Tuesday, January 19, 2021

She’s a Brisbane girl!

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Check out Maya’s story in the Museum of Brisbane’s new exhibition 100% Brisbane, writes RAJNI ANAND LUTHRA

When Maya Peres Bhatt first came here two years ago, she thought Brisbane seemed a lot like Mangalore, her home town in India.
Perhaps that’s why she fell in love with the city instantly.
Maya Peres Bhatt
“It’s warm and sunny,” she told Indian Link. “And not just in the weather, mind you! The people are warm and welcoming too!”
The 21-year-old is part of the grand new exhibition that opens shortly, called 100% Brisbane.
One hundred Brisbane residents will have their stories told in this exciting and unusual exhibition, which aims to ‘paint a living breathing picture’ of the people that make up this city.
One of the lucky hundred, is apni Maya.
Joining her in this exhibition will be people from 15 different nationalities, who speak 30 different languageS, and who range in age from 4 weeks to 84 years. There are five Indigenous Australian members and 10 LGBTI residents, including one transgender person.
Based on data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, each person selected represents one per cent of the city’s population. Together, they will showcase the multicultural population of Brisbane, and reveal its identity.
Each person will tell their story in a 90-minute film. You can also learn of their opinions on a number of issues, their beliefs and attitudes.
Also included in this unique exhibition, according to a Museum statement, are “artwork and objects from defining moments throughout the city’s history – from the dispossession of Aboriginal people and the harsh beginnings of a penal colony, to the consuming and devastating floods and tram era”.
Museum of Brisbane Director Peter Denham says, “Each person’s voice in the Brisbane DNA community provides an insight into who we are, how the people of Brisbane have shaped the city, and how we have been shaped by some of the defining features of this place.”
The “100%” concept comes from Berlin-based theatre company Rimini Protokoll. It makes use of hundred people, in interactive settings, to reveal the ‘look and feel’ of the city they call home. Berlin, San Diego and Paris have so far featured, and closer home, Melbourne and Darwin.
These events though, have been in the form of stage productions, while Brisbane makes it a first, not only as an exhibition, but an evolving one at that, which will run for three years.
Maya Peres Bhatt.Indian Link
Some of the newest Brisbanites are sojourning international students like Maya.
Maya came here to do a Masters in Integrated Marketing Communication at the Queensland University of Technology. She graduates shortly and is currently looking for work in marketing or business development.
Of course, she would like to stay on in Brisbane, that goes without saying.
“To my mind, Sydney and Melbourne are like Delhi and Bombay!” Maya laughed. “My family were seriously considering Monash Uni for me, but I’m quite happy to have made it to QUT. I much prefer Brisbane, which as I said, is like Mangalore – where the pace of life is less dramatic. In my first few days here for instance, I thought even the bus drivers were so helpful! That really warmed my heart, as a young girl away from her family for the first time, in a strange city. And when strangers smiled and greeted me every day, I couldn’t help but be drawn into the friendly culture of this city.”
Plus of course, the multicultural nature of the city was attractive too, and the education opportunities it offered.
It’s no surprise then Maya wants to give back to the city that welcomed her with open arms.
“I feel so honoured to be a part of this great exhibition,” Maya revealed. “As an international student, I’m really an outsider, but to be considered as an inherent part of this city, a Brisbane girl, is heart-warming! I’m going to give my 100 percent to this city, and call it home.”
100% Brisbane opens at the Museum of Brisbane on 15 July
Photo: Russell Shakespeare

- Advertisement -
Previous articleTeaching kids to code
Next articleInhale, exhale
Rajni Anand Luthra
Rajni Anand Luthra
Rajni is the Editor of Indian Link.

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Ep8: Indian links in Indigenous Australian poet Ali Cobby Eckermann’s life

To celebrate NAIDOC week 2020 (between 8-15 November) I spoke to Yakunytjatjara poet Ali Cobby Eckermann about her time in India where she taught...

Ep 7: In the case of Sushant Singh Rajput

  The torrid and high-octane Sushant Singh Rajput case has been fodder for Indian people and press for the last few months. The actor’s tragic...

Ep 6: The Indian LGBTQ+ community in 2020

  It’s been two years since the world’s largest democracy repealed the draconian Section 377 which used to allow discrimination against homosexual people. Only this...

Latest News

Seniors, adult, match, cricket, sport, outdoors, park, day, ball, holidays,

Have you registered yet for National Backyard Cricket Day?

  If you played gully cricket as a child in India, you're probably already into backyard cricket. Well, here's your chance to do a bit of...
indian diaspora

India has world’s largest diaspora: UN

  India has the world's largest diaspora with about 18 million people born there now living abroad, according to John Wilmoth, the director of UN's...
netflix film tribhanga

Review: Tribhanga (Netflix)

  The great thing about Kajol is she can light up a scene as few stars do, with her zeal to enthral. The flip side...

Tandav on Amazon Prime: REVIEW and backlash

  Tandav opens with a raging kisaan andolan in Greater Noida over a government decision to turn farm land into a SEZ for urbanisation. Soon,...
lilly singh

WATCH: Lilly Singh’s rivalry with her overachieving ‘cousin’, Kamala Harris

  "Growing up I always got compared to my Indian cousins," shares Lilly Singh, reminding us of those unforgettable sibling rivalries we've all experiences at...