The Helpmann Academy to award $112,000 to South Australia’s best emerging artists

Rebecca Hastings, The Eternal YouthsIn a first for South Australian emerging artists, The Helpmann Academy will present $112,000 worth of awards and opportunities to visual artists from a range of creative disciplines.

Now celebrating its 24th year, the Helpmann Academy is the only organisation of its kind in Australia to empower South Australia’s most promising emerging artists. Eighteen artists will be presented with awards and professional development opportunities over two nights this week at the Helpmann Academy Graduate Exhibition VIP Vernissage and Opening Night with the largest prizes being the British School at Rome Residency, valued at $50,000 ($25,000 each for 2 artists).

The artists are of all ages, from all over South Australia and this graduation exhibition represents an engaging overview of the most compelling art being produced by graduates, providing a glimpse into the future of South Australian contemporary art.

“The awards will make a huge impact on the careers of the recipients. The incredible support of our partners and donors is testament to the value that our community places on empowering emerging artists,” said Helpmann Academy CEO Jane McFarlane. “The awards provide opportunities to give these artists an important leg-up, whether its setting up a studio, buying equipment or simply providing time and space to create.”

“Through the 100 plus works and themes of climate change and sexuality are strong. The works in this exhibition will be snapped up, they demonstrate some of the most exciting new art being produced in South Australia.”

The Helpmann VIP Vernissage, to be held in the Drill Hall – Torrens Parade Ground, has gained a reputation for being a highlight of the Adelaide arts calendar, featuring a curated selection of South Australia’s most promising contemporary visual artists.

“This year’s showcase is set to be the most prestigious yet,” said McFarlane. “It is not surprising that The Helpmann Academy Graduate Exhibition has won Fringe Awards for Best Visual Arts Event.” This exhibition is an exclusive chance to expand your art collection and experience over 100 works of exceptional quality, imagination and technical skill, before the exhibition opens to the public.”

The Helpmann Academy Graduate Exhibition opens to the public on Friday 16 February and runs through to Sunday 11 March 2018. Entry is free. For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Rebecca Hastings, The Eternal Youths (The Fetish), 2017 (detail) – Oil on board 120 x 120cm – photo by James Field