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Graduate Exhibition Committee


We would like to welcome you to the 2023 University of South Australia, Bachelor of Contemporary Art, and Master of Design (Contemporary Art) Graduate Exhibition: Coalesce.

Coalesce means “to come together” and  “to unite”.  Naming our exhibition Coalesce is symbolic of the diverse range of artists in our cohort who have converged at this place and time to illustrate their commitment and dedication to their artistic practice and to each other.

As you walk through the exhibition spaces, the culmination of years of research, meticulous refinement, and immense effort from every student becomes evident. Each piece on display is a testament to the commitment and dedication invested in its creation, stemming from thorough exploration within the artists chosen field and exemplifies the extensive creative energy inherent in contemporary art.

The University of South Australia Creative staff and Graduate Exhibition Committee are delighted to present this Exhibition of the Graduating cohort of 2023 and extend our sincerest aspiration for success to the students in their future endeavours.

Katey Smoker, President

Kate Shierlaw, Co-President &Treasurer

Ariella Napoli, Secretary

Isla Hannan Francis, Vice President (Undergraduate)/Social Media Manager

Luna Chan, Vice President (Masters)

Aidan Hughes, Creative Design Director

Wee Shiang Tay, Committee Member

Natalie Koch, Committee Member

Isabel Pratt, Committee Member

Chrissie McCormick, Committee Member

Tamara Timko, Committee Member

Jessica McCarthy, Committee Member

Stephen Atkinson, Program Director, Bachelor of Contemporary Art


A little less than three years ago or much more than three years, let’s just say somewhere between two years nine months and twelve years six months, the students whose work is presented in these exhibitions and commended to you here arrived on our threshold because it was what they had always wanted to do, to study art and be artists in whatever form that takes, because artists rule, or break the rules and invent new ones, or are the new argonauts, or because they wanted to be art teachers, or wanted to be artists with an art teaching qualification to fall back on, or were wanting to pursue the things that made them feel better, or made the world better, or who wanted to return at last to a passion that the circumstances of life had steered them away from, or who had woken up one morning and realised with some surprise that they’d been thinking like an artist all their lives, or who had thought that studying art would be fun and easy, soon discovering that Art is often not fun or easy but learning to embrace its challenges, or who had enrolled in something else because they had thought, or were told, that the other thing would be better for them but then deciding they would rather be here after all, because this was really what they’d wanted all along, or because they’d enrolled in a course here and decided to stay, or had enrolled here first, then transferred to a different degree, but then came back here again because the other degree wasn’t quite what they wanted either and they would have liked to do the best bits of both but on balance here was more freeing than there, or because one day a penny dropped and they loved the sound it made, or because they fell head over heels with a material or a process or an idea and wanted to follow it all the way down the rabbit hole, or because all or some of the lecturers and tutors and studio instructors and technical officers, were friendly and supportive, or challenging, or cool, or knowledgeable, or funny, or strange, or strangely annoying, or just human enough to keep them here even when they had their doubts, so much so that now some of those students want to go on to further study, or volunteer or take up a position or residency with a local art institution or organisation or business or studio or gallery, or are ready to take the plunge into the life of an artist, or art teacher or art worker, setting up a studio, making work, making connections, applying for grants and commissions, and to keep on learning because learning never stops, while others for now are just looking forward to a break, but not before joining with all the others described here, all or any of whom could be them, to celebrate their achievements and fix their eyes on the future beyond, which is now in much safer hands than before.


Stephen Atkinson,
Program Director,
Bachelor of Contemporary Art

Peter Walker, Program Director, Master of Design (Contemporary Art)


The four graduating artists exhibiting their work in Liverpool Street Gallery share critical observations of contemporary life…

​Fragments of recollections stained, weathered, and torn.

Anxiety befriended, demystified, and accepted.

Making coffee becomes a meditative moment immersed in smell, sound, and contemplation.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has arrived challenging our presence in familiar landscapes.​

Through explorations into the realms of memory, anxiety, time, and technology, the artists collectively pose existential questions: What does it mean to be alive? Where have we come from? Where are we heading?

Each of the artists has considered the things that matter to them personally, focussing on ideas that have informed their view of the world and will continue to shape their futures. Learning new techniques and experimenting with material processes have been essential ingredients of the work as it evolved over the course of their studies. The final outcomes not only represent the editing and critical resolution of the work, but also the many tests, successes, failures, and dead ends that are all part of the creative journey. Each artist has taken the initiative exploring new territories and embracing risks in the making of the showcased work.

The Master of Design (Contemporary Art) Program has a unique structure, taking a multi-disciplinary approach to learning that encourages interaction between artists and designers across a range of specialist areas including art, interior architecture, sustainable design, and communication design. The cross flow of information, feedback and discussion provides opportunities to enrich and expand individual practice.


Each of the artists has fully immersed themselves in this environment, actively engaging in broader discussions about creative practice.

On behalf of the Master of Design Program, I would like to offer a sincere congratulations on the thoughtful work exhibited. Thank you for the generous contribution you have all made to the program and good luck in your future creative endeavours.​

Peter Walker

Program Director

Master of Design (Contemporary Art)

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