From the depths of an edgy underground studio, 12 young people attending Mission Australia’s Creative Youth Initiatives Artworks! program have collectively spent more than 3,500 hours bringing more than 100 diverse and poignant artworks to fruition. The unique creations are set to go on display and will be for sale at a public exhibition at Paddington’s Kudos Gallery between Tuesday 22 November and Saturday 26 November.
The young artists aged between 16 and 25 regularly met at the underground art studio at Mission Australia Centre in Surry Hills for six months. The artworks include tender charcoal portraits, psychedelic abstract street art and anthropomorphic watercolours.
While undertaking studies with a TAFE outreach visual arts program and creating their artworks, the students also faced a range of complex challenges such as homelessness, mental health issues, substance abuse, social isolation, bullying, family breakdown and unemployment.
Mission Australia Program Manager, Diana Jazic explains the initiative encourages young people to harness their creativity as a medium and tool for change.
“The students used a wide range of media such as painting, drawing, printmaking and collage to create extraordinarily personal and creative artworks which explore aspects of each artists’ journey, experiences and interests. We reach out to young people and tap into their creativity in a free, safe and supportive environment to assist healing past wounds and equip them to make positive changes in their lives. Our focus is encouraging young people to see and harness their full potential; to recognise their talents and develop self-confidence and a sense of worth,” said Jazic.
She continued, “It’s not just a feel good project either, the evidence shows this initiative really works. We know that half of the young people who graduated in 2015 successfully entered further training or employment.”
The Artworks! exhibition is an annual event to celebrate the students’ creative achievements and outcomes.
Young people accessing Artworks! or the Sounds of the Streets music program at Mission Australia Centre Surry Hills’ Creative Youth Initiatives are referred from a range of services such as youth and community services, counsellors, juvenile justice, supported accommodation services, schools and TAFE. Young people can also refer themselves or can be referred by their families.
Opening night: Tuesday 22nd November 2016, 6-8pm. Exhibition continues until Saturday 26th November
Gallery hours: 11am-6pm Wednesday to Friday, 11am-4pm on Saturday
Location: Kudos Gallery 6 Napier Street, Paddington
WHEN: 22/11/2016 - 26/11/2016 (11:00 am - 6:00 pm)
WHERE: Kudos Gallery
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