Ern Malley first visited Heide in the late spring of 1943. He returned 66 years later in July 2009 to read his poems during an exhibition which examined the genesis, reception and repercussions of the hoax through a range of art works and archival material.
The exhibition included a selection of remarkable images by Sidney Nolan, Douglas Robert’s satirical portrayal of Max Harris’ trial, facsimiles of surrealist collages by hoaxer Harold Stewart and works by contemporary artist Garry Shead. Also on show was a 1948 film The Well Wrought Ern, made in Detroit U.S.A. by University of Michigan students intrigued with the tale of deception.
Following his poetry reading, Mr Malley answered questions and graciously agreed to annotate a copy of the exhibition catalogue. It is probably the only extant side-by-side example of his and his sister Lois’ handwriting.
The exhibition catalogue follows.