Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Who killed Florence Broadhurst?

 Florence Broadhurst an Australian artist and wallpaper designer was brutally murdered and no one has ever been charged.
The Waverley Art quilters have been studying Florence Broadhurst and it has been one of our most interesting topics so far. What a character she was and what an interesting life.

Book by Helen O'Neill

Florence Broadhurst was born in July 1899 in Mount Perry, Queensland and died in Sydney in October 1977 aged 78.

Florence must have been a very charismatic character who managed to continually re-invent her life. She worked very hard at being a success. From an acting and singing career in Shanghai and Singapore to running her own Dress Salon in London where she mixed in the latest social circles. In London she pretended to come from France, when she arrived back into Australia in 1954 she pretended that she was English. It made her seem more exotic and the press loved it.

Florence is best known for her wallpaper designs, her factory was in Sydney and she and her staff worked tirelessly and made sure that everyone from TV personalities to businesses owners wanted her designs.
How sad that she should be brutally murdered in her studio on 15th October 1977. People who knew her have speculated that it must have been someone that she knew. The infamous serial killer, John Glover was also a suspect, but no one has been charged and all the evidence destroyed and so there is no chance of using DNA evidence to prove who did it.
While studying Florence we all read the book by Helen O'Neil which is pictured above. After reading the book we watched the DVD called Unfolding Florence which is a quirky Australian film by Gillian Armstrong.
Unfolding Florence DVD

It was wonderful to watch the DVD because they interviewed many of the characters in the book and it was so interesting to see them speak because I felt as if I knew them.

For my little A3 sized Art quilt I used one of her most popular images called Japanese Fan. I enlarged and cropped it and called it Florence.
Florence ©2012 Linda Steele

RIP Florence Broadhurst, I am glad to have learnt about you, but I do hate unsolved mysteries.

Bye for now,


Frances Clements Fawcett said...

Hi Linda -what a wonderful 'who done it?" post! Thanks for sharing tidbits from Florence Broadhurst's life- fascinating! Your tribute quilt is lovely.
Cheers from Port Townsend, WA

: )

Karen said...

Very neat Linda -- thanks for the insight -- and your "Florence" is just beautiful !


Frances Leate said...

A very interesting post Linda and I just love a good "who done it" and am now keen to read the book and watch the DVD. I love your quilt. Take care

Linda Steele said...

Thanks Frances, Karen and Frances, what a larger than life character she was! The book seems to be available in libraries and is worth reading before seeing the film, which is occasionally on Channel 2.

Alyson Stanfield said...

Linda: I love your headline! It really hooked me and made me want to read the whole post. Thank you for introducing me to Florence Broadhurst.

Linda Steele said...

Thanks Alyson, I was thinking of your class when I wrote the headline!

Vickie said...

What an interesting post - I'm going to check out both the book and the film - it has to be interesting if it is by Gillian Armstrong. I'm having so much fun this Saturday reading through blogs by others in the Triage class - what a great group of people around the world!!!!

Linda Steele said...

Thanks Vickie, if you do manage to catch up with the book and film, read the book first, because the film is quirky and an unusual documentary.