Adelaide is set for an arty winter feast as the 18th South Australian Living Artists Festival presents more than 600 exhibitions over 31 days.
The 2015 South Australian Living Artists (SALA) Festival will celebrate its 18th year with its biggest festival to date, presenting the works of more than 5000 artists in 610 free exhibitions across Adelaide and regions throughout August.
Encompassing all forms of visual art from painting, sculpture and jewellery to video and multimedia and much more, SALA will give South Australia an arty makeover as more than 550 venues from pubs and cafes to wineries, cinemas and even florists are turned into pop-up art galleries for 31 days.
Some of Australia’s most exciting and dynamic artists, both established and emerging, are represented in this year’s program, including: Robert Hannaford, Angela Valamanesh, Michelle Nikou, Nick Mount and Sue Kneebone.
Highlights of this year’s festival include:
LIVE ART AT THE AIRPORT: Artists Daniel Connell, Damien Shen and Luke Thurgate will entertain travellers with live drawing at the Adelaide Airport terminal on Friday afternoons as part of the “ID: Portraiture and Identity exhibition”. (August 7, 14, 21)
THE GOVERNOR’S GARDEN: Government House will become a SALA venue for the first time, with Governor Hieu Van Le inviting sculptors Astra Parker, Westley Tully and Sally Wickes to exhibit their work in the gardens. (Sunday, August 9, 1-4pm)
ADELAIDE OVAL GETS ART-BOMBED: Moving image artists Susan Bruce, Yoko Kaijo, Bridgette Minuzzo and Sam Oster take over the jumbo screens at Adelaide Oval’s south entrance with video artworks on the theme “Where sport meets art”. (August 7-31, hourly between 9am and 11pm)
SALA GALA IN THE GARDEN: A jam-packed carnival of arty fun for the whole family at Unley Road’s Soldier’s Memorial Gardens, with demonstrations, children’s art workshops, music and local food and wine. (Sunday, August 16, 10.30am to 4.30pm)
CACSA CONTEMPORARY: A major multi-venue presentation of works by 40 of SA’s leading contemporary artists, including Johnnie Dady, Siamak Fallah, Paul Sloan, KAB 101 and more, held at various exhibition spaces including the Contemporary Arts Centre of SA, Morphett St. (August 6-30)
THE ARTISTS’ VOICE WEEKEND: A host of top practicing artists will lead a full weekend of discussion and debate at the Art Gallery of SA’s Radford Auditorium about the state of visual arts in SA, now and in the future. (August 22-23, 10.30am to 4.30pm both days)
THE ART OF WINE COLLECTING: A first for SALA, this special long lunch in McLaren Vale will explore the connection between collecting fine wine and art with small batch winemakers Vale Cru and guest speaker Tamar Grischy, head of auctions at Langtons wine dealers. (August 23, 12.30pm, $150pp)
This year’s festival also sees the number of official artist residencies rise from two to five, with artists John Blines, Angela Valamanesh, Aurelia Carbone, Ruth Gregor and Laura Wills working in and around the SAHMRI, Adelaide Festival Centre, Flinders Medical Centre, Centennial Park and the Central Market to create artworks inspired by their surroundings.
SALA Festival Director Penny Griggs said the festival’s record largest program cemented August as “visual art month” in South Australia, with exhibitions and events to cater to all tastes.
“The SALA Festival is not only a wonderful time to celebrate our top artists and reconnect with our beautiful gallery spaces, but to discover fresh, emerging talent and new and unusual venues as they become galleries for the month,” she said.
“As well as exhibitions there is a range of events including art tours, opening nights, open studios and live art experiences that are well worth checking out. I hope every South Australian joins us to celebrate our local artists.”
The 2015 SALA Festival will be officially opened by Minister for the Arts Jack Snelling on Friday, July 31, at an invitation-only gala at the Art Gallery of South Australia. SALA featured artist and recipient of the 2015 SALA Wakefield Monograph, Giles Bettison will be keynote speaker at the event, and will announce the recipient of the 2016 title.
More information about all SALA exhibitions and events can be found online at www.salafestival.com or by calling 8233 0676. All SALA events are free unless otherwise noted.