Last week, half Singaporean-Chinese, half-Portuguese Jessica Gomes was unveiled as the new face of Australia’s oldest up-market department store David Jones, replacing world-renowned Aussie model Miranda Kerr as its ambassador.
It is the first time the retailer has chosen an Asian person to be its nationwide front face, recognising the fact that everyone is beautiful regardless of their skin colour in an increasingly diverse Australia.
Ethnic faces are starting to get featured more beside Caucasian faces in fashion catalogues today. Photo: Mabel Kwong
However, this decision is not necessarily an ode to multiculturalism on some levels. The department store’s choice is arguably an image-branding tactic to boost sales amidst an unstable local economy. Also, local media and modeling industry experts have been quick to harp praise on the multicultural-esque decision while forgetting the true essence of diversity.
After mulling about this over the past week, I reckon: perhaps.
The dim sim can be more accurately described as a Chinese-Australian culinary item.
The famous Australian dim sim shop in South Melbourne. There are always long queues here for this Chinese-inspired Australian snack. Photo: Mabel Kwong
In a globalised world where mobility is rife, people, ideas and traditions are bound to transcend different corners of the globe. Even culinary methods and styles move across continents as chefs travel and share their cooking skills in foreign places. As such, a variety of gastronomic methods tends to influence the creation of contemporary cuisines in today’s food-mad world.
Asian cuisine is aplenty around the city of Melbourne today. But after eating this cuisine quite a bit here I must say that Asian food in Australia differs considerably from the exact same gastronomic fare in Asia.
A large proportion of Asian food and the Asian eating experience in Australia is arguably unhealthy and often customised to suit Caucasian palates so as to appeal to the Anglo-Saxon population.
Salmon sushi (handroll) is all over Melbourne’s CBD, extremely popular with many. But there are other kinds of Japanese food out there too. Photo: Mabel Kwong
Chinese, Malaysian, Japanese and Indonesian cuisines are a few such cuisines constantly served up here. Some are more popular than others Down Under, but most of them usually do not taste or are presented akin to dishes in the Asian region.