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Art of sharing a journey

For more than 15 years, the SALA Festival has celebrated and promoted the diverse talents of South Australian Living Artists. In 2010, South Australian aged care provider, ACH Group, held its inaugural exhibition at Milpara with 30 pieces of art including paintings and mosaics made by the residents.
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ACH Group customer, Barbara Coleman, right, with ACH Group worker, Louise Healy, have been working with other staff, customers and volunteers, in the organisation's SALA exhibitions.

Since then, the talents of ACH Group’s community members have grown to such an extent that six venues will be exhibiting this year.

The theme for the exhibition is “Journeys: pride in how far you have come and faith in how far you can go” and has inspired ACH Group’s customers to tell their life stories through art.

The exhibition, at ACH Group’s office in Mile End, received 90 submissions of artwork, with 35 being selected. Each of the other five venues will feature 30 pieces of art.

An artists’ forum will be held during the opening event at Mile End on 15 August.

According to ACH Group’s Lenore de la Perrelle, the arts play an important role in the lives of older people.

“Older artists tell us that art provides a real satisfaction. They forget time, any concerns and focus on letting their creativity take over,” she said.

“Being able to learn something new also gives older people the thrill of accomplishment and a sense of delight at what is possible with the support of others. They share ideas and get help from an artist who shows techniques and encourages them.

“For those who have been involved in the arts, SALA offers an opportunity to continue the interest and to have a goal to work towards.

“For those who have never painted or made art, this provides the opportunity to learn something new, to focus on a creative outlet.”

ACH Group will present at six exhibition venues:

  • Highercombe Residential – 7-11 Sirius Avenue, Hope Valley
  • McLaren Community Club – 177 Main Road, McLaren Vale
  • Murray Bridge Community – 108 Swanport Road, Murray Bridge
  • Mile End – 22 Henley Beach Rd, Mile End
  • Milpara Residential – 147 St Bernards Rd, Rostrevor
  • Unitarian Hall – 99 Osmond Terrace, Norwood

SALA runs from 1 to 24 of August. Visit the ACH Group website for individual venue opening hours.

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