Untitled is an exhibition that celebrates the artistic talent of Year 11 and 12 visual art students from Swinburne Senior Secondary College. The exhibition was selected to feature as part of the 2020 Community Exhibition program at Town Hall Gallery.
This sophisticated showcase of photography, printmaking, drawing, painting and time-based media works was installed on Monday 16 March, one day before we announced the closure of all arts and leisure facilities in Boroondara, to protect the community and staff from the risks associated with coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Photographs of Untitled are now available to view below. Swinburne Senior Secondary College Visual Arts Team Leader Matt Simmons says, ‘Many students were quite deflated when they thought the exhibition wasn't going to happen - they understood, but were still disappointed. It’s a big consolation to see the students’ work displayed online.’
The school motto at Swinburne Senior Secondary College is 'Educating Individuals' and they model everything around this, including the students’ arts education. Students are encouraged to proudly be themselves, which creates an environment where diversity and authenticity is celebrated. The teaching staff believe that enabling their students to feel free to express themselves artistically is what facilitates great art.
Every artist featured in Untitled brings their own perspective and creative approach to their practice. The students were all encouraged to work across a range of art-forms, with access to cutting edge equipment including a 24-enlarger darkroom with capacity for large format printing, and digital and analogue equipment such as large banner printers, mac labs, scanners and medium format cameras.
Each student has developed their own visual language. Traversing a broad range of themes including nostalgia, memories, childhood, surrealism and the self, Untitled is a celebration of the emerging arts practice of the young adults studying in Boroondara.
Year 12 Studio Art Photography student Lily Walzl-Hearity’s work Untitled (2019) explores the harmful aspects of vanity.
‘Using sponged developer and burning prints in the darkroom, I created a mottled, decaying effect similar to solarisation,’ she says.
‘I then turned these prints into negatives through an inversion darkroom technique. The line of the mirror is used to dissect the form of the model and expose vanity as detrimental.’
Zoe Gourlay has used portrait photography, colour and text to represent the diversity and beauty of the LGBTQIA+ community and Adoni Chessel’s photographs of the natural world explore memory and the effects of time. Genevieve Ryan uses experimental film techniques to explore loss and friendship, and Harry Hall depicts a guitarist in zany, brightly coloured acrylic paints, among many others.
Matt Simmons says exhibiting with Town Hall Gallery is a fantastic opportunity for their students. ‘This exhibition gives our students experience working with a vibrant community art space and an opportunity to exhibit their art works beyond the scope of the traditional school setting. Many of them are pursuing careers in the visual arts and being able to share exhibition space with established, renowned artists is something that will stay them for a lifetime.’
This is the second year a selection of Swinburne Senior Secondary College students have exhibited at Town Hall Gallery as part of the Community Exhibition program. In 2019, Individualism celebrated the emerging arts practice of Year 12 students from 2018.
For anyone interested in holding their own exhibition at Town Hall Gallery, please consider applying for the City of Boroondara’s Community Exhibition program.
Applications for the 2021 program are open now until 28 June 2020.