Members of the ACH Group community have had more than 200 artworks on display in this year’s South Australian Living Arts Festival.
Held annually during August, the SALA Festival is an open-access visual arts event that celebrates the work of SA artists, regardless of age or experience.
The not-for-profit aged care and retirement living provider submitted a range of pieces from residents, staff, and volunteers including photographs, sculptures, collages, mosaics, and textiles.
Staff member Marie – who has worked at ACH for 22 years – submitted a digital collage called Mucha To Do About Nothing.
“I found images of my favourite things including relaxing on holidays, geometric shapes, colour hues, and works by artist Alphonse Mucha and created a digital collage by cropping the images and intersplicing the pieces,” she said.
For Rona – a resident of ACH’s Colton Court facility in McLaren Vale, a town south of Adelaide – art has been a lifelong passion. “Growing up in the west coast of South Australia, I was inspired by the natural landscape and would paint Australian scenes,” she said.
In adulthood, Rona – who has two art pieces exhibited in the SALA Festival – became an art teacher, a role she continues at Colton Court where she helps fellow residents learn various art techniques. “I just really enjoy looking at other people’s art, seeing how they improve and where their inspiration comes from.”
This is the 13th year that the ACH Group arts community has exhibited in SALA, said CEO Frank Weits. “And it is a favourite initiative for both experienced and budding artists to take part in.”
Throughout the year, ACH runs art programs across its residential care homes and retirement villages. “The classes provide an opportunity to meet new people and learn new skills or revitalise past ones,” said Mr Weits. “The benefits customers and residents can experience from engaging in art include relieving stress and anxiety, improving brain function and building self-esteem.”
The SALA Festival is held online and at various venues across SA and runs until 31 August.
Main image: ACH staff member Marie with her digital collage