Sunset Lecture Series

“Au plaisir de vous voir.”

A sunset lecture series by Zoom

In literature, art, cuisine and fashion, the French have been innovative, creative and daring. Join Francophile Susannah Fullerton in an exploration of the lives and legacies of four fascinating French individuals, all born in the 19th century. These brilliant people enriched culture, changed what we do, see, eat and wear, and their influence is around us all to this very day.

Not solely greats of literature, these people came from other walks of life. Meet the man whose love for his staff introduced efficiency to professional kitchens; the painter who changed the course of art, even though his work was regularly rejected by the official Salon; the French exile who wrote the first truly international bestseller; and the remarkable woman who radicalised fashion to be not only elegant but also comfortable to wear.

Mondays 13, 20, 27 Sept, & 4 Oct 2021, 5 – 6pm (AEST)

The ‘magnifique’ Coco Chanel exhibition coming soon to Melbourne’s National Gallery has reignited my love of all things French and a longing for its culture and history. This time I am not focussing just on writers, but other trailblazers whose impact is still felt today.

The talks will be recorded, so if the time doesn’t suit for you to join me live, you can watch the recording whenever you like. (You must still purchase access to the talks.) Each talk will be accompanied by ‘further reading’ lists and links to set you off on exciting by-ways and explorations, travelling virtually to the place that attracts more tourists than any other country in the world.

These sunset lectures are just the way to wind down after a hard day’s lockdown. Pour a nice glass of (French) wine, make yourself comfortable, and be immersed in ‘la Belle France’. I look forward to having you join me!


Select the pack of 4 for A$50, or individual talks one at a time for A$15 ea.

  Easy online ordering: add your choice below to your shopping cart for payment via Credit Card or PayPal; or
  Phone orders welcome (Australia only): payment via Credit Card, Cash, Cheque, EFT please call 02 9380 5894 or 0411 031 306
  Gift: Every order will receive a gift from me – a free copy of my Literary Reader’s Guide to Gustave Flaubert & Madame Bovary

The full sunset lecture series – money saving pack of all 4 Zoom talks

Register for all four lectures in one easy purchase, and save money too. Get all 4 for A$50.00. (You can purchase individually below.) A recording of each talk will be sent the day after the live streamed talk.

All the Zoom talks: Mondays 13, 20, 27 Sept, & 4 Oct, 5-6pm (AEST). JUST A$50.00

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Victor Hugo and the Historical Novel – Monday, 13 Sept. 2021, 5-6pm (AEST) 

Considered the greatest of all French poets, Hugo also gained renown as a novelist and introduced the historical novel into France. His Les Misérables has had a huge impact on artists, musicians, politicians, other writers, and it can be argued that it is the most important novel of the 19th century.

Get to know the man behind the novel and discover his extraordinary impact, not only in France, but around the world. Order single talk only for $15 (AUD)

Further Reading, purchase the video and more about Victor Hugo here

Paul Cézanne and the birth of Modernism – Monday, 20 Sept. 2021, 5-6pm (AEST) 

Both Matisse and Picasso are said to have remarked ‘Cézanne is the father of us all’, and the one painter whose work other artists longed to own was Paul Cézanne. He didn’t sell much and his work was regularly rejected by the official Salon, and yet he changed the course of art history.

Learn about the life, works and influence of this artistic genius. Order single talk only for $15 (AUD)

Further Reading, purchase the video and more about Paul Cézanne here

This talk is sponsored by Cherry Hood
One person registered for this session will win access to her one hour video demonstrating her unique painting technique valued at $79. Visit her website to see more of her artwork.

Auguste Escoffier and the Culinary Tradition – Monday, 27 Sept. 5-6pm (AEST)

Chef, author of cookbooks and restaurateur, Auguste Escoffier, revolutionised French cuisine, getting rid of heavy sauces, simplifying and codifying recipes. He also forever changed the workplace of the professional kitchen, streamlining procedures and improving working conditions and safety.

Find out about his recipes, his partnership with the Ritz, what he thought of English food, and how he altered French cooking for ever. Order single talk only for $15 (AUD)

Further Reading, purchase the video and more about Auguste Escoffier here

This talk is sponsored by The Fatal Path by Shirley LaPlanche
One person registered for this session will win a signed paperback copy of the brand new novel, The Fatal Path, a tense drama set against the magnificence of the Sydney harbour and the south coast beaches valued at $36. Visit Shirley’s website to learn more about this brand new psychological thriller and her other work.

Coco Chanel and the Revolution of Fashion – Monday, 4 Oct. 5-6pm (AEST)

In late 2021 and early 2022 a fabulous exhibition is coming to Australia – ‘Gabrielle Chanel: Fashion Manifesto’. It will examine the legacy of this remarkable woman, who introduced the Little Black Dress, made women not only elegant but also comfortable, and whose perfume is the biggest selling perfume of all time. Chanel is considered one of the 100 most important people of the 20th century.

Get to know the woman behind the clothes, admire her creations, learn about her lovers and her Nazi connections, and experience the beauty of her creations. Order single talk only for $15 (AUD)

Further reading, purchase the video and more about Coco Chanel here

This talk is sponsored by French Cargo
One person registered for this session will win the beautiful Paris Candle from French Cargo. Visit their website for unique French-style gifts.

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Thank you to my sponsors

Thank you to these businesses who have sponsored this series of talks I appreciate it very much. Please support them if you can. I’ve stayed at Deepwater@Hawkesbury and it’s a stunning location and the ultimate place to read a good book.

We can’t go to France, but how about a local weekend away?

Even though we can’t travel to France at the moment, perhaps a weekend at a magnificent absolute waterfront property might be something you could look forward to. Every purchaser of the full series of talks will go into a draw for the chance to win a weekend getaway at ‘Deepwater’ located on the Hawkesbury River, just 1 hour north of Sydney. You’ll be able to take the holiday after restrictions are lifted. See details here.

Deepwater @ Hawkesbury River,

French Cargo
Paris candle by French CargoImmerse yourself in Paris as the notable fragrances of Jasmine, Rose and Citron evoke memories of a morning at Le Marché aux Fleurs, a coffee at Café de Flore, and a stroll through the cobblestone streets of Les Marais. Enjoy the memorable and unique scent of the Paris candle from French Cargo, valued at $45.

Cherry Hood Art
Sabine, 2019, by Cherry HoodCherry Hood is an Australian artist well known for her haunting, large-scale images of faces. Her residential painting workshops in southern NSW are highly sought after and she now offers tutorial videos on her website. Cherry has provided access to her one-hour video demonstrating her unique painting technique valued at $79.

NOTE: These prizes are restricted to residents of Australia. If a prize winner is located internationally Susannah will contact you to discuss alternatives.


Please ensure you have downloaded and signed up to Zoom before the lecture begins

You will be sent a Zoom link within 24 hours of the commencement time of each talk. The sessions take place on Mondays 13, 20, 27 Sept, & 4 Oct, 2021. Please look out for it to arrive and check your spam folder if you don’t see it. Please contact us on if this email fails to arrive.

Each talk will begin promptly at 5pm and the waiting room will open from 4.50pm. Please ensure you are online before the start to allow admittance.

All the talks will be recorded and so registered viewers can access them at a later time.

Here are some Zoom tips to help the meeting run smoothly:
  • Your mic will be muted when you enter, I’d be grateful if you leave it that way.
  • You are welcome to ask questions, please type them into the chat function and Cheryl will pass them on at the end.
  • The meeting will be recorded, if you’d prefer not to be seen, please disable your video.
  • We suggest you set your view to Speaker View to focus on Susannah, not other attendees.
  • This video may help with Zoom settings:

A link to view the recorded session will be sent to registered participants within 24 hours of the meeting.

The link provided to you is not to be shared. Your booking constitutes viewing on one device only.

Susannah Fullerton cannot take responsibility for any technical difficulties experienced due to personal device failure and will not issue refunds in this situation.

Three days notice is required to qualify for a refund. All refunds attract an administration charge of 25% of the ticket prices. With subscription tickets there are no refunds for single sessions, unless a session is cancelled. Please contact us for details.

If Susannah has to cancel you will be offered an alternative date or a full refund.

Let’s talk about it:
Are you a Francophile like me? Do you think any one of these individuals had a greater impact than the other three? Let’s discuss it here.

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