"Villa Maria's James O'Brien offers 'a fresh view of"
MEDIA RELEASE Marlene McIntyre Communications Advisor T (03) 9855 7729 F (03) 9855 7890 E email@example.com For immediate release 5 December 2008 Villa Maria’s James O’Brien offers ‘a fresh view of familiar things’ in his Summer Break exhibition James O’Brien, as recognised for his work with children with disabilities at Villa Maria as he is for his impressive brushwork, will open a new exhibition, Summer Break, at Point Lonsdale Surf Life Saving Club, 9-11 January 2009. Portrayed as ‘a fresh view of familiar things’, the paintings celebrate summer and the heat, the beach and the brilliant light of the sun on water to evoke a world we all know from childhood. Even though the settings are distinctly those of Point Lonsdale and Queenscliff, the impressions and the feelings generated in these pictures are universal. Local viewers will delight in recognising particular places and experiences; strangers will feel that they too know these scenes. James is a part time school teacher at Villa Maria’s St Paul’s College in Kew that offers Early Childhood Intervention Services, a bridging program and a comprehensive educational program for students aged 5 to 18 years with disabilities (see www.villamaria.com.au ). “We have a well-established sensory art program at St Paul’s and my students never cease to inspire me with their spontaneous and uplifting approach to self-expression,” says James. James’ paintings have wide appeal and show lively form. Two paintings entitled Effervescence show three girls rushing into the water in a flurry of spray. Light so brilliant that it is almost white breaks the water into sparkling surfaces and the girls run through this, unimpeded and free. The world James depicts is both, idyllic and real, full of a happiness that is reflected in the clear colours of his palette. James has entered paintings for the Archibald Prize in past years featuring the late Archbishop Sir Frank Little, the cricket legend David Boon and Australian operatic tenor and composer David Hobson. He intends entering a painting in next year’s contest. MORE Villa Maria’s James O’Brien offers ‘a fresh view of familiar things’ in his Summer Break exhibition ADD 1 - “My subject for next year’s Archibald Prize is Clarko, a former resident of Kew Cottages for 40 years,” says James. “He has had his fair share of ‘hard knocks’ but he is now lauded as one of the successes of deinstitutionalisation.” “These days Clarko is a member of the Choir of Hard Knocks and has performed at countless venues including the Sydney Opera House,” says James. “He has met a raft of famous Australians, including Prime Minister Rudd on several occasions.” The Summer Break exhibition will feature at the Point Lonsdale Surf Life Saving Club, Corner Buckley’s and Ocean Road Point Lonsdale from January 9 to 11, 2009. For more information, contact James O’Brien on 0407 879 311 or visit www.jamesobrienart.com.au. Villa Maria is a values–based organisation providing quality services and life enhancing opportunities for older people and people with a disability. From humble beginnings as the Catholic Braille Writers Association in 1907, Villa Maria has grown to become one of Victoria’s largest providers of disability, education and senior services, with more than 60 programs supporting 5,000 people across Victoria. For more information on Villa Maria’s services contact 9855 7600. Media enquiries: Contact Marlene McIntyre on 9855 7729. ENDS