Monday, 13 October 2014

Humans of Western Sydney: Merena

Chris Bath, Jarryd Hayne, Jelena Dokic, Harry Hopman - these are the creme de la creme of Western Sydney. The arguable heroes and champions of the West. The people you grew up holding with high regard to thinking "one day I'll make it out too". But for those of you pondering the next generation of those to make a name for themselves out of Western Sydney? You can add one Merena Nguyen to that list. In between preparing for her graduate art show, we caught up with the Wakeley-dwelling-care-free-soul-baring pixie. Check out what she had to say about our favourite side of town below.

Merena, 20, Visual Arts (Sculpture - Ceramics) Student

Tell us about yourself using your best bogan voice.
I googled ‘How to speak like a bogan’ – I question what that says about me…

Can we get your digits? (What postcode are you reppin’)

What is it about your upbringing that has inspired you the most?
Experience is brutal, but oh boy, do you learn. (Thanks C.S. Lewis) And so “Be kind. Be humble.” belongs on my very long list of quotes-about-life-and-deep-stuff. 

What’s Western Sydney’s best kept secret?
Avocado shakes/smoothies – they do not get enough praise!

Tell us Where the West Things Are.
As cliché as it sounds, I think there’s more than what meets the eye, or at least, more than what the media makes it out to be? I’d say it’s definitely culturally diverse. My favourite thing: it’s all about community and family. 

You’re stranded in line at Centrelink for 47 days waiting for the dole, what three dishes will you survive on from cafes out in the West?
$2 pork rolls, taro gelato, fried ice cream with coconut and chocolate syrup (you can never have too much dessert!)

It’s ten years into the future and you’ve just bought a new trailer van to conquer the world. Where do you go and what are you doing?
Road tripping around Oz. Geeking out at dinosaur and fossil sites because why not? I can be found singing Disney classics all the while playing the Ukulele (which I have not yet learnt…) I’ll have my own travelling avocado smoothie business. I can collect hats on the way. Maybe people too. Even better, write about people and collect their stories. In some way make some artsy fartsy things. Or save stranded dogs. Possibly own some ferrets. And when there is a zombie apocalypse then I know I can count on my trusty trailer van for survival.

Thanks homie. We'll let you get back to that can of VB you were busy skulling away before we came along...

Merena's works are available for purchase at Verge Gallery until October 17, details here.

Images sourced from: Merena Nguyen.


  1. Her artwork is awesome. Love the hair too!