Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Transposing the Common II - Rodney Pople

National Art School Painting Lecturer Rodney Pople is opening a new exhibition in Shanghai with Zhao Qin on 7 November: Transposing the Common II.

Speaking of his work, Felicity Fenner says, “Our appreciation of historic cultures is influenced by personal experience and perception, by the big and small things that define our place in the world. Foremost among these are religion and sex, which have since the birth of Christianity been intertwined, outwardly denying common ground though inwardly bound by enslavement and temptation. In its citing of altarpiece paintings by Titian and other Western art masters, Pople’s work is a timely reminder that art that speaks of its times must embrace both the sublime and the salacious.”

Born in Australia in 1952, Rodney Pople received a Diploma of Fine Arts (Photography) from the Tasmanian School of Art before undertaking postgraduate studies in sculpture at the Slade School of Art in London and the New York Studio School. He has been exhibiting annually since 1978 and has recently won the Sulman Prize at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (Sydney, 2008) and the Parliament Art Prize (Sydney, 2009). His work is held in state galleries, the National Gallery of Australia and prominent private collections, including those of Russell Crowe and Spike Jonze.

The exhibition will be held at the Eastlink Gallery, F5 Building 6, 50 Moganshan Road, Shanghai China and runs until 21 November 2009



Watch students of the National Art School flex their creative muscle as the beautiful
grounds of the historic Darlinghurst Gaol are transformed into hell on earth for Timberlake
Wertenbaker’s Our Country’s Good. Ghosts of inmates past will be brought to life as the
text explores the brutality of punishment and the redemptive power of Art. A night of
pick-pockets, whores, drunken sailors and gentlemen, but in this burnt-out country are all
what they seem? With the supplies dwindling and a surplus of rum on hand to subvert the
status quo, there will be either metamorphosis or mutiny. A moving artwork directed by
the incorrigible Sarah Enright for the National Art School Theatre Society, this is sure to be
an eye opening night at the theatre!


Reserve your place through Friends of the National Art School.
Ph: 02 9339 8635
The National Art School
Cnr Forbes and Burton Streets
Darlinghurst, just behind Taylor Square


Click Here for Media Release...

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Big Draw

Saturday 17 October 10am-5pm

The National Art School is opening its doors for a fun family day where everyone can try their hand at drawing, be that chalk drawing, life drawing or whatever inspires you. See artists at work and join in. This event is part of the City of Sydney's Art and About Festival, and the international Campaign for Drawing.

Events include:

Chalk Drawing - from Forbes Street
Postcard Drawings - NAS Campus cafe
Big Drawing (The Parade) - Forbes Street entrance
Life Drawing - in The Chapel
Site Specific Drawing - outside the NAS Gallery
Animal Drawing (from the Prop Room) - on campus, Building 11

Come along and get creative!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Position Vacant – Head of Academic Studies

This is a pivotal senior appointment for the School as it implements its new strategic direction.

Click here for application information and forms

Thursday, September 17, 2009

National Art School Open Day

Come onto our historic campus and see for yourself what the National Art School has to offer students who wish to extend their practice in the visual arts.

WHEN: Wednesday, 23 September 10am-4pm
WHERE: National Art School, Cnr. Forbes & Burton Streets, Darlinghurst 2010

Hear artist talks, information sessions, take tours of the studios and visit our National Art School Gallery (The 58th Blake Prize will be on exhibition).


Information desks outside Building 25 all day, with staff and students on hand to answer questions.

10.00am Cell Block Theatre

Opening address and welcome
Registration desk for open Studio Tours led by students

Building 25 (til 1.00pm)
Drawing class with Carole Griffin “Drawing The Portrait Head”

10.45am Studio Tours commence

12.00pm Tours end in NAS Gallery to view 58th Blake Prize Exhibition

2.00pm Cell Block Theatre

Art Forum Talk with Leslie Rice
Winner of the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize (2007), graduate of the
National Art School and Tattoo Artist

2.00pm Building 25
Drawing class with Carole Griffin “Drawing The Portrait Head”

Outside Building 25
Register for open Studio Tours led by students

NAS Gallery – 58th Blake Prize Exhibition
Studio Tours

4.00pm Close

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Gallery Talk Friday, 18 September 1pm FREE

Rosemary Crumlin, Art Historian and author of the forthcoming major monograph on the history of the Blake Prize will lead a tour through this year’s exhibition.

National Art School Gallery, National Art School, Forbes Street, Darlinghurst NSW 2010.

Art Forum Wednesday, 9 September 1pm FREE

Join 58th Blake Prize exhibiting artists as they discuss their work with Rev Rod Pattenden.
National Art School Gallery, National Art School, Forbes Street, Darlinghurst NSW 2010

Out of this World, Saturday 5 September, 2–4pm - FREE

Starting at the Art Gallery of NSW this tour will introduce the print works of William Blake on view in Printmaking in the Age of Romanticism and will continue on to the NAS Gallery to consider Blake’s legacy in relation to the work of contemporary artists in this year’s Blake Prize. Refreshments will be served. RSVP (02) 9339 8744.

Click here for Tour details

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Special Guest Lecture

Friday 21 August 2009


Stephen Farthing RA
‘this is drawing’

A Cloud over Amagansett on Long Island. Photo S. Farthing 2007.

A Cloud over Amagansett on Long Island. Photo S. Farthing 2007.

The Rootstein Hopkins Professor of Drawing
at the University of the Arts London, UK
will offer in 53 minutes an explanation in
pictures and words of what drawing is.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Alan Peascod - Influences and Dialogue - Gallery Talk

The National Art School Gallery is currently showing an exhibition of ceramics featuring works by the acclaimed Alan Peascod and other ceramicists who have been influenced by him.

Join Craig Judd, co-curator of the exhibition Alan Peascod Influences and Dialogue for a discussion on Alan Peascod's practice and lasting influence on Australian ceramics.

When: Wednesday, 5 August at 6pm - FREE
Where: NAS Gallery, National Art School, Forbes Street Darlinghurst NSW 2010

The exhibition runs until 15 August.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

NAS student ceramics exhibition

To coincide with the Australian Ceramics Triennale, National Art School students Addison Marshall, Annabel Mason and Deborah Burdett invite you to view their work in "this is not a bush dance".

The Clay Room
Ground floor, Building 24
National Art School
Forbes St
Darlinghurst NSW 2010

Thurs 16 - Mon 20 July
Mon 27 - Fri 31 July
9am - 5pm

Thursday, May 28, 2009

National Art School Fellowship

The Hon Nathan Rees MP, Premier of New South Wales presented the 2009 National Art School Fellowship to Bert Flugelman AM, at the National Art School Graduation Ceremony last week.

A sculptor and painter, Bert Flugelman graduated from the National Art School 59 years ago. Presenting the Fellowship, the Premier said Mr Flugelman has made an enormous contribution to the visual arts in Australia and been a great teacher and mentor to young sculptors. He has also shown unwavering support for the National Art School.

Mr Flugelman was born in Vienna and arrived in Australia in 1938. He studied Sculpture at the National Art School between 1947 and 1950. Regarded as one of Australia’s pre-eminent sculptors, his works have been commissioned form many public sites in rural and metropolitan areas, and include the Dobell Memorial in Sydney and The Cones in the Sculpture Garden of the National Gallery in Australia.

Inaugurated in 2002, the National Art School Fellowship has been awarded to Colin Lanceley AO, Peter Rushforth AM, John Coburn AM, Geoffrey Bardon AM, Elisabeth Cummings, Margaret Olley AC and John Olsen AO OBE.

NAS 2009 Graduation, left to right: Prof Anita Taylor, Director NAS, Minister for Education and Training Ms Verity Firth, NSW Premier and Minister for the Arts Nathan Rees, Bert Flugelman, John Olsen AO OBE, Colin Lanceley AO, Elisabeth Cummings

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Directors appointed to the new National Art School Board

Thursday 21 May 2009

The Premier and Minister for the Arts, Nathan Rees today announced the appointment of six directors who will form the board of the newly-independent National Art School.

Mr Rees made the announcement during the school’s annual graduation ceremony where he also presented a National Art School Fellowship to one of Australia’s best-known sculptors, Bert Flugelman, himself a graduate 60 years ago.

“This is a historic day for the National Art School which fought for and has achieved independence – you have new leadership, a new structure and a future that is assured.

“The members of the board, approved by the NSW Cabinet this week, have enormous knowledge and experience in arts, finance, education and heritage.

“The chair will be one of the State’s most gifted and experienced cultural leaders, Peter Watts AM, who for 27 years was the director of the Historic Houses Trust of NSW.

“Joining him will be will be Mark Tedeschi QC, Sandra Yates AO, Hon. John Aquilina MP, the Director General of the Department of Arts, Sport and Recreation Carol Mills and Mr Peter Riordan, the Deputy Director General of the Department of Education and Training.

“One of the board’s earliest tasks will be guiding the school in its transition with the help of a strong business plan,” he added.

The Minister for Education and Training, Ms Verity Firth, said the government had consulted widely to develop the best possible operating model for the National Art School.

“In January, I was pleased to announce the School’s new director, Professor Anita Taylor, who commenced at the school in May.

“This highly skilled and experienced board will help the director to lead the School through this new phase of its history,” said Ms Firth.

The three year appointments take effect from 1 June 2009.

Presenting the fellowship to Mr Flugelman, the Premier said Mr Flugelman had made an enormous contribution to the visual arts in Australia and had been a great teacher and mentor to young sculptors. He had also shown unwavering support for the National Art School.

The National Arts School operates from the former Old Darlinghurst Gaol and uses a unique atelier or studio method of training, with teachers who are practising artists.

Under the new arrangement, the National Arts School is no longer overseen by the NSW Department of Education and Training.

Media: Vivienne Skinner 02 9228 5239, 0411 206 224

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

National Art School Welcomes New Director, Professor Anita Taylor

Following the recent announcement of her appointment by the NSW Minister for Education and Training, The Hon Verity Firth MP, Professor Anita Taylor has arrived in Sydney to take up her new role as National Art School Director.

An experienced and highly regarded artist, academic and former Dean of Wimbledon College of Art, London, Anita Taylor comes to the National Art School from her most recent appointment as the Director of The Centre for Drawing at the University of Arts London. Anita has exhibited and taught extensively both in the UK and internationally and in 2005 was elected an Academician of the Royal West of England Academy (RWA), and was recently an appointed member of the Art & Design Panel for the UK Research Assessment Exercise (RAE2008).

Anita is well known to many in the National Art School community, following her visit as Artist in Residence in 2004, and for her instrumental role in the National Art School’s partnership with The Centre for Drawing in 2007 to present Drawing Breath a survey exhibition and symposium hosted by the National Art School Gallery, which documented a decade of the annual Jerwood Drawing Prize - the most prestigious award for contemporary drawing in the UK - of which she is the founding Director.

This wealth of experience, coupled with her sustained belief in the vital role of drawing in contemporary art practice and art education suggest both a deep respect for the greatest traditions of the National Art School and perhaps of equal importance, a similarly great enthusiasm for the future of the School.

"The National Art School has a long and distinguished history,
and I am delightedto have been appointed to lead this exceptional
institution at this particular moment in time. The challenges and
opportunities afforded by our new model of operation as an
independent entity herald an exciting new era in which we can
confidently enhance and develop our unique position in art
education in Australia and in an international context."

Anita Taylor will present a lecture exploring the role of drawing in her practice as an artist as part of the NAS Weekly Forum lecture program on Wednesday, 27 May 2009 at 1.00 PM in the Cell Block Theatre at the National Art School. Attendance is free and members of the public are welcome to attend.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Australian Ceramics Triennale comes to NAS

The Australian Ceramics Triennale will be held 16-20 July. The majority of the event will be held at the NAS campus with exhibitions and activities also at COFA, SCA and The Manly Museum and Art Gallery.

To view speakers, papers, program, exhibitions and activities associated with this event please visit the website

In tandem with this major event, the NAS Gallery will host two ceramics exhibitions - LINK: Korean Australian Ceramics Exchange Project and Alan Peascod: influences and dialogue. Both exhibitions run 8 July - 15 August 2009.

LINK is the culmination of an exchange between the National Art School Ceramics Department and Kongju National University, Seoul, and features artists from Australia and Korea.

Alan Peascod's exhibition is an investigation of traditions and techniques, creative interaction and influence over three decades, centring on Alan Peascod’s vast, stylistically varied and technologically brilliant career. Also on display are ceramics by Elizabeth Charles, Simone Fraser, John Kuczwal and Graham Oldroyd, each of whom worked with and were influenced by Alan Peascod.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

NAS graduate wins 2009 Archibald Prize

Guy Maestri has won the 2009 Archibald Prize with his painting of Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupinguoil (on linen – 200cm x 168cm). Guy was inspired to use Gurrumul as his subject having seen him perform live last year on New Year's Eve, which was "truly an unforgettable experience."

The opportunity to meet with Gurrumul was limited - 40 minutes at Sydney airport before he flew to the US, during which time Guy sketched and studied him closely. The painting was completed after a month's work, with Guy listening intently to Gurrumul's music most of the time.

Born in Mudgee, NSW in 1974, Maestri completed a Bachelor of Fine Art (Hons) in painting at the National Art School in 2003. He has had solo exhibitions at the Tim Olsen Gallery and was a finalist in the 2007 and 2008 Dobell Drawing Prize.

Peter Hanley, currently a second year student here at the School, is also a finalist in this year's Archibald.

Congratulations to both!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Recent NAS graduates exhibit at Australian Galleries

Recent graduates Lauren Murphy and Yori Price, (who both studied printmaking), received the 2007 Australian Galleries Exhibition Award. The fruits of their labour will be on exhibition from Thursday, 19 February to 8 March 2009. Still Lives - Australian Galleries National Art School Award Exhibition will be opened at 6pm on 19 February by the National Art School's Acting Director, Simon Cooper. All are welcome.

Australian Galleries Glenmore Road, 24 Glenmore Road, Paddington NSW 2021. 10am-6pm Mon-Sat, 12pm-5pm Sunday.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Future of National Art School secured

The NSW Minister for Education and Training, the Hon Verity Firth MP, has announced that the School is now an independent institution, and will remain at the historic Darlinghurst Gaol site.

The School will be registered as a public company, with a board of directors and the Ministers for Arts and Education as shareholders.

Ms Firth said “This unique institution deserves the opportunity to stand on its own feet and to plan confidently for its future, and this does just that.”

The Minister also announced the appointment of a new Director for the School, Professor Anita Taylor. Professor Taylor is currently Director of the Centre for Drawing at the University of Arts, London. She will take up her appointment shortly.

Link to Minister’s Media Statement: (pdf)

Link to SMH article:

Link to ABC News:

National Art School Thanks Sydney Harbour Foreshore Trust

Bernard Ollis, Director, and Lynne Eastaway, Head of Drawing, present a drawing to thank the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Trust for their support of the National Art School's Drawing Week, held at the start of the academic year on Cockatoo Island.