navigating motherhood, studying & igniting her creativity. 

About Mindy Meng Wang 王萌

Mindy Meng Wang 王萌 is a versatile Chinese/Australian composer and world-class modern guzheng player. She was born and trained in China and studied western musicology in the UK before emigrating to Australia. A contemporary pioneer of the guzheng, she introduces the ancient Chinese horizontal harp into many western genres, including experimental, jazz, western classical, electronic and improvisation.

Her work is an important part of a significant movement of Chinese musicians redefining and reinvigorating their musical tradition on the global stage. Her long-term vision is to create a strong voice for young female composers and artists of Chinese heritage and to create a deeper and reciprocal musical connection between Australia and China.

Phoenix rising is her breath-taking new album which features a range of collaborative pieces with artists from across the musical spectrum. Mindy has also released a collaborative album with Tim Shiel, titled Nervous energy 一触即发 to critical acclaim. 

Planning your visit

State Library Victoria is a Child Safe Organisation. Children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

Read about our COVID-safe Library.

When purchasing a ticket to a Library event, you agree to our Terms and Conditions - attending Library events.