Garden of children
From vampires and tattooed sailors to a pilow puf of kindergarten clouds and rainbows. You are very welcome at the Naraben headquarters of Ozzie Wright… SIX YEARS AGO, Ozzie Wright dived into the great Sydney property boom. For a scrape under a mil, he bought the deed to a magnificent, architect-designed two storey house 200 […]
From vampires and tattooed sailors to a pilow puf of kindergarten clouds and rainbows. You are very welcome at the Naraben headquarters of Ozzie Wright…
SIX YEARS AGO, Ozzie Wright dived into the great Sydney property boom. For a scrape under a mil, he bought the deed to a magnificent, architect-designed two storey house 200 metres from North Narrabeen. Until early this year, it was the Goonies clubhouse, housing all members of The Goons of Doom including Oz’s then girlfriend Dashenka Prochazka.
But times change. Moods shift. And the embers of love dwindle to nothingness.
Just turned 31, Oz has streamlined his living quarters. Now it’s just him and his new(ish) girl Miley. His domesticated mindset has manifested itself in simple things such as the removal of the dolls with daggers through their torsos and with their tu-tuts pulled over their heads revealing blank pubis mons and replaced by simple collage portraits of Miley and metres of cloud murals.
“Someone told me the other day that it looks like a kindergarten,” says Oz.
A kindergarten? Somewhere safe where children can play without fear of molestation? Where laughter rings from dusk til dawn? Where scattered toys form a mosaic of gentle play?
Sounds like heaven…
STAB: Beautiful house, great choice, the best we’ve photographed, well played etc. Can you tell me, when did you feel the need to buy your own home?
OZ: When I started earning a bit of money. I was living at mum’s so I thought I’d better get my act together. It seemed like the obvious thing to do.
× How dId you find the house?
My mum found it. I was away and she had a look. I drove past it and I rang up the guy and said, “I want to buy it, can I go and check it out?” and he said, “You can’t check it out, there’s people in there” and I said, “Oh well, I’ll take it anyway.”
× That ’s not a great position to begin the bargaining process. Did you get the agent to move on the price?
Not really. I tried to buy another one up at Narrabeen before and just as I was about to get it, some rich people came in with heaps more, a couple of hundred thousand extra, and I had to let that one go. It was up near the fire station. On the beachside, one back from the beach. It was sick. But this one’s close enough.
× It’s clearly an architect-designed abode. Is my hunch correct?
Yep. A woman who was an architect had lived in it and done it all up but then she had to get a divorce. So she had to sell it.
× Maybe the building process sabotaged their relationship.
Maybe. Apparently her boyfriend was a bit crazy.
× I love the light and its openness…
Yeah, it’s nice, it’s got this nice top room I’m hanging in now.
× Can you describe the feeling when you signed the deed of ownership?
I was away for the first two months on the road. I knew it was mine, but I still hadn’t been inside. When I got back, I walked inside, dropped my stuff and all my friends moved in.
× So the day you moved in was the day you first saw the interiors?
I’d never been in the house before. I’d owned it for two months without even setting foot in it.
× Describe the various phases of the house.
It started off as the crazy fun party house with heaps of
people living here and then we put the ramp in the backyard and…I dunno. Lots of phases. The newest phase is… now! Living in a state of domestic bliss with my girlfriend. We, like, cook and clean and be… mellow. It’s great. It’s the house’s most unpartiable phase. Although, we did have a party the other week. It was a cowboy dress-up for Justin Crawford’s kid and there was a fire in the backyard. Someone tried to burn the ramp down.
× The current phase was the result of much thought and consultation with Nudes, I believe.
Yeah, but in the end we just got floorboards put in and we painted the walls white.
× I remember the search for an appropriate couch stole plenty of your time.
Well, it was funny looking with couches with Nudes. They were all eight or 10-grand and the one I liked was 30-grand. But then I went to Vinnie’s and got one I liked for a hundred bucks. All my furniture has come from Vinnie’s. A hundred bucks is my most expensive piece.
× I like how you call a hundred dollar couch a “piece”. Now you’re getting into the spirit of interior design.
(Laughter) It’s all from Vinnie’s.
× Talk me through the cloud murals on the front of the crib.
Me and Miley painted a rainbow over the front door to brighten it up when you come in and I painted the shed yellow, the jam room, the room of doom. I painted a couple of little sharks on the side of the house. The other day someone said it looks like a kindergarten.
× You’ve gone from vampires and naked dolls stabbed through the heart to clouds and rainbows. Is this a reflection of your mindset?
× Amid the girls and clouds is a skull with two serpents emerging from the eye sockets. Very gothic.
That’s the entrance to the Room of Doom, the Goon Room.
× Do you jam much or do you prefer to allow the magic to happen only on stage?
We don’t jam very much. Maybe we will one day. I’ve got the room set up for it.
× The paintings, as expected, are superb. Who is the girl playing guitar?
That’s Miley. It’s a collage, made up of cut-out pieces of paper.
× And is that Miley, the painting of the girl with the brown hair?
× And, nearby, is that an all-red painting?
Have you embraced the pretentious school of abstract minimalism?
That’s a white profile face of my sister that her husband did of her on a red background. Her husband’s Jon Zawada! That’s one of his paintings!
× Who is Cabman?
It’s a painting by my friend Eli, Eli Faen. Ryan Cowell bought it off him once and it ended up in Blakey’s shed and so I rescued it enough to put it on the outside of my house. I love that painting but it’s getting pretty exposed to the weather.
× Where does the bale of hay come from?
We’ve got a few bales of hay leftover from the cowboy party. One sprouted a whole crop of new green grass.
× Tell me about your current fixation with Pandas. Before the bears, it was vampires, sailors and shipwrecks. From whence is your source?
I just got a book in Vinnie’s called Giant Pandas and Blakey and the boys wanted us to do a cover for that album (on last issue’s Stab) and I just cut up my panda book and made it out of that. A lot of my things come from Vinnies. Shipwrecks and Shark Attacks, my latest book, I’ve got a heap of inspiration out of that. I got a new song out of it the othe day, about a shark attack.
× What’s it called?
It’s called The Story of Jurien Bay. It’s a good story about this old shark attack on these two divers. They’re just books at Vinnie’s, that’s where the inspiration comes from.
× I’m interested in the shark attack. What happened?
There was a spear fishing competition on back in the ’60s, it’s a true story, and these two guys just went diving and one of em got eaten by a Great White, chopped in half in front of his buddy.
× What are some of the words in the song?
Can you remember any of em?
Oh, I can remember all of em. It’s pretty long.
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