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.