Success for our artists in first Fringe exhibition

Feb 20, 2023

John Carey MLA, Rocky Bay artist Hamish Lamont, and CEO Michael Tait stand in front of artwork at the "Our Story" exhibition at QT Hotel

The QT Hotel in Perth’s CBD provided a contemporary setting for the opening night of the Rocky Bay Studio’s “Our Story” art exhibition – part of Perth’s Fringe World Festival – showcasing the creative work of 29 artists living with disability.

The opening night event, which was officially opened by John Carey MLA, was an opportunity for the artists, their family, friends, and guests to explore the exhibition, meet the artists and purchase artworks. Eighteen artworks were sold just on opening night, with commission going to the artists themselves, and part of the sales going back into the Studio to fund art supplies for the many creative groups offered.

Mr Carey said that events like “Our Story”, which highlight the important contributions of people living with disability, are necessary for a thriving community.

I want to congratulate Rocky Bay. What all the artists and Rocky Bay should be proud of is that (the exhibition) is front and centre…this is loud, this is proud…it’s in a beautiful hotel and this year it’s part of Fringe Festival. It deserves this attention.

These stories deserve this focus and they deserve to be part of a premier event in our city.

John Carey MLA

John Carey MLA officially opens “Our Story”, with artist Carolyn Shervill, and General Manager Community Anne-Marie Cox

Each artist has their own story to tell; their highly personal narratives have escaped the pages of the books that form the canvas and have spilled over the cover for all to see – quite literally. Each artwork in “Our Story” is mounted on locally sourced second-hand canvas books and framed in white A3 shadow frames.

Most of the artists are already well-known with the general public after appearing in Rocky Bay’s “Ocean Meets Land” exhibition, which was held at the WA Shipwrecks Museum in Fremantle in 2021. They have all honed their skills attending the renowned art groups at Rocky Bay’s Studio in Mosman Park, with all artworks created in-house.

Support Worker, Ariel Katzir, an artist in her own right, says the artists are encouraged and supported to explore their creativeness.

“By exploring and developing these artistic voices we build confidence, and a sense of pride evident in every work of art”, says Ariel.

Studio artist Vanessa, whose artwork ‘Farm Cow’ features fabric and ribbons affixed on the canvas book cover, sums up the main message of the exhibition perfectly – “don’t judge a book by its cover.”

Artist Vanessa Catalucci

A big thank you to everyone who voted in the People’s Choice Award during the exhibition. This award recognises the favourite artwork of visitors to the exhibition.

Congratulations to Karen Shao, whose artwork ‘Wow’ is the winner of the People’s Choice!

We would like to thank the exhibition’s sponsor ES2 for their wonderful support, and the QT Hotel Perth for hosting the launch event and exhibition as part of Fringe World Festival.

The Studio is a vibrant art space which holds workshops and creative art sessions for customers focusing on skill development, personal interests and independent expressions in a broad range of creative outlets. The Studio gives each individual the space and autonomy to explore individual expression. To find out more click here, or call Rocky Bay’s Customer Engagement team on 6282 1900.

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