‘Seed pots’ win Unley art prize

A work by local artist Charmaine Osborne comprising 150 ceramic pots presented in a recycled old orange crate has won the $5000 “All Connections to Unley” biennial art prize.

Unley is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year and artists were invited to respond to the sesquicentenary theme, with Osborne’s entry titled 150 seed pots for Unley green plots.

“Conceptually resolved, the work and the artistic statement together invoke the artist’s personal connection with and interpretation of Unley today and throughout its 150-year history,” the judges said.

“150 seed pots for Unley green plots draws together past, present and future, placing hope in an ongoing cycle of life and growth, aligned with a contemporary emphasis on city.”

The work will be reproduced as posters and displayed across Unley. All finalists’ works are currently on public display at the Hughes Gallery at the Fullarton Park Community Centre and can be viewed on the City of Unley’s website.

$150,000 public art opportunity

SA emerging artists are being offered an opportunity to cut their teeth on a major $150,000 public artwork being commissioned as part of the Goolwa Wharf Precinct upgrade.

The Helpmann Academy has partnered with Alexandrina Council to present the Helpmann Academy Major Public Art Commission, with eligible emerging artists or small collectives of artists working in a range of mediums invited to apply.

“Council is very supportive of the artwork’s theme being reflective of life in Goolwa and the deep connection felt by generations of families who reside or have visited our beautiful river port town,” says Alexandrina Mayor Keith Parkes.

The process includes mentorship and guidance in public art development, with the selected artist or artists to work with makers from George Street Studios to “develop their abilities and confidence in producing large-scale public artwork”.

Helpmann Academy chief executive officer Jane MacFarlane says it is an “invaluable opportunity” to produce a work that will become a part of Goolwa’s cultural identity. “It is also an unparalleled chance to extend their practical knowledge and skills, while building a profile in the public art realm.”

The Helpmann Academy is accepting expressions of interest from eligible artists until 5pm on June 29, with more information available here.

Powerhouse presentation

Lisa Havilah will present a talk on Reframing the institution. Photo: Toby Burrows

Lisa Havilah, chief executive of Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum, will share her ideas on the new role of cultural institutions in a free lecture in Adelaide next Wednesday.

The talk is part of a series titled Perspectives: shaping the world through visual culture – a collaboration between ACE Open, Guildhouse and The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre that encourages artists, makers and cultural thinkers to reflect on compelling and current topics in contemporary culture.

Havilah, who opened her first artist-run space in NSW’s Wollongong at just 21 and is a former director of Sydney’s Carriageworks arts precinct, has been CEO since early 2019 of the Powerhouse, charged with overseeing its renewal in what has been described as “the largest cultural infrastructure project in Australia since the Sydney Opera House”.

Lecture organisers say Havilah is “renowned for reshaping tested institutional structures into culturally and commercially vibrant contemporary arts epicentres” and will share her “personal ideology on the new role that cultural institutions will play and the moments that have shaped her innovative, ambitious approach to reframing the institution”.

Havilah will present Reframing the institution from 6-7pm on June 16 at the Allan Scott Auditorium in the Hawke Building at UniSA’s City West Campus. Bookings (here) are essential.

Writers SA’s winter line-up

Writers SA has launched an engaging line-up of online and in-person events for the winter months, including a session on film adaptation with Rebecca Summerton of Adelaide’s Closer Productions and an essay-writing workshop with award-winning Melbourne author Maria Tumarkin (Axiomatic).

Among other guest presenters on the program are SA young-adult author Vikki Wakefield, who will lead a series of brainstorming sessions and writing exercises covering compelling beginnings, perfect endings and everything in between, and suspense and thriller writer Tony Park (the author of more than 20 books set in Africa), who will share his top 10 tips for writing.

Kate Holden, author of the bestselling memoirs In My Skin and The Romantic, will host an eight-part “writing academy” that will take participants through the full process of writing their own story in a book, with an online chat group available to share ideas and feedback.

The full winter program can be viewed online.

Green Room is a regular column for InReview, providing quick news for people interested, or involved, in South Australian arts and culture.

Get in touch by emailing us at editorial@solsticemedia.com.au

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This article is supported by the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas.