'The Hen That Laid the Golden Omelette'

Written on the 14 February 2014

'The Hen That Laid the Golden Omelette'


Artwork by people living with dementia – in a book called, ‘The Hen That Laid the Golden Omelette.’

The inspiring story of the Sefton Art Project – which introduced art classes and watercolour painting to people living with dementia – has resulted in a remarkable book called, ‘The Hen that laid the Golden Omelette.’


I joined CEO Alzheimer’s Australia Vic, Maree McCabe and co-authors, Barbara Potter, Barbara Davison to launch the book.

‘The Hen that Laid the Golden Omelette’ is filled with the heart-warming anecdotes of people living with dementia; with paintings and stories behind each creation. The book addresses the false assumption that people with dementia can no longer live productive lives. It also offers practical advice for others who would like to implement similar projects.

Co-authors Barbara Potter AM and Barbara Davison both have extensive personal and professional experience in working with people living with dementia and how painting can contribute to their well-being.

The book gets its title from a painting by the late Bunty Rutherford who, aged 92 years, was asked what she would like to call her painting. Barbara Potter recalled that there was a long pause as Bunty considered her answer.

"You could see her searching in her brain and then she found what she was looking for. With a huge crooked smile she said, ‘The Hen that Laid the Golden Omelette.’”


In Victoria around 78,000 people are living with dementia. Alzheimer’s Australia Victoria offers specialised dementia information, education and support services to people with dementia and their carers.


Pictured at the launch with Manager of Integrated Services Kew and Hawthorn, Uniting Age Well, Jill Monk; CEO Alzheimer’s Australia Vic, Maree McCabe and authors; Barbara Davison and Barbara Potter AM


More details from:



The National Dementia Helpline is 1800 100 500 or visit www.fightdementia.org.au/vic

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