The Benny Zable Profile

Born in the Wellington hospital New Zealand, at 10am on the 1st of October 1945.

My parents emigrated from New Zealand to Australia in 1948, and settled down in North Carlton, Melbourne Victoria. I pre-schooled at the Lady Gowrie kindergarten, graduating to Lee Street primary and Princess Hill central schools. I was brought up in a Jewish Socialist Yiddish speaking community, which was centred at the Kadimah Jewish Theatre and Library in Lygon Street, North Carlton.
Benny Zable Woodstock New York 1995.

Zany Bubbles at Acosanti Arizona 1979

When I  was fourteen I did an apprenticeship in letterpress printing as a machinist for a friend of my fathers. I joined the Victorian Contemporary Art Society and Jewish Society of the Arts, so I could develop my artistic skills and took up a number of dance courses, performing with the Ben Uri dancers and the Contemporary Dance Theatre Company in Beaumoris Victoria.

After finishing my 5 year apprenticeship in 1968, I journeyed to Israel and worked on a kibbutz by the Lebanese border, witnessing the horrors of war. It was through my journey to Israel that I learnt the futility and tragedy of war and the boundaries thereby created by nationalism. I spent a lot of time there painting and sketching the people and their environment.

I was fortunate enough then to also visit London, [UK] at the height of the 60's era, to witness the counter culture and peace movements. One of these cultural centres was the London Arts Lab, which was a club in Drury Lane were an international array of artists met to exhibit and interact with each other. I travelled on to Paris [France] to witness the beginnings of the students uprising. Back in Melbourne, I exhibited the artwork created on my journey and  came together with like minded friends who had experienced the London Arts Laboratory, to create the Melbourne Arts co-op, a multimedia events network. I ran dance workshops and performed happenings around Melbourne, improvising with filmmakers, poets, musicians etc., fully immersing myself in that process.

It was in 1973 that our dance workshop formed "The Metaphysical Magic Show", which performed the "Time Machine" by H.G.Wells at the Aquarius Festival held in Nimbin NSW. Throughout the festival we ran dance workshops at the Nimbin Town Hall.

I stayed on in Nimbin to continue doing dance workshops and help the 'Tuntable Falls Co-ordination Co-operative' get on its feet. I would go back to Melbourne to keep in touch with family and friends, sketch, paint and hold exhibitions. I created a free form type of character I called ZANY BUBBLES, which I performed at events.

Rainbow Bubbles perform ing at Paddington Bazaar Sydney Australia 1984

The new Sakyamuni healing Buddha shopfront murtal "Birth and Beyond" Nimbin 2001

 In 1977 I repainted the Nimbin facades, a Graeme Dunstan project that were originally painted at the Nimbin Aquarius Festival primarily by Vernon Treweke, Lindsay Burke and Dick Weight.

End of 1978 I finished the mural project and travelled to the USA to research the public art movement and connect with lost relatives. I attended the World Symposium on Humanities that was being held at the Pasadena Centre in Los Angeles. It was an event that linked me with kindred spirits, a time of reflection on the horrors of the Nuclear Power and weapons industry. A serious accident took place at the Three Mile Island Nuclear Reactor that is downwind from New York City, nearly resulting in a meltdown. This issue dominated the symposium.
The Nuclear free roadshow in Western Australia, 1987.

Summer Solstice performance ritual Acosanti, Arizona 1979

 I visited ARCOSANTI, a mini alternative city being created in Arizona and afterwards the Rainbow Gathering, being held in New Mexico. I made it to New York City and volunteered to help out at the "No Nukes" concert and rolling actions throughout the month of September 1979. I was most impressed by the quality and discipline of these actions.

When I came back to Australia in december 1979, I joined with activists to help bring about clarity to issues effecting humanity, justice and the Earth. By bearing witness to the habitats being destroyed, I developed an image at frontline actions to bring about awareness of the dark side of humanity which I called GREEDOZER AND COMPANY.

Greed Dozer freinds of the Earth Melbourne 1999.

Greed Dozer Adelaide Festival of Arts 1987 GREEDOZER AND COMPANY developed out of witnessing the destruction of coastal Rainforest at the Middle Head sandmining protests in NSW, October 1980.

I visualised a dark character with a skull head, GREEDOZER (death the reaper) to portray the ugly side of civilisation while meditating amidst the clear felled trees of the once coastal forest home of many native birds and animals. At the Middle Head protest, I set up a studio using recycled materials from the camp, to create props for our actions.
The first GREEDOZER costume was made from black plastic and cardboard.. I developed a durable costume, crafting it through many actions, arts festivals and street events. I experimented with an array of signs, banners and flags, as the icon matured. I was part of the Nomadic Action Group (NAG) that grew out of Nimbin activists, who helped set up installations, theatre pieces at vigils and actions. I later created a pedestal formed from nine painted 44 gallon drums, that gave me extra height to project well painted messages and symbols on the banners and flags. Greed Dozer western Australia part of the Nuclear free roadshow. photo by Earthheart
I received a $5,000 grant from the Australia Council for the Arts, which helped me with developing a road show, adding a PA system, a mike in the gas mask, a video display unit and tape deck. The living stature toxic tower installation also became a shelter, with a tent attached to the barrel structure. I transported the show in a painted blue Ford panel van, which I toured around Australia, performing at actions, festivals, etc.

In 1989 I completed my Australian leg of this show and ventured overseas to firstly support the Filipino peace movement at the Asia Pacific Conference, recreating and constructing the toxic tower at Clark Air Base, and then travelling out to the USA, to support the peace and environment movements there. I performed in San Francisco, joining the peace vigil at Concord Weapons Depot, from which I joined the walk to the Laurence Livermore Laboratories all part of the peace movements nuclear arms free protest.

I travelled with Seeds of Peace to the Nevada Test Site actions, where I teamed up with Doctor Death and the dancing dumplings. We travelled to Colorado for the Hiroshima Day actions at the Rocky Flats nuclear weapons factory. On the East coast I travelled with Woodstock activists to festivals and rallies, promoting military spending conversions for human and environmental needs.

crown casino S11 protest World economic Forum 2000. see you at "Stop C.H.O.G.M." Brisbane October 6th 2001

On my return to Australia, I decided to go back to Nimbin and create a cultural bridge with Woodstock, New York. Together with supporter we formed the Nimbin Aquarius Foundation.
I designed and painted the Nimbin flag, repainted deteriorating rooftop murals, and created a series of images to promote the significance of the Nimbin Rainbow region culture. In 1994, I travelled with my family to the USA to attend the Woodstock II, 25th anniversary festival.

25th anniversary of the "Aquarious Festival closing ceremony at the Bush factory Nimbin May 1998

In Woodstock I launched the Nimbin Woodstock Connection, recreated the toxic tower to perform at events. I returned to Nimbin to form a committee in support of developing Sister Village Project. I left the following year to participate in the 50th anniversary since the bombing of Hiroshima, and protesting Nuclear Testing. At the Woodstock Museum, I attended the Nimbin Woodstock Sister Village Project launching, with the Some Children of the Dream exhibition, which was sent from Nimbin for the occasion.  Woodstock Museum Hosting Nimbin "Some Children of the Dream" Exhibition 1995

Back in Australia, the Nimbin Woodstock Sister Village Connection was officially endorsed. by the Lismore Council. I continued working with the Nimbin Aquarius Foundation in preparations for the 25th anniversary since the Aquarius Festival. I also continued contributing to the peace and environmental movement with GREEDOZER AND COMPANY, designing, painting at actions and participating in forums.

Some of these are Jabiluka, Timbarra,, the S11, World Economic Forum Blockade at Crown Casino, and the M1 Stock Exchange blockade, Melbourne.
Since March 2001 GREEDOZER 1 is being exhibited at the National Museum of Australia.

From 31st July 2001 GREEDOZER II will be exhibited at the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney.


Aquarious Anniversary procession at Channon market, 1998