ARTISTS SHOW WHO THEY ARE
A GROUP of WA people living with an intellectual disability are using art to show pride in who they are.
Almost 140 pieces of art will be on display at Perth’s Central Park building this week as artists from all over the state come together for the annual As We Are Art Award and Exhibition.
With the exhibition incorporating work from award winning artists such as Greg Barr, David Guhl, Katrina Barber and Clive Collender among scores of others, co-ordinator Susie Waller said it always proved to be a visually aweinspiring experience for both artists and art-lovers alike.
“The As We Are Art Award and Exhibition was inspired by the creative expression of artists who have an intellectual disability and a belief in equal opportunities,” she said.
“It was initiated by Rosalind Lewis from Citizen Advocacy Perth West in 2002 as a one-off art award and exhibition and with great success and support, it has grown to become a prestigious and significant annual event on the WA arts calendar.
“The award is important as it is a platform for Western Australian artists who have an intellectual disability to showcase their talent, express their creativity, compete for prestigious awards and to exhibit and sell their artwork.
“For some in this artistic group, art is one of the few opportunities they have to communicate; this is their voice, their chance to be heard.”
White Gum Valley’s Paul Mitchell said art was good for people living with a disability because it was something they could do as well, if not better, than others.
“I enjoy painting very much because when Steve Irwin died I decided to paint a portrait of him. It won an award and was exhibited at several exhibitions and I decided to carry on painting different subjects,” he said.
The exhibition is at Central Park Tower foyer from September 25 to October 7.
Artists Paul Mitchell, Philip Smoker, Dave Giles, Martin Cahill and Jack McKevitt.