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Celebration takes an artistic twist

Bunbury’s celebrations marking 40 years as a city have taken an artistic turn through a unique exhibition at Bunbury Regional Art Gallery.

It was October 1979 when Bunbury reached its status as a city and a number of displays and exhibitions have this month celebrated the momentous occasion.

The latest installation at the gallery displays items from the City’s Art Collection and is aptly named 40 Works – 40 Years.

The collection focuses on managing and preserving visual art which adds to the cultural life of the city.

The collection includes more than 900 artworks with an estimated total value of more than $2 million.

Gallery director Joanne Baitz said contemporary and historical works by Australian artists were acquired in all media, with a particular emphasis on artists living and working in the Bunbury and South West region and Indigenous artists living and working on Noongar Country.

“Other ways of expanding the art collection are by gifts and bequests from corporate as well as private donors,” Dr Baitz said.

“Apart from the significant first 22 works donated by West Australian philanthropist Claude Hotchin in 1948 which marked the beginning of the Art Collection, there have been many other significant donations over the years.”

The selection of artworks on display for the exhibition have been acquired in the years between 1979 and 2019.

“This body of work illustrates the rich diversity of styles and mediums represented in the art collection,” Dr Baitz said.

“It also serves as a survey of the many purchases, gifts and bequests that make this such a significant collection.”

The exhibition runs until November 24.

Bunbury Museum and Heritage Centre is also holding an exhibition with visitors given the chance to view items from the 1970s to 1980s, revealing what life was like in Bunbury 40 years ago.

There are also displays at Bunbury Visitor Centre, South West Sports Centre, the Bunbury Public Library and Bunbury City Council’s administration building.

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