Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Y Now

Meg Harrington, Alex Prockter and Hamish Harrington at the exhibition opening.

The Mayor Cr Andrea Marian officially opened 'Y Now: 2010 VCE Graduate Exhibition' on 16 December 2010 at 6pm. The Mayor provided her opening remarks to a large crowd including secondary school principals, teachers and community representatives and, of course, the participating young artists and their families and friends. The exhibition opening provided an opportunity for the community to join in celebrating the students' talents and achievements in the visual arts and the conclusion of their VCE studies. The opening of 'Y Now' coincided with the announcement of VCE results and there was much excitement and discussion about future plans for study and careers.

This is the third time an annual celebration of VCE graduates has been presented at the Ararat Regional Art Gallery. It has taken some time to develop this event, but the success of the 2010 exhibition has established this VCE celebration as a core part of the Gallery's community programming. Eleven young artists from across the region feature in 'Y Now' representing their respective schools, Marian College Ararat, Donald High School, Lake Bolac College or Ararat College. This year's exhibition features many impressive artworks in a range of mediums including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, ceramics and textiles. The young artists have explored diverse subject areas including fairy tales, childhood themes, animals and nature and social justice issues. Some students have also presented their work in applied art areas such as fashion and theatre design. Journals from some of the exhibitors are on display as well, and these provide a sense of the process involved in creating the artworks featured in the exhibition.

Rainbow Love


Artist Cath Johnston and Jules Walker, Community Development & Health Promotion Manager for Grampians Community Health.

Ararat Rural City Mayor, Cr Andrea Marian officially opened Cath Johnston's exhibition, Rainbow Love on Thursday 9 December 2010 at 6pm. The opening was one of our new Mayor's first official engagements. Cr Marian spoke passionately about the struggle to receive equal rights and recognition for gay and lesbian people, with reference to Cath's exhibition and interactive 'Rainbow Love' sculpture. Cath's exhibition is deeply informed by her personal circumstances and values and its creation is motivated by a desire to break down prejudices in the community towards the recognition of same sex relationships.

'Rainbow Love' presents the idea of 'Love' in a sculptural form. Integral to this interactive artwork is the tying of rainbow ribbons by gallery visitors on to each of the sculptural letters that form the word "Love'. Cath said, "I have created this installation in support of the designation of 2011 as a year of action for equal love". Cath chose the word 'Love' for her sculpture because she feels it is "the unifying ethos by which all change, tolerance, acceptance, hope, equality and positivity evolve". In the introductory panel to the exhibition she writes, "We are all equal in love. My personal wish is that one day very soon all gay, lesbian, bisexual, trangender and intersex (GLBTI) people will be able to legitimise their love for one another by law. She then asks the viewer, 'What is your hope for our shared future?' ".