Artist In Residence Announced27 Sep. 2023
The Barossa Women’s Artist Residency Project, driven by The Barossa Council and the Barossa Regional Gallery, aims to provide established female artists an opportunity to experiment and grow their practice within the environs of the Barossa region.
With its own unique identity, the project is the first of its kind in the Barossa Valley and quickly garnered support from both people within the local art scene and a myriad of industries.
In early 2023, donations were sought from women who live or work in the Barossa as a priority but not exclusively. This initiative provides an opportunity rarely offered exclusively to female artists and will help them to build more sustainable careers.
The inaugural donors have committed to donating $500 per year for three years, ensuring that the Barossa Women’s Artist Residency program will run annually in 2023, 2024 and 2025.
The Barossa Council has committed to in-kind support of the program, valued at approximately $4000 to $5000, with the Barossa Regional Gallery managing the programming and administration of this new arts project.
Expression of interest for the program was opened earlier this year to both Australian and international artists across all artforms.
“The team at the Gallery was absolutely thrilled by the strong response, so pleased with the breadth and calibre of the applications received,” shared Ms Sloane.
“Over 40 artists from a range of mediums – musicians, ceramicists, painters, digital artists and more applied for the Residency. While the majority of applicants were Australian, our reach attracted applicants from United States, Switzerland, South Africa and Spain. Their project ideas were absolutely enticing and exciting.”
Ultimately, the 2023 Artist in Residence was selected by a panel of industry professionals and program donors.
South-east Melbourne based landscape artist Belinda Wilson, who paints predominantly with oil, gouache and watercolour mediums, will live and work in the Barossa between the 6th November and 11th December 2023.
“In approaching the residency, I would first immerse myself in the region's culture and landscapes, exploring the vineyards, historic buildings, and natural beauty of the area. I would use this time to gather inspiration, sketch, and take photographs, and begin to develop ideas for new work.”
The residency project will enable local artists both male and female to broaden their networks and learn from artists who come from other parts of Australia and the world. As part of their residency, the artist will participate in a minimum of four public programs within the region. This may include a workshop or masterclass, mentoring a local artist, presenting an artist talk and or education session with a local school.
“This isn’t just about an outcome, a painting or exhibition at the end.” Ms Sloane said “It’s about the journey, connections and professional development throughout.”
Ms Wilson shared, “My work blends colours, shapes, and texture to create mesmerising landscapes that evoke a sense of tranquility and wonder. One of the highlights of my work is capturing the vastness and dramatic beauty of regional Victoria whilst drawing upon Australia’s rich colour palette.”
“I hope to create a body of work that reflects the distinct landscapes and culture of the Barossa Valley and contributes to the region's artistic heritage. The landscapes from South Australia will provide a changing backdrop and dramatic scenery that I wish to depict in new work.”
“This residency provides yet another opportunity to reflect on our rich cultural heritage and the place we call home,” Mayor Lange said. “We look forward to creating ongoing artistic opportunities that reinforce the Barossa as a premier arts and cultural destination.”