The PRWIRE Press Releases http:// 2014-12-21T07:05:35Z Holiday Sale 2014-12-21T07:05:35Z holiday-sale Independent Designers Emporium is hosting a fabulous sale of The Wishes Collection from 3 Wind Knots.  The sale which runs over the Christmas period gives buyers the chance to obtain these beautiful, handmade sliver jewellery limited edition items with 25% off the full price until 5th January. 3 Wind Knots design and hand make all their items in Latvia. This unique jewellery collection is inspired by nature and all items are made from sustainable materials like silver, bronze and leather. "Once again we see handmade sustainable collections meeting the price points of the mass produced. The collection includes pieces like the hand stamped silver letter necklaces and coordinate bracelets  - which are our favourites and have been top sellers throughout the year". Say Australian homewares platform Independent Designers Emporium.  You can find 3 Wind Knots sale here - available while stocks last IT’S NOT TOO LATE TO GIVE THE GIFT EVERYONE WANTS THIS CHRISTMAS, A MOVIE EVOUCHER! 2014-12-19T01:59:56Z it-s-not-too-late-to-give-the-gift-everyone-wants-this-christmas-a-movie-evoucher With new research showing awareness and usage of gift cards is now above 99% in Australia* and movies remaining as the most popular cultural activity in Australia according to the Bureau of Statistics, the ideal gift this Christmas is a Movie Gift Card from Australia and New Zealand’s largest exhibitor, Event Cinemas, Greater Union, Birch Carroll & Coyle and Moonlight Cinemas. If you have left your Christmas shopping and are left at a loose end, Event Cinema now offers movie eVouchers! You can order eVouchers from the comfort of your desk or living room couch and they will be delivered instantly to your loved one, friend or work colleague – last minute Christmas shopping couldn’t be easier! Alternatively, giving a movie gift card is giving the experience of adventure, romance, drama and comedy plus with first-to-market new “greeting card” style Christmas themed cards and dedicated designs for the premium movie experiences of Vmax and Gold Class, movie gift cards are an ideal gift solution for all ages – Grandmas through to your niece or nephew! Movie gift cards and eVouchers can be charged in values from $15 to $1000 or more and give loved ones the freedom to choose the film they want to see, redeem for delicious food and drinks, 3D experiences, Gold Class and more.  The convenience and flexibility are the major reasons why new research shows that the average number of gift cards purchased by Australians has increased from five to eight between 2008 and 2014.  Christmas Movie Gift Cards and eVouchers are on sale this year in readiness for what’s anticipated to be the biggest year at the box office in history with 2015 blockbuster releases including new chapters of Star Wars, The Avengers, Fast and The Furious, James Bond, Mad Max and Jurassic Park, plus hotly anticipated new films including 50 Shades of Grey and Minions. On top of this, the 2014-15 summer line-up is bursting with big hits including the next chapters of The Hunger Games and Night At The Museum, the final instalment of The Hobbit trilogy, the latest smash from Disney Pixar Big Hero 6, the family spin-off from the Madagascar movies, Penguins and the much-talked about directorial debuts from Angelina Jolie and Russell Crowe, Unbroken and The Water Diviner.      Movie Gift Cards and eVouchers are on sale online now at,, at cinema box offices and in leading retailers across Australia and New Zealand. Greeting card designs are available exclusively from cinemas, online and in Woolworths supermarkets in Australia. Gifting ideas: - Colleague: Secret Santa present - Husband: Gold class so that he’ll take you to the movies on Valentine’s Day - Wife: girls night out or Chicks at the Flicks - Sibling: head to the movies to escape your family on Boxing Day! You could even line up your movie going year by gifting these cards to all your family!   ENDS Sneaky Santa, the most annoying game of the holidays 2014-12-19T01:58:44Z sneaky-santa-the-most-annoying-game-of-the-holidays SYDNEY, Australia - I think it's safe to say that mobile gaming has moved away from it's humble beginnings. In the midst of this one development studio has created a simple game using the tried and tested gameplay that has taken mobile gaming to where it is today.Sneaky Santa is an homage to all the most annoying and difficult platformers in the last two generations. The gameplay is similar to Mario and Duke Nukem with the difficulty of getting a thread through the eye of a needle.We played the game for almost 45 minutes attempting to complete the final level, only for the developer to laugh at us claiming that only one man has ever completed 'Level 7'... himself.Sneaky Santa is incredible in it's simplicity. 2D graphics, 2 music loops and some awkward sound effects really bring the idea the developer had for this game to life."We wanted to recreate the kind of games that we used to play as kids. The games that you couldn't save, if you died it was bad luck and start again." stated Nickolas Kola, the games designer. "We didn't focus on the graphics or sounds just the physics and gameplay. That is what makes a really good platformer." Sneaky Santa is available on the Google Play store and is awaiting approval from Apple. Download it from the Google Play Store: What's in the NYE Qbag? QT Sydney helps its guests celebrate New Years’s in Style! 2014-12-19T01:55:19Z whats-in-the-nye-qbag-qt-sydney-helps-its-guests-celebrate-new-years-s-in-style-1 Sydney’s hip designer hotel, QT Sydney is excited to announce another creative collaboration with a number of luxury products to create the inaugural NYE Qbag. The bag will include a number of luxury products from MJ Bale clothiers, Estee Lauder, Uspa skincare, Eleven hair product, cosmetic retailer Sephora, premium coffee Espresso di Manfredi, handcrafted vodka Grey Goose, spaQ Sydney and British lingerie purveyor Agent Provocateur with a total value of approximately $300. The Qbag will be gifted to all guest staying at QT Sydney over New Year’s Eve to show QT’s appreciation of its loyal guests and to celebrate the festive season. Everything in the bag helps guests celebrate the new year in style from looking glamorous for the evenings celebrations to unwinding the day after! Whats in the bag: - A $50 Sephora Gift Card - Uspa gift pack valued at - Healing Hands - Nourish Milk cleanser - Moisture Control Lotion - Mricale Hair Treatment by Eleven Australia - MJ Bale Pocketchiefs valued - Espresso di Manfredi coffee - A 50ml bottle of Greg Goose - Estee Lauder Lip Stick - A voucher for 25% off at QT Sydney’s award winning spaQ - Agent Provocateur velvet key ring and private fitting with strawberries and sparkling The QT NYE Gift bag will become an annual tradition which is expected to grow in size and stature each year. What's going to be in the 2015 NYE Qbag? -ENDS- Ready to Kick Butt in 2015? Motivational Guru Shares 3 Tips to Make the New Year Your Year 2014-12-18T06:08:24Z ready-to-kick-butt-in-2015-motivational-guru-shares-3-tips-to-make-the-new-year-your-year Los Angeles, CA, December 18, 2014 -- It’s the nature of motivational author and speaker Shawn Anderson’s work to get people fired up about their lives. With January 1 and new year resolutions around the corner, it’s the time of year when people are seriously thinking about what they’d like to change in their lives. “January 1st carries a mystical power that prompts us to reflect on all the ways we think our life is lousy and how we might be able to make it better,” Anderson says. “And although we have the power to create positive change on any day, I love the extra motivational push that the first day of a new calendar year offers.” Anderson offers three gut-check tips to for people to think about as they consider living the life they love in 2015: 1. Quit living a life you don’t like. “If your life sucks in any area, no one has more power than you to create the changes to make it better,” Anderson shares. “If you truly want better for your life, don’t you think 2015 is the time to get off your butt, and tell yourself ‘enough is enough’? If you don’t do it now, you might not ever.” 2. It’s time to kick Fear’s butt. “If you’re afraid of taking risks, then 2015 will look the exact same as 2014,” Anderson says. “Fear is our arch-enemy whose intention is to take everything great from our lives. If you want better health, more adventure or a better job, you have to put on your Superhero cape and kick Fear’s butt. Quit thinking about how might feel if you try and don’t succeed. Instead, start thinking about how you’ll feel if you have to keep living what you are living now…forever.” 3. Everyday is January 1st. “If you have an awesome goal, expect to have a hundred days during the year where you don’t succeed,” Anderson says. “If you fail once…twice…ten times in pursuing your goal, get over it. Tomorrow is always the first day of the rest of your life, and it holds the opportunity to get on track again. Don’t let your failure discourage you to the point you quit trying. Let your desire for getting what you want be what stokes your fire even more.” In addition to being a successful lifetime entrepreneur and author, Anderson is also the Founder of Extra Mile America and the creator of “Extra Mile Day” ...a day recognizing the capacity we each have to create positive change when we go the extra mile. On November 1, 2014, 527 mayors and cities made the unique declaration and recognized those in their local communities who were going the extra mile in volunteerism and service. “Living a life that you love starts with knowing what that life actually looks like,” Anderson, the author of the motivational book Amicus 101: A Story About the Pursuit of Purpose and Overcoming Life’s Chaos, concludes. “The quality, value, and adventure of each of our lives will always be determined by our own vision and a willingness to take action on that vision.” Contact: Shawn Anderson Los Angeles, CA (310) 402-4826shawn@shawnanderson.com 3D takes off at The Mind Lab with XYZ Printing partnership 2014-12-18T00:02:16Z 3d-takes-off-at-the-mind-lab-with-xyz-printing-partnership With the surging interest in science, technology and makerspaces,The Mind Lab is paving the way in which technology is applied in education, giving teachers and students the ability to be more creative while broadening their horizons. That’s according to The Mind Lab’s Education Director Chris Clay, who says the organisation has recently put four XYZ da Vinci 1.0 3D printersinto its Auckland facility. The Mind Lab by Unitec is a collaboration between Unitec Institute of Technology and The Mind Lab. It draws on the education expertise of both organisations to provide teachers and their students with the opportunity to learn how to integrate technology, enhance digital capability and activate new teaching practices in the classroom. Clay explains the purpose of The Mind Lab: “We help schools create lessons which are personalised and apply technology in a way that is often not usual in schools and we offer a post graduate qualification for teachers in digital and collaborative learning; we also offer after school and holiday programmes for children which helps broaden their horizons using technology. We want to raise the quality of how technology is used in education, with a particular focus on doing things which simply aren’t possible without technology.” An ideal componentAlong with robotics, coding, film-making, animation and augmented reality, 3D printing is an essential component of The Mind Lab’s programmes. “For example, we’re using the XYZ da Vinci 3D printeras a component of exploring 3-dimensional space and the relationship between X, Y and Z axes. Adding an element of 3D design completely changes the learning experience, moving it away from a purely academic exercise to a practical one. That fits very well with the difference between ‘pure’ learning and ‘applied’ learning; we want to help teachers and pupils to apply knowledge to identify and then solve problems,” he says. The XYZ da Vinci 3D printers, supplied and supported by Auckland headquartered Comworth Technologies, have quickly become a centrepiece for The Mind Lab, continues Clay. “We have a philosophy of doing things which can easily be replicated in the school or the home – that means tools which are accessible and affordable.Included in that is reliability and ease of use, so we also seek solutions which are good quality.” When Comworth suggested the XYZ da Vinci, the fit was ideal. “We work these machines hard, so it provides a very good test bed for Comworth to prove just how robust they are,” Clay says, “And at a retail price of under $1000, backed by local support, they really are accessible to most households or schools, thus fitting perfectly into our philosophy.” Equally important is the ongoing cost of printing and the filament is just as affordable; with 240m filament cartridges priced at around $50, most objects produced by the XYZ da Vinci cost just $2 to $3. Potential for change3D printing is a technology which has the potential to lead enormous change. “By giving students and teachers the ability to create their own object is powerful on so many levels; it can literally change how we innovate. It is a tool to create physical things in much the same way as developing apps is a tool to create virtual ones. Drawing 3D printing into the educational experience broadens horizons; it is used in many fields including prosthetics, the production of large scale items like houses, soon we could have 3D organs printed. These machines open the mind to wonder and ponder what is possible.” The sheer affordability of the XYZ is a major advantage, continues Clay. “Where in the past, students would design an item and it would come back later after being printed overnight [and out of sight], we now have so many more machines because of the low cost, which means the objects are created right in front of the students. Each individual has more contact with the printing process and a far greater opportunity to rapidly create prototypes,” he explains; not only that, but watching a 3D printer in action is itself fascinating. There is a focus on collaborative work, too – Clay says a group of students were tasked with producing plastic construction blocks, “which are no good unless they have specifications which allow them to fit together. That meant three students working together to make sure there was consensus on the size of the blocks, and the way they could be designed in order to ensure they connect.” Feedback to date is overwhelmingly positive – and Clay says the most frequent question is ‘how much does that cost’. “Everyone is blown away with the affordability of the XYZ da Vinci – if we ask them to guess the price, we get anywhere from $2000 to $6000. When we tell them it is under $1000, most can’t believe it. Someone summed it up best when they said, ‘At that price, I can’t afford not to have it – it is less than an iPad.’” iOS and Android OS Targeted by Man-in-the-Middle Attacks 2014-12-17T22:14:48Z ios-and-android-os-targeted-by-man-in-the-middle-attacks Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: AKAM), the leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimising and securing online content and business applications, today released, through the company's Prolexic Security & Research Team (PLXsert), a new cybersecurity threat advisory. The advisory alerts enterprises, governments and individuals to the Xsser mobile remote access Trojan (mRAT), which targets iOS and Android devices. The Xsser mRAT is spread through man-in-the-middle and phishing attacks and may involve cellphone tower eavesdropping for location-specific attacks. The advisory is available for download from "Sophisticated malicious actors are targeting unsuspecting mobile device users," said Stuart Scholly, senior vice president and general manager, Security Business Unit, Akamai. "Attackers are impersonating or bypassing Google and Apple app stores and using social engineering to trick users into downloading unverified apps that install malicious applications such as the Xsser remote access Trojan onto a user's mobile device. For example, attackers offered a counterfeit Flappy Birds app download to deliver the malicious software."Jailbroken iOS devices at risk  Jailbreaking is the process of removing limitations and security checks in the iOS operating system in order to allow users to install applications from other application stores. In China, for example, 14 per cent of the 60 million iOS devices are estimated to have been jailbroken, often to support the use of third-party Chinese character keyboard apps. Jailbroken phones are at greater risk for malware.Mobile remote access Trojan: the Xsser mRAT  Formerly, Xsser mRAT targeted only Android devices, but a new variant infects jailbroken iOS devices. The app is installed via a rogue repository on Cydia, the most popular third-party application store for jailbroken iPhones. Once the malicious bundle has been installed and executed, it gains persistence – preventing the user from deleting it. The mRAT then makes server-side checks and proceeds to steal data from the user's device and executes remote commands as directed by its command-and-control (C2) server. "Infected phones with the remote access software installed could be used for a wide variety of malicious purposes including surveillance, the stealing of login credentials, launching distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, and more," added Scholly. "With more than a billion smartphone users worldwide, this kind of malware creates significant risks to privacy and a risk of rampant illegal activity."The best protection is to prevent infection  It is difficult to detect whether a phone is under attack from malware such as Xsser mRAT, so a focus on prevention is necessary. Virtual private networks (VPN), two-factor authentication, peer-to-peer proximity networking and commercial phone security applications can provide some protection. Avoiding the use of free Wi-Fi hotspots and automatic connections, ignoring unexpected communications, not jailbreaking phones and not using apps from untrusted sources are some of the self-protection approaches discussed in the advisory.Get the Man-in-the-Middle Attacks Target iOS and Android Threat Advisory to learn more  In the advisory, PLXsert shares its analysis and details, including: Open source intelligence about attacks against mobile devices How attackers access Android devices How attackers access iOS devices Man-in-the-middle GSM and CDMA vulnerabilities Why jailbroken phones are at high risk How Xsser mRAT ends up on mobile phones The malicious use of the Cydia repository Infection prevention tips A complimentary copy of the threat advisory is available for download at  About Akamai Akamai® is the leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimising and securing online content and business applications. At the core of the Company's solutions is the Akamai Intelligent Platform™, providing extensive reach, coupled with unmatched reliability, security, visibility and expertise. Akamai removes the complexities of connecting the increasingly mobile world, supporting 24/7 consumer demand, and enabling enterprises to securely leverage the cloud. To learn more about how Akamai is accelerating the pace of innovation in a hyperconnected world, please visit or, and follow @Akamai on Twitter. Bold, buxom, bawdy and brilliant - Bette (aka Catherine Alcorn) is back in Brisbane February 2015 2014-12-17T05:21:18Z bold-buxom-bawdy-and-brilliant-bette-aka-catherine-alcorn-is-back-in-brisbane-february-2015 The Divine Miss Bette cabaret starring Sydney stage sensation, Catherine Alcorn returns to Brisbane for one night only at 7.15pm, Friday 13 February, 2015 at the Brisbane Powerhouse Theatre. The Divine Miss Bette forms part of the 11 day MELT Festival of music, cabaret, comedy, circus, visual arts and community panels. Tickets are on sale now. Trained by Steve Ostrow, the man who discovered Bette Midler and who owned New York City’s famous Continental Baths disco and bathhouse, Alcorn’s critically acclaimed show is a high energy, feel-good, roller-coaster ride celebrating the “best bits of Bette”. Audiences will think it’s the ‘real’ Bette up on stage! In The Divine Miss Bette, Alcorn takes audiences back to 1973 in the Palace Theatre New York. Accompanied by a live, four piece band and two back-up singers, Alcorn’s critically acclaimed production is a slice of Bette’s life communicated via Alcorn’s acerbic wit, scandalous one-liners and brilliant voice. Bette classics such as “Stay With Me Baby”, “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”, “In The Mood", “You’re Moving Out Today” and “Am I Blue” feature in the show. A polished and professional performer with over 10 years’ experience Alcorn has appeared and headlined at some of Australia’s leading festivals including Noosa Long Weekend Festival, Adelaide Cabaret Festival, The Idolize Spiegeltent Perth Fringe Festival, Ballarat Cabaret Festival and New Zealand’s Right Royal Cabaret Festival. Catherine is also the Creative Director of Sydney music and event venue, Slide Lounge. “Bette Midler is one of my favourite characters to play and truth be told, she’s a bit of an alter-ego. “To be trained by the man who discovered Bette and then pay tribute to her life on stage is absolutely fantastic fun and a real privilege. “The show is always a sell-out because people just love Bette. The audience always ends up singing and laughing out loud. “I can’t wait to get to Brisbane again and be a part of the MELT Festival. It’s a fantastic program.” TO BUY TICKETS: Date: Friday 13th February 2015Time: 7.15pm (70 minute show)Ticket prices: Tickets start from $34 eachBookings: Box Office: (07) 3358 8600 or boxoffice@brisbanepowerhouse.orgVenue: Brisbane Powerhouse, 119 Lamington Street, New Farm, Queensland, Australia 4005 WHAT THE CRITICS ARE SAYING: “See this diva before she’s on Broadway” – THEATRE ALIVE MELBOURNE“This show is like a snort of something expensive and naughty” – STAGE NOISE SYDNEY“Between the tall tales, double entendre, and tongue-in-cheek vulgarity, the heartache behind the humour, most evident in Alcorn's rendition of Am I Blue, elevates her titillating tribute to a tender triumph.” – THE WEST AUSTRALIAN“A helluva lot of butt-wiggling, boob squeezing and classic Midler filth…you won’t be disappointed by Alcorn’s charisma, energy and sharp comedic timing on stage.” – OUT IN PERTH“Remarkable” – STAGE NOISE“Bloody talented” – CRIKEY“Quite the package” – DEBORAH JONES“Magnificent. A young talent whose star is very much on the ascent.” – THE AUSTRALIAN WOMEN’S WEEKLY -ENDS- For interviews, high resolution images or more information about The Divine Miss Bette contact: Catherine Alcorn on 0412 189 058 or For more information about Catherine Alcorn visit: For a sneak peek of The Divine Miss Bette visit:!the-divine-miss-bette/c1grd To learn more about the MELT Festival visit: The Divine Miss Bette is proudly presented by Neil Gooding Productions and Catherine Alcorn European Design collection now available in Australia 2014-12-15T23:41:25Z european-design-house-now-available-in-australia The Independent Designers Emporium is making its mark in the Australian interior decorating market with the addition of designers Fundamental Berlin. Since 2011,  Fundamental Designs' Steve Molloy and Gunnar Rönsch have won many accolades for their craftsmanship and inspired designs which are largely based on geometric patterns. Lauded in many popular interior magazines and have been taken up by the likes of Hay, Vitra and Monoqi. "Fundamental has a strong fresh range unlike anything we have seen here in Australia recently" says Maxine Parfitt curator of the Independent Designers Emporium. "shipping costs are also very reasonable which means shopping in Europe has become much less of a barrier. We are excited to be able to bring these contemporary furniture, homewares and heirloom pieces to the Australian marketplace. It's exactly what we are about at IDE - buying handmade, sustainable quality pieces with inspired designs and keeping them. Furniture and homewares should be more like pieces of original art that you would never part with. We think it's a concept thats growing in momentum within Australia".  XYZ da Vinci 3D Printers help MOTAT look to the future 2014-12-15T22:22:16Z xyz-da-vinci-3d-printers-help-motat-look-to-the-future The introduction of a 3D printer just in time for the third term school holidays has proven a winner for Auckland’s Museum of Transport and Technology. Supplied and supported by OfficeMax, the new XYZ Da Vinci 1.0 printer has been integrated into the Museum’s existing printing display and provides visitors with insight into the rapidly developing world of 3D printing, and an opportunity to see them in action. The Museum of Technology and Transport (MOTAT) is the largest of its kind in New Zealand. It offers a fun and exciting learning experience for visitors of all ages. With its core vision to ‘use New Zealand’s heritage, kiwi ingenuity, transport, technology and associated stories in a creative and interactive way to educate and inspire the innovators of tomorrow’, the 3D printer is a welcome addition, confirms Andrew McCartney, Experience Concept Developer at MOTAT. “The real value in 3D printers is that they are an important new technology which is in its early stages of awareness. That makes it very exciting to show to people; it is a technology that has the potential to revolutionise our business and personal lives,” he says. With extensive displays of transport and technology over its 40 acres of ground, McCartney says the XYZ Da Vinci has been a welcome addition to the print display section; “This demonstrates early machines, all the way from hand powered letter printers to some of the later mechanical printing presses,” he notes. With a laugh, McCartney agrees that the addition of the 3D printer is something akin to the ‘Evolution of Man’ chart. “3D is a natural and quite remarkable progression of printing technology – and as a museum of technology, we couldn’t wait to get one on display,” he adds. Straight into action Among the ground-breaking features of the XYZ Da Vinci are its low cost and ease of use. With the machine delivered just before the 3rd term school holidays, it took very little time to get it set up and operational in time for the rush of young visitors, confirms McCartney. “We started with a 3D printing experience to demonstrate the machine to the public. Subsequently, for the school children, we’ve embarked on a demonstration of how the additive manufacturing principle works. The kids get modelling clay and roll out sausages to make coil pots – that’s a good way of explaining the concept and the technique which is applied, obviously in a far more refined way, as the XYZ prints models.” Perhaps the highlight to date was the incorporation of the 3D printer into MOTAT’s ‘Invention Nation’ holiday exhibit. Aimed at stimulating interest in New Zealand inventors, and inventors in general, McCartney says Invention Nation aimed to open children’s minds to the possibilities of ingenuity. “The 3D printer was an important part of that; invention isn’t just something that happens in a lab, but everyday people invent things all the time. With technology like the 3D printer now readily available to experiment and test different things, inventors today have amazing tools to help turn vision into reality.” Instant fascination Museums are typically places where imaginations run wild and wonder is found around every corner. That made the XYZ Da Vinci an ideal addition to the exhibitions, agrees McCartney. “People are fascinated by it. Children will sit for half an hour watching it going around and around…and to be honest, it’s drawn very much the same reaction from our staff members. There’s always a lot of interest when we take the finished models out. It’s even quite a therapeutic thing to watch the printer at work,” he says. With the machine already a big hit in the two months it’s been at MOTAT, McCartney says there are plenty of plans for the future. “We’ve got a number of ideas in the pipeline, particularly in terms of ways to get people to interact more directly with 3D printing. Certainly, it is something that we will be using on an ongoing basis, demonstrating and exploring the cool things that can be done with 3D printing.” But perhaps the most amazing thing about the XYZ Da Vinci remains its price, he adds. “This is one of the most common questions we get asked – and people are consistently astounded that they can get a machine like this for their own homes [for under $1000],” McCartney concludes. Lavazza release their 2015 Calendar - The Earth Defenders 2014-12-14T23:16:40Z lavazza-release-their-2015-calendar-the-earth-defenders The 2015 Lavazza Calendar is a photographic exploration of men and women in Africa actively protecting the world around them and the food traditions of their cultures. Released both in print and in a multimedia online format, The Earth Defenders (the 2015 title) is a beautiful journey highlighting Lavazza’s focus on the Slow Food project and the people making it possible. The 2015 Calendar features 12 photographs by Steve McCurry under the creative direction of Armando Testa. The images showcase the different cultures, landscapes and produce found throughout Africa and the people working tirelessly to ensure their continuation. “Steve McCurry,” comments Michele Mariani, Executive Creative Director at Armando Testa, “is the ideal person to interpret the spirit of the 2015 Lavazza Calendar. A Calendar with a very important topic, that tells a story of people and one special place, Africa” The Lavazza calendar has become a celebrated annual tradition since its inaugural addition in 1993 with photographs by Helmut Newton. This year is a particularly important release as it is available in a limited edition where every calendar sold contributes directly to the “10,000 food gardens in Africa” project. The goal is to build 10,000 gardens in schools and villages in Africa. More information on the Calendar including videos and photos can be found: Lavazza Blue and Espresso Point coffee is proudly distributed in Australia by The Blue Pod Coffee Company who supply free on loan coffee machines to Australia workplaces, – 1800 800 255 DISCO-TASTIC - DISCO DOME: THE LOST DISCOTHEQUES OF PARRAMATTA 2014-12-11T02:30:53Z disco-tastic Take a trip through the streets, culture and history of the lost discotheques of Parramatta with Disco Dome - an immersive, after dark walking tour and dance event that revisits/reworks Parramatta nightlife (1978-1995).   Presented by Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE) in association with Sydney Festival, Disco Dome bumps its bootie and struts its stuff with pumping music, contemporary art, live performance, architectural tours and talks, community reminiscence, food, cocktails and a an old skool Disco Inferno.  You will Dance, Dance, Dance!     Strap on your heels. Zip up your flares: for three consecutive Friday and Saturday nights during the 2015 Sydney Festival (January 9, 10, 16, 17, 23 and 24) Parramatta will be Funky Town, with Disco Dome grooving from the twilight hour (8pm) to the midnight hour (12am).   Via funk, fun and the streets of Parramatta (and its of old discos/cinemas) Disco Dome will casts its glitter eye on the times and tensions when Australia (and Parramatta) was moving from Anglo monoculture (read Pub Rock), to multi-cultural haven (read Disco, R&B, Hip Hop).  Nowhere was the clash of ‘flannelette’ and ‘satin’, ‘head bang’ and ‘boogie’ more evident than at Parramatta’s legendary ‘War and Peace Discotheque’ (1978-1986) where most nights it delivered on its name. Disco Dome revisits blood on the dance floor.      Mighty Real, Disco Dome also brings back to life the infamous Lucky Lil’s Nightclub as the venue for a range of specially commissioned film, digital, recorded/audio and performance artworks from some of Australia’s leading contemporary artists: Liam Benson, Khaled Sabsabi, Justene Williams, David Capra, Heath Franco, Fadia Abboud, Jerome Pearce and Zehrish Naera.   Indeed, Parramatta based Liam Benson channels Jane Fonda and Richard Simmons when he takes over the Fitness First Health Club (the old art deco Astra Cinema site) with a participatory performance (in the cardio pump room) that lets us all Get Physical.   Best of all, each night will be capped off by legendary DJ Danny K coming out of retirement to Relight The Fire, and spin a live old skool disco. It will be Boogie Wonderland (with supper thrown in).   “We’re absolutely stoked to present Disco Dome in Parramatta”, said project curator John Kirkman. “It takes us back to a heady time of great music, incredible fashion, dancing, sex, drugs and as little Rock and Roll as possible.”   Feel the Night Fever? Do Ya Wanna Funk? The only answer is Disco Dome. Book NOW.  WHAT:                                   Disco Dome: The Lost Discotheques of ParramattaWHEN:                                   9 & 10 January at 8pm                                                 16 & 17 January at 8pm                                                 23 & 24 January at 8pmWHERE:                                  Starts at the Cnr of Darcy Street and Church Street MallDURATION:                           4 – 4.5 hoursPRICE:                                    $89 + bf includes cocktails/drinks and supper. 18yrs+BOOKING:                             Sydney Festival 1300 856 876                                                                                        For more information, visit:| 02 9897 5744  EDITOR’S NOTES  ARTIST BIOS  JEROME PEARCE is an audio-visual artist, designer and cultural producer. He has been working in the creative cultural industry for over 10 years creating work with communities and collaborating with local and international artists on interactive and experimental installations, video and design. He works across the arts, community, education, disability and business sectors facilitating small and large-scale projects that cater to diverse audiences, needs and levels of interactivity. He is the founder and director of Just Pixels, a digital media enterprise that provides a range of creative and digital services.  FADIA ABBOUD is a filmmaker, cultural producer and has been the Co-Director of the Arab Film Festival Australia since 2007. 
Most recently written and directed “I Luv U But…” a web-based series nominated at the Beirut Social Media Awards in the most Engaging Youtube Channel category (Series 1), and funded by Screen Australia (Series 2). Some of her previous work includes “I Remember 1948”, a documentary that was screened on SBS in 2008 and two short dramas, one of them “Big Trouble, Little Fish” screened at Flickerfest. She has worked for several community organizations, art and educational institutions on a variety of projects producing digital stories with communities and creating video art for theatre and other live performance based productions. Fadia has also worked as a facilitator and creative producer on various projects with Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE) for over 12 years.  JUSTENE WILLIAMS was born in Sydney and completed a Bachelor of Visual Arts at the University of Western Sydney in 1991. Further art education was undertaken at Sydney College of the Arts (Postgraduate Diploma in 1992 and a Master of Visual Arts in 2006). Williams’ early work revolved around photography and utilised the ad hoc nature of disposable cameras and one-hour printing labs. The locations for these early photographic projects were sites of public recreation: shopping centres, car shows and strip clubs; and the resultant imagery channeled the energy of popular culture while often being luxuriously abstract. Often, Williams images were the rescued “out-takes” from rolls of film; the out of focus, blurred “mistakes” that mysteriously hinted at figuration, but eluded resolution. In 2005 Williams’ interest in photography was subsumed into the medium of video. Coupled with her interest in choreography and performance (Williams danced as a child), she began to use video as a performative medium, creating elaborate sets and costumes from “waste” materials in which absurd, repetitive actions were executed. These delirious choreographies in fabulist settings have the aura of voodoo, with the artist channelling various periods from art history in an effort to reconstruct the essence of forgotten images. Through the physical collaging of materials to construct her complex sets and costumes, and the digital collaging and editing of video, Williams invokes the ghosts of artists past. In _Bighead Garbageface Guards Ghost Derr Sonata _at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney in 2009, Willliams conjures the spirits of Dada artists Kurt Schwitters, Sophie Tauber Arp and Man Ray. In Berlin Burghers Microwave at Penrith Regional Gallery in 2010, Williams summoned Auguste Rodin’s The Burghers of Calais (1889) and Claude Monet’s Waterlilies, and in the MCA’s Crutch Dance in 2011, a Futurist figure vainly does battle with a treadmill, invoking Umberto Boccioni’s famous sculpture Continuity of Unique Form in Space (1913). Justene Wiiliams’ embracing of both high and low art, history and salvage, painting and video, results in a hypnotic new form of recycling – a curiously ‘carbon neutral’ method of image production.KHALED SABSABI specialises in multimedia and site-specific installations, often involving working across borders, culture and disciplines to make artwork that challenge extreme principles and actions. Sabsabi has worked with communities, in particular communities in Western Sydney, to create and develop arts programs and projects that explore people and places from a broad social, political and ideological spectrums. Sabsabi has exhibited in more than forty-five solo and group exhibitions in Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Lebanon, New Zealand, Poland and Spain. He is a recipient of the Blake Art Prize, Helen Lempriere Travelling Art Scholarship and an Australia Council for the Arts Community Cultural Development Fellowship.LIAM BENSON is a performance artist who documents his work through photography, video and new media. Benson’s work deconstructs the social perceptions of gender, race, culture, sexuality and identity by cross- referencing art, popular culture and media language. He mines the visual language and communication formats of advertising and popular media to document his performances as both still photographs and video for a form of contemporary myth making. Liam Benson has been exhibiting and performing since 2002. Benson also regularly works in collaboration with Naomi Oliver as the performance based duo, The Motel Sisters. His works are held in significant public and private collections and he was awarded the Hazelhurst Art on Paper Awardjudged by Ben Quilty, and the Contemporary Award category of the Fishers Ghost Art Award judged by MCA curator Glenn Barkley In 2013, Benson was the winner of the prestigious Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award. He also exhibited and performed in a group exhibition in New York City, and at the Cutlog New York Art Fair. In 2014, Benson was the Arts Category Winner of The Champions of the West Initiative, and was awarded a grant for his project ‘I Adorn Myself’ – a community art project collaborating with female participants investigating the significance of their individual cultural legacy and identity. Benson was also invited to perform at the Museum of Contemporary Art, to celebrate the institution’s 2 millionth visitor.DAVID CAPRA work examines 'intercession; practices claimed to solicit intervention in initiating spiritual and literal healing'. Capra's performance work is articulated through such gestures as the laying on of hands, flag waving, dance and glossolalia (speaking-in-tongues). Capra's use of objects in his work 'function as props, yielding towards ornamentation and layered with imagery streaming from prophetic visionary encounters'. He holds a  Bachelor of Fine Art (Honours), College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales.HEATH FRANCO has been a fixture of the independent Sydney art scene since completing his degree at the College of Fine Arts in 2005. But it was his breakout video work Your Door in 2010 that hit audiences like a blast of hot air after a day browsing in a generic, air-conditioned shopping mall that put him on the radar of the mainstream contemporary art world. It was a brutal psychological portrait of suburban life which demonstrated the artist’s laser-like ability to understand the devil in the detail of human behaviour, as well as his entirely unique way of expressing it through performance personas that are simultaneously bizarre yet oddly familiar. The characters that populate Franco’s videos are performed with a Brando-like bravura, a dadaist sense of the absurd and the relentlessness of comedic genius Andy Kaufmann. His rise to mainstream success had been greatly assisted by the mentoring he has received from Michael Dagostino, the former director of Parramatta Artists Studio where Franco was artist- in-residence from 2008 to 2011. In 2012 things took off for Franco in a big way. He was signed by a commercial gallery, Galerie Pompom, where his first solo show Dream Home was both a critical and commercial success; he was included in the Tokyo Art Fair where Your Door was chosen for exhibition in the vernissage, a first for an Australian artist; he won the prestigious Churchie National Emerging Art Prize; and his work was collected by major public institutions.DJ DANNY K is a well-known DJ from back in the day. He had thousands dancing to his music weekly in a range of locations across Parramatta from the late 70s to mid 90s. Starting off at Jays which turned into Memories then Images which turned into Moonlighting then finally at Traders for 10 years... the landmark club of Parramatta from 1986 - 1999, where Danny went the crowds moved with him.  Watch Danny K play live once more with his most cherished vinyls... you can even make a request at the upcoming world premiere event, Disco Dome. Danny K was a mobile DJ, discoing house parties from Granville to Guildford until his first nightclub DJ gig at Jays in Parramatta in 1983.  Jay's turned into Memories and the club was pumping funk and disco tunes every night of the week until Danny was poached to the other side of Parramatta at the new club Images.  Where Danny went the crowd moved with him and he played there to a crowd of 1000 on Saturday night until he moved once again to the famous Traders at the Park Royal in Parramatta.  For 10 years Danny DJ'd there and a real family of disco goers were loyal to the venue and called it home week after week.  The beat goes on in Parramatta at Sydney Festival where Danny K will bring out his vinyl once more and play a special old skool set.. meet him, dance, request a song.ZEHRISH NAERA is a musician, DJ and producer from Western Sydney. He holds a Bachelor of Audio Engineering (JMC Academy). Zehrish works in clubs and with community based organisations (e.g. Blacktown Youth Services) as a music facilitator engaging young people on creative projects. He is currently employed by the Noffs Foundation at Street University Mt Druitt. Zehrish has produced for many prominent artists in Australia, New Zealand and the US, including: Miracle (Sony); True Vibenation (Big Village); L-Fresh; Soul Benefits; Figgkidd/Lee Monro (Sony); Swiss (Dawn Raid); Zeek Spits; Lil Nate Dogg and more. He also produces sound for television commercials, short films, video art, visual art installations, music clips, short films and sound-based culturally engaged tours that interact with site-specific works.  PROJECT TEAMJOHN KIRKMAN: CURATOR John Kirkman was Chief Executive Officer Penrith Performing & Visual Arts (2005-2012), previous to this he was Director of the Penrith Regional Gallery & The Lewers Bequest (2001-2005). Previously he was Curator/Manager of djamu Gallery Australian Museum at Customs House (1998-2001), and was inaugural Director, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre (1992-98). John was also Project Co-ordinator, Flying Fruit Fly Circus, Albury/Wodonga (1987-92). John Kirkman has worked extensively as curator and project manager for a range of exhibitions, performance programs and major public art commissions and consultancies. Clients include Sydney International Airport (SACL), Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority, Hawkesbury City Council and Liverpool City Council. John has also co-ordinated and curated a range of international cultural exchange programs with particular focus on Japan and India. He was a member of the NSW Premier’s Arts Advisory Council (2003-2006), and currently a member of the Arts NSW funding panel. John Kirkman has a Masters of Arts Administration (College of Fine Art, University of NSW) and a Diploma of Teaching (Wollongong University).JONATHAN WILSON: PRODUCER Jonathan Wilson is a musician, artist and cultural producer. He works with artists and communities to create work that explores existing realities and engages a broader audience using multimedia platforms (including performance, digital art, literature and music). Jonathan produced an experimental arts and youth engagement project ‘Mondo Project’ for Penrith Performing & Visual Arts Centre (2011-2013). This project successfully activated a disputed public space by engaging disengaged and marginalised young people through youth pop culture, music and image. Jonathan also owned and ran ‘Speak n Spell’, one of Australia’s largest independent record labels and artist management companies (2004-2010). He has an honors degree in Fine Arts from the University of Western Sydney.MOUNA ZAYLAH: EXECUTIVE PRODUCER Mouna Zaylah is a cultural producer and arts manager and has been the Co-Director of the Arab Film Festival since 2007. She has worked at Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE) for over 16 years producing cultural events, performance and screen-based projects with artists, communities, business and organisations. Mouna specializes in developing cultural activities that link artists with audiences, introducing emerging talents to new media tools and translating the needs of corporate, community and government organizations into dynamic cultural projects. She has over 22 years experience in the community arts and cultural development sector and has worked for Urban Theatre Projects as administrator and project officer (1992-1997) and Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre in administration, curatorial and project coordinator roles (1997-1999) and a range of other community and youth based organizations as a freelance project coordinator and consultant. CUSTOM WEDDING SIGNAGE 2014-12-10T04:25:49Z custom-wedding-signage It’s always nice to see our creations used in such a lovely setting. The laser cut out quote behind the bride and groom was something created for their special day. All the best to the newly wed couple!   THE FARM BYRON BAY – TIMBER SIGNAGE 2014-12-10T04:22:39Z the-farm-byron-bay-timber-signage Here’s a simple but effective sign we laser etched on some marine ply for The Farm Byron Bay.  It’s an organic look for an organic produce company. BOND UNIVERSITY – PERPETUAL RUGBY TROPHY 2014-12-10T04:21:42Z bond-university-perpetual-rugby-trophy Here’s a set of trophies we enjoyed making here at Potato Press. The large trophy is a perpetual award for the ‘James Slipper Trophy’ at Bond University. The small one is for the recipient to take home.