Channel 7’s Big Brother is said to be the ultimate social experiment, so it seems is this contestant’s home life.
The Big Brother social experiment has often been a young person’s game, but Sarah Jane Adams is having none of that.
At 66, Sarah Jane says women of a certain age are often “invisible” in mainstream media – but the outspoken style icon is no shrinking violet.
“Life is basically a social experiment, isn’t it? And at my age, I prefer the term ‘elder’ rather than ‘older’. It’s all about how you frame the language. We glorify the youth and basically invalidate growing old,” she says.
“People are terrified of growing old. I wanted to present the concept that being elder is of equal, or if not more valuable, than youth.”
Sarah Jane says going into the Big Brother house was one of the hardest things she’s ever done, but the rewards were also great.
“It was a very safe space, but I would like to point out that I was representing myself alone.
“I don’t want to be a poster women for everyone else. I am not #diversity #olderwoman. I am offended by being wheeled in as an ad for the diversity ticket. Every woman should be offended by that, too.”
Based in Sydney, the bold fashionista says she likes to live simply in her original 1870s home.
“I live in a very old-fashioned way – very simply and frugally. I am at a stage in my life where I am getting rid of stuff, and that in itself is empowering.”
AT HOME WITH BIG BROTHER’S SARAH JANE ADAMS
Who: Big Brother housemate, Sarah Jane Adams.
Where: Period home with original features, with husband David Taylor.
Favourite Thing: I am very partial to the colour orange. Orange brings joy into my life, so here are a few selects of orange stuff in my life.
Inspiration: I am very much a curator of things that have a meaning.
Home: is I am very fine to lock up this place and walk away. I don’t have an attachment to things — I have clarity in the fact they are just things.
MY FAVOURITE THINGS
Indian bottle tops
This was collected by my girls (Sarah Jane has two adult daughters) at a beachside
bar in Palolem, Goa, 1999.
It’s now used as a doorstop.
Toy cow, shiva, and a Ganesh finger puppet
The cow represents my husband, David. One of his pleasures in life is photographing cows.
Then, Shiva represents transformation, while Ganesh is the remover of obstacles.
I used to own a car just like this and it was really bittersweet giving it up, but at this stage in my life, I am moving things on, in a good way.
Opium pipe found in Bermondsey Market in 1980
I had no idea what this incredible thing was. I believe it to be from ‘The Golden Triangle’, where most of the world’s heroin was produced even earlier than the 19th and 20th centuries.
School satchel from 1972
This was the year I first fell in love and this satchel belonged to him, my first ever boyfriend. He was an artist and the satchel was customised by him.
Metal Cash Tin containing Humbrol enamel paints
I used these in the 1970s to make jewellery, which I sold in the markets in London.
I purchased this in Liverpool, England, in the late 1970s, when I was just starting out as an antique dealer. I paid 75 pounds for it. Perhaps my ashes will temporarily rest here.
Burmese lacquer box
Traded for a transistor radio in Mandalay, Burma (Myanmar) in 1981. It now contains a selection of loose gemstones.
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