The University of Newcastle, Australia

Filmmaker to explore Witch of Kings Cross

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Internationally-acclaimed filmmaker, Sonia Bible will visit the University of Newcastle on September 5 to explore the University's archived documents relating to the 'Witch of Kings Cross', Rosaleen Norton.

Rosaleen Norton

The cultural collections, donated to the University by senior lecturer in Ancient History and Classical Languages, Professor Marguerite Johnson, contains documents detailing the life and experiences of Rosaleen Norton, occultist and artist who is also the subject of Bible's yet-to-be-released documentary.

Professor  Johnson said 'The Witch of Kings Cross' was an in-depth look at the revered and notorious Kings Cross personality, with a backdrop of bohemian life in Sydney in the 1950s.

"The University's collection will provide unique insight into Rosaleen's life and her impact on art and culture," Professor  Johnson said.

"Rosaleen Norton was extremely interested in ancient Greek, Roman and Egyptian gods and goddesses, so Sonia and I will be discussing that from an ideological perspective."

Dr Johnson joins a list of international scholars, artists, and musicians who are being interviewed for the yet-to-be completed documentary.

"This will be a ground-breaking documentary, looking at some of Australia's most interesting personalities," Professor  Johnson said.

"Rosaleen Norton's erotic paintings, brazen sex life and occultist beliefs, made her one of the most persecuted artists in history."

Sonia Bible's debut film Recipe for Murder, won a Silver Hugo Award at the prestigious Chicago International Film Festival in 2011 and was the second highest rating Australian documentary on the ABC in the same year.

"It is a privilege to contribute to a documentary directed by someone of the calibre of Sonia Bible," Professor  Johnson said.

"Rosaleen was depicted as an evil witch, now the true story of this incredible woman will be told."

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