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Gwendoline Christie watched Top of the Lake four times before she finally summoned the courage to email the director, Jane Campion, pleading to be cast in the sequel. But first, she ran a draft past a friend: “If you read this and think I sound like an idiot, I won’t send it to Jane and we’ll never speak of it again,” she said.

The fact Christie and her co-stars are filming the show here at Bondi beach is proof that the email was sent, and that Campion liked what she read. The director remembers Christie describing herself as an unusual actress “because I’m very tall”.

At 30, Sydney artist Mitch Cairns segues seamlessly from his cartoons exhibited last year at The Commercial, collected in his book Dip or Skinny Dip, to this year’s exhibition of conceptual figurative and abstract paintings, FINCHES. In these oil on linen works, he confines himself for the most part to a couple of colours, but with subtle gradations of tone.

Walking into Cairns’s exhibition, expecting to see finches, the visitor is instead confronted by a large seagull work, with an orange beak and eye, in flight against a powder-blue sky.

Fifty essays and dispatches on
what it means to be gay today.

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