On Tuesday 23 August, the first SALA exhibition to be held at St Peter’s College had its Opening Night in the Drama Centre. The event jointly celebrated our Artist-in-Residence Program, and the School’s 175th Anniversary. A large turnout ensured that the evening was a vibrant one, with artists, staff, students, parents and other community members passionately discussing the diverse array of work on display. The collaborative Artist-in-Residence pieces on display were interspersed with pieces from each artist’s current practice, as well as work by our very own Arts staff, and the cumulative effect was one of creative diversity and skill. I give my heartfelt thanks to each and every artist for their contributions to this event, through their residency at the School and the contribution of a piece of work from their current practice.
The theme of this exhibition would not have been possible if it were not for the foresight of one man – our Head of Arts, Mr Scott Russell. Twenty five years ago (which coincidentally is when SALA first began), a fresh-faced young man stepped off a plane from Darwin, and into the grounds of St Peter’s College. Within two years of his arrival, and with generous funding from old scholar Commander Ponton (DAC 1938), Scott had initiated the Artist-in-Residence Program – a program which has, without fail, run each and every year since. This exhibition was an expression of his passion and dedication to the Arts, his desire to give all boys who have passed through this School an authentic Arts learning experience, and his belief in fostering in students a lifelong love of the Arts.
There are a myriad of individuals who assisted in bringing the SALA art exhibition into fruition; I would like to thank:
- The Council of Governors, Headmaster Tim Browning, and Deputy Headmaster Marcus Blackburn for their support of the Arts;
- The Art Faculty, who have given endless advice and put up with an ever-shrinking Art Office as I added more artwork and SALA paraphernalia to it;
- Paul Fabbro for his support and flexibility throughout our transformation of the Drama Centre;
- Scott Russell, Zoe Kirkwood, Anthony Fletcher and Darin Kennedy for their assistance in gathering and displaying the work;
- The Marketing Department for their assistance in promoting the event, and Chartwell’s Catering, for the Opening Night’s light refreshments.
- And finally, thank you to my wonderful Farrell House students who gave up their time to be there on Opening Night as ‘SALA Assistants’, answering questions about the artwork or assisting in the purchase of one of the pieces. 10 percent from each sale will go to St Peter’s College Service-Learning partner, Anglicare.
Given the success of this event, the Art Faculty now plan to hold an annual SALA exhibition, inviting the wider community to engage with what the Visual Arts at St Peter’s Collge has to offer.
Should you, or an artist you know of, like to be involved in SALA at St Peter’s College in 2023, please reach out via email to ATurner@stpeters.sa.edu.au