Artistic fingers on the pulse

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10 April 2024

In the news Public school life

Creative, thought provoking, and expressive pieces by young WA artists are on display at the State’s most recognised gallery.

The West Australian Pulse, an annual exhibition at the Art Gallery of Western Australia, celebrates the talents of Year 12 visual arts graduates.

The West Australian Pulse 2024. Installation view, The Art Gallery of Western Australia, 2024. Photo: Rift Photography. Artwork - Annika Carleton you're so vanitas 2023. Gloss varnish, powdered pigment, sequin and oil on canvas, 76 x 101 cm. Perth Modern School.

Now in its 32nd year, the showcase offers insight to the ‘pulse’ of young people who will influence, empower, and shape the world we live in.

Sixty works by students who graduated in 2023 were on display in this year’s exhibition, providing a window into young people’s private, social, and artistic concerns.

Themes explored in the artworks included mental health and social pressures, gender and culture, environmentalism, and technology.

Among those who have their work displayed is Perth Modern School graduate and Yawuru woman Millani Booth who painted her older sister Joliette.

Booth told STM her piece titled In the trees, she will live eternally celebrated Aboriginal history, her sister, and her own passions.

“All I’ve learnt about Australian and Indigenous history, and the environment, has come from my family so it’s something I really want to express in my art,” she said.

Willetton Senior High School graduate Hannah Raphael also took inspiration from her family for her painting titled Mother’s Garden, and felt proud to have her work featured in the showcase.

“They (my mother and grandmother) have always been a really important part of my life, I’ve always had that strong maternal connection with them,” she told STM.

“It’s amazing as this really feels like you’re being appreciated and your culture is being celebrated. I love that I’m able to share it with other people.”

The works were selected by a judging panel which included Department of Education principal consultant for visual arts Lisa Bowden, Art Gallery of Western Australia associate curator of contemporary art Bahar Sayed, and artist Yabini Kickett.

The exhibition runs until 6 October 2024.