Phoebe Hart

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Phoebe Hart
BornQueensland, Australia
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Phoebe Hart
BornQueensland, Australia

Phoebe Hart is a film maker and intersex rights activist, born with Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome. Hart is principal of Hartflicker, an Australian-based video and film production company.[1] She is known particularly for her autobiographical road trip movie, Orchids, My Intersex Adventure.

Early life[edit]

Phoebe Hart describes how she was told she would never menstruate nor have children, but the reasons were not discussed and the topic was taboo. When Hart was 17 years of age, her mother told her the family secret, that Hart had testes in her abdomen. Hart was pressured into an invasive surgery to remove her undescended testes, and in the documentary she faces the traumatic emotional scars from that operation and the secrecy associated with it.[2][1] During the shooting of her auto-biography, her parents initially refused to be filmed.[2][3]


Hart completed her film studies at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in 1995.[4] She has been involved in the children’s programme Totally Wild, Network Ten’s documentary unit, and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Race Around the World and Fly TV.

In 2009 Hart was awarded her doctorate from Queensland University of Technology, of which Orchids was a central element of her doctoral studies.[4] This documentary took six years for principal documenters (sisters Phoebe and Bonnie Hart) to film, using a variety of cameras including semi-professional digital cameras, domestic VHS camcorders, and Super 8.[2]


Phoebe Hart co-directed a documentary series called Downunder Grads on the condition of Australian higher education for the Special Broadcasting Service (SBS), screened in March 2008.[4]

Orchids, My Intersex Adventure[5] is an auto-biographical[1] 2010 documentary about one woman's struggle to understand her own intersex condition while interviewing other intersex people. Director Phoebe Hart used digital cameras and a small crew while on a road trip of self-discovery through various areas of Australia, recording some personal struggles disclosed to her by the other intersex individuals. The film won the ATOM Award for Best Documentary General.[6][7]

Hart also directed and co-wrote the Australian Broadcasting Corporation documentary Roller Derby Dolls about a group of women who play in roller derby.[4] Roller Derby Dolls screened in a prime-time slot, 9 September 2008.[8]


Hart is a former president of the Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome Support Group Australia[9]

Personal life[edit]

Phoebe Hart and her husband desired to start a family, and adopted a child. Hart's infertility and the stress of the adoption process strained their marriage.[1] Hart enjoys gardening and Bollywood dancing in her spare time.[4]



  1. ^ a b c d ATOM Award description "First Hand Films", Interview with Phoebe Hart, Melbourne, Australia. Retrieved on 26 October 2010
  2. ^ a b c *Orchids, My Intersex Adventure -Synopsis "Film Synopsis", 3 October 2010. Retrieved on 26 October 2010
  3. ^ Phoebe Hart, TEDx
  4. ^ a b c d e Queensland Government, Office for Women "Government biography of Phoebe Hart", 14 April 2009. Retrieved 26 October 2010
  5. ^ Hart, Phoebe "Orchids, My Intersex Adventure", 3 October 2010. Retrieved on 26 October 2010
  6. ^ *ATOM Award, Winners, 2010. "ATOM Award Winners, 2010", ATOM Awards 2010, Retrieved on 25 October 2010.
  7. ^ Researchers explain the science of sex, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, 17 October 2013.
  8. ^ Australia Broadcasting Company's Roller Derby Dolls, Documentary "Telly Guide Synopsis", 1 September 2009, Retrieved on 25 October 2010
  9. ^ What's new with the AISSG Australia?, Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome Support Group Australia.

External links[edit]