Esther Beaton


Suzanne Holman, go in peace

The artist, Suzanne Holman, at work on one of her first major artworks, the mural at the children’s pool at Bondi Beach. I just had to write something to acknowledge this lovely, talented and community-spirited artist. She never stopped created murals and art installations along the whole eastern coastline.

What a beautiful woman! Had I known at the time of taking her portrait that our lives might intersect again. I heard this morning that she was one of the two people who died in a microlight crash a few days ago. They were flying over Tuggerah Lake on a joy flight. It turns out Suzanne was living in Avoca Beach, just a few kilometres from me. If I’d known, I probably would have looked her up, found out what other projects she was working on, maybe photographed her again.

I ran into Suzanne when I first moved to Bondi Beach myself – must have been around 1986. I was fascinated with the mural she was creating and I proposed a feature  to Good Weekend magazine. I got my good mate, David Hancock, to write the article. It was published with a photo similar to this one across a big double page spread. Too bad I no longer have that tearsheet but at least I still have a photo.

Well done, Suzanne.

What about you? Have you ever had the experience of having photographed someone who later died? How do you feel, knowing you have a precious recording of that person’s life? Does it give you a deeper connection, or make you feel like a keeper of their soul?

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