Margaret Priest

An Artist's Life

11 Brown Street, East Perth WA 6004
Start Date
3 December, 2009
End Date
7 February, 2010

Who is Margaret Priest? If you don’t know the artist – you will certainly know her work.

Margaret Priest was one of the foremost figures in post-war art in Western Australia. Given Perth’s cultural isolation from mainstream Australian art in the early 1960s, she was the first sculptor to introduce modernist ideas and became an important link to contemporary European practice at that time. She played a prominent part in Perth’s aesthetic development between 1950 and 1980, creating an important body of work, much of it in high profile public positions throughout the city. Her Pioneer Woman is the centrepiece of the public space in Kings Park. The exhibition will include sculptures, associated drawings and photographs, coins, medallions and recent paintings.

Please join us at Holmes à Court Gallery for the opening of the exhibition and the launch of the book Margaret Priest: An Artist’s Life,written by Philippa O’Brien.

Architect, Geoffrey Summerhayes OAM will officially open the exhibition and launch the book.

Both artist and author will be present at the opening.

In her preface to the book Philippa O’Brien writes:

This is the story of an artist’s life – of how Margaret Priest came to be the artist she became – and how the artworks she made came into being. Much of her art was made for particular sites and places in Perth, the city that became her home after she moved from the other side of the world with the millions of people who migrated after the Second World War.

It is also the story of the City of Perth at a seminal time in its history. Margaret Priest arrived in Perth in 1951 as the city began to transform itself from the peaceful country town it had been, into the busy, modern city that it is today. She was a pioneer of the modern concept of art in public space, bringing together a sophisticated community dialogue of ideas, responsiveness to the site and to a sense of place, and an impeccable art practice. In the building boom that began as she arrived, she advocated the inclusion of art in public buildings and campaigned for the integration of art and architecture.


Exhibition Floortalk & Bus Tour of Public Artworks

Saturday/Sunday 5/6 December 10am – 12noon

Cost: $15 RSVP (08) 9218 4540, booking essential as places limited

Image: Margaret Priest, Fragment, 1960, driftwood, 99 x 25 x 29 cm, Collection of the artist

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no. 10 Gallery

During an exhibition period
Open: Tues – Sat, 11am – 5pm
Closed: Public Holidays

Email: [email protected]
Phone: +61 8 6217 2640
Address: 10 Douglas Street, Gooyaman | West Perth WA 6005

Vasse Felix Gallery

Open: Daily, 10am – 5pm
Closed: Good Friday, 13 Dec; Christmas Day, 25 Dec; and Boxing Day, 26 Dec.

Phone: +61 8 9756 5000
Address: Cnr Tom Cullity Dr & Caves Rd, Cowaramup WA 6284
Directions: Please click HERE for directions to Vasse Felix


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Holmes à Court Gallery
Janet Holmes à Court Collection

Dr. Laetitia Wilson
Curator & Gallery Manager
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Collection Coordinator
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PA to Janet Holmes à Court AC | Event Enquiries
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