December 9, 2010
The Local Newsletter - Division 9 Article
On 9 December 2010 “The Mudgeeraba Foundation” had its annual donation ceremony in the Mudgeeraba Foundation Centre (MFC). First held in 2001 in the Old Post Office it is combined since 2004 with the opening ceremony of “The d’Arcy Doyle Art Awards” which is now one of the most prestigious art exhibitions in Australia.
Welcomed by the Hinterland Community Band the guests first attended an auction of 3 portraits of Karmichael Hunt in the presence of the Rugby/AFL star. After that entertaining introduction Ros Bates MP, State Member for Mudgeeraba, officially opened the ceremony which was also attended by Cr Ted Shepherd (Div 9) and other distinguished members of the community. Then Dr Peter Ochsenbein, owner of the Foundation and Director of its Trustee Mudg Pty Ltd made donations to 9 local and regional organisations and institutions (total value: $22,200).
For more details see Peter’s website (www.mudg.com. au) which is presently being updated. Also sponsored by the Mudgeeraba Foundation was the prize money (total: $13,000) subsequently handed over to 7 artists by Earle Hinschen, founder and director of the exhibition who once again professionally organised the event together with a faithful and experienced team of hard working volunteers. For more details see Earle’s website (www.darcydoyleartawards. com.au) which is presently being updated.
THE MUDGEERABA FOUNDATION Private Charitable Trust Fund (est. June 1999)
Peter explaining a donation ($10,000) to Robina Hospital Rehabilitation Dept, represented by Leia Barnes
Earle, Jenny Doyle and Peter with the winner of the 1st prize ($6000), David Ardley (left)
(Photos by Studio Yanome)
The Local Newsletter "Mail News"
Prize to Honour Coast Art Icon
ENTRIES are being sought for a Gold Coast Hinterland Art Award Inaugurated four years ago to honour a world acclaimed artist, who won Mudgeeraba's hearts with his wide sweeping landscapes and the colourful characters of its pioneer past. This award is held yearly in Mudgeeraba.
The $10,000 art prize, the D'Arcy Doyle Landscape Award is held annually as a tribute to the late artist, who lived for many years in Mudgeeraba. Established artists from across Australia have lodged entries in this year's prize. Organiser Earle Hinschen's faith that an award honouring D'Arcy Doyle's enduring contribution to the art medium would be remembered has been justified with recognition from the Australian Arts Council. "Viewers are drawn into the award," he said. The closing date for entries is November 15.
Artworks will be displayed at the Mudgeeraba Foundation Centre, established by local resident and former Swiss philanthropist Dr Peter Ochsenbein for the benefit of creative community groups, from December 7-17.
Enquiries: Earle Hinschen on 5525 2887.
january 9, 2009
The Local Newsletter - Division 9 Article
The Mudgeeraba Foundation (established June 1999) had its annual Donation Ceremony in the Mudgeeraba Foundation Centre (MFC) on 11 December. 2008. It is combined with the opening ceremony of the d'Arcy Doyle Art Award exhibition (see www.mudg.com.au and www.darcydoyleartawards.com.au).
Mayor Ron Clarke traditionally opened the evening event which is also regularly attended by Dianne Reilly MP, State Member for Mudgeeraba. Then Dr Peter Ochsenbein, owner and director of Mudg Pty Ltd, Trustee of the Mudgeeraba Foundation, granted donations of more than $55,000.
Dr Ochsenbein offered a collection of 220 art prints (famous painters of the last century) with a value of $20,000 to a not yet selected GC art school. There followed donations of a total of $22,500 to four organisations. Firstly, the Mudgecraha Old Post Office Heritage Centre received $5,500 (in addition to $7,000 donated previously) for a bronze sculpture by Arno Schilling (recipient of the Mudgeeraba Foundation Award) to be unveiled on 26 January 2009 (Australia Day) on the Mudgeeraba Green by Cr Ted Shepherd.
Secondly, the Gold Coast section of the Australian Society for Keyboard Music received $3,000, in addition to $3,000 last year, for the Gold Coast Open Piano Competition.
Thirdly, the Gold Coast Lapidary Club received $4,000 tor a high performance metal detector, and the fourth recipient was Queensland Rowing ($10,000) for a special racing event (see photo with CEO Christian Renford and Dr Peter Ochsenbein).
The latter is of Australia-wide interest because its goal is the first competition between boats of the officially (FISA) not yet existing Octuple Scull class (8 rowers, each having two oars) which should he able to break all regatta records. To mark the seriousness ot this project, the CEO of Rowing Queensland was accompanied by two top athletes, one of them Sam Conrad, an Olympic rower who competed at Beijing this year in the men's 8+ and also has the honour of being a third generation Olympian (his father competed at the 1976 Olympics, and grandfather competed at the 1956 Olympics). Peter Ochsenbein promised to urge the Queensland Govemment to include the carefully prepared event in the Q150 sesquicentenary celebrations. He is convinced that, due to stronger and more skilled athletes and better materials, the arguments against this class have become obsolete and that some record times would inevitably lead to approval by national rowing bodies, and eventually by the FISA.
After Dr Ochsenbein presented his general donations, Dianne Reilly MP handed out the d'Arcy Doyle Art Awards to seven winners, with a main prize of $6,000, totalling $13,000.
Dr Ochsenbein then informed the numerous guests in the packed MFC about his confidential personal efforts to organise an immaterial but politically invaluable donation to the whole region, namely to have the Gold Coast City Council granted Lord Mayoralty by Her Majesty The Queen on the occasion of Queensland's 150th birthday.
Between April and November, Peter corresponded independently, first with the Premier's office, then with the Mayor's office and finally with the Governor General's office. His move was based on very thorough internet studies about all aspects of the issue, which resulted in a comprehensive document. Therein it is made clear that the honour is not granted to a person but to the Council and the population as a whole for their efforts and achievements. Among the convincing arguments he also mentioned that there are already ten Lord Mayoralties in Australia. Being of Swiss origin, (a 'Swaussie') Peter argued that even strict Republicans might not oppose. He is aware that Ron Clarke in his well known modesty, is not keen to become Lord Mayor although, due to his integrity and the Gold Coast's importance, many think he is one. Audience applause proved there is indeed considerable support, and that the issue may not yet be closed - provided that Gold Coast residents want to have their say.
JANUARY 26, 2009
Australia Day Woodchopper Statue Unveiling
On Australia Day 2009, a magnificent new statue of an early pioneer Woodchopper and his faithful dog was unveiled on the Mudgeeraba Village Green.
The statue was initiated, planned and organised by the Committee of the Old Post Office Heritage Centre and erected by the Gold Coast City Council.
The sculpture on the Mudgeeraba Green shows whimsically a worker of the early timber industry representing the Mudgeeraba area and was unveiled by Gold Coast City Councillor Ted Shepherd (Division 9) in the presence of the artist, Arno Schilling, and many representatives of the community and its organisations.
The Mudgeeraba Old Post Office makes a perfect backdrop for this character from our pioneering past.
Photo from left to right: Margaret May MP, Federal Member of McPherson (Shadow Minister for Ageing), Dr Peter Ochsenbein, Arno Schilling (the sculptor) and Cr Ted Shepherd.
Gold Coast Sun
Swiss scientist with the pioneering spirit
One of Mudgeeraba's most notable senior citizens and more recent settlers, Dr Peter Ochsenbein, is proud to have been born in 1928. He reckons the late 1920s - otherwise known as the Roaring Twenties - were very special years. "Mickey Mouse was created in 1928," said the sprightly senior who swims three times a week and does yoga. "The Great Depression started in 1929 and Queen Elizabeth, who is just a year older than me, was born in 1927."
Born and raised in Bern, Switzerland, Peter Ochsenbein studied chemistry and physics at a Basel university where he was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy in chemistry with the highest possible honours.
In March, Dr Ochsenbein, a bachelor, celebrated his 80th birthday and was honoured for his renowned local charity work through his Mudgeeraba Foundation Centre, a community recreation centre, in School Street. Last week he was busy organising his annual donation ceremony as part of the centre's biggest annual vent, the 10-day d'Arcy Doyle Awards.
The Swiss scientist might not fit the category of district pioneer, but he has pioneered one of the Coast's most remarkable charities that will leave a lasting legacy. "My will is not operative yet because I haven't signed it." he said. "According to my will everything will go into this foundation. But the will also has a deed attached so my followers will be bound to continue the work I've been doing."
Dr Ochsenbein came to Mudgeeraba in 1990 looking for land after retiring from a life engrossed in scientific research as secretary general with the Patent Documentation Group. The international body provided information and documentation on scientific research. "I never married - I never had time," he confessed. "As I never had any children that I'm aware of I was able to travel to 80 countries and many islands," he said. "But I came to decide the Gold Coast was the best."
In 1990 he drove from Coolangatta to Nerang with a real estate agent looking for a place, and had no doubts when he found his Cromwell Court property at Tallai that it was the right place. He said his wealth came from his well-paid position with the scientific organisation, savings, a good superannuation fund and the high value of the Swiss franc against the Australian dollar. "My salary in Switzerland was about the same as (then prime minister) Paul Keating's back in the 1990s," he said.
ln1999Dr Ochsenbein decided to 'put his money into something useful' and start the (Mudgeeraba Foundation) centre. He bought a block of land in School Street, not realising it would take him two years of battling with council bureaucracy to get the centre built. The wily Swiss scientist formed a board for the centre before it was even built, and stacked it with influential local people. The strategy worked and the council eventually overruled the objections of the bureaucrats.
Built heritage-style, it eventually opened in 2004 and has become a central part of Mudgeeraba's community life.