06 October 2016

Samstag legacy book coverThe Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art is celebrating a quarter century of Samstag Scholarships and the University of South Australia’s 25th anniversary year, with the launch of a major publication and exhibition of the Museum’s namesake artists and an exhibition showcasing work by selected Samstag Scholarship recipients.

The Samstag Legacy: An Artist’s Bequest is a scholarly publication of American artist Gordon Samstag and his wife Anne, detailing their lives and careers, including their 16 year period of living and working in Australia, including Gordon Samstag’s period of working at the South Australian School of Art.

The publication, co-authored by Ross Wolfe and Dr Leah Rosson DeLong, highlights the Samstags’ cultural bequest to arts in Australia, enabling Australian visual artists to develop their skills and abilities internationally through the Anne and Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarships.

More than 130 scholarships have been awarded through UniSA since the programme was established in 1991.

Quicksilver: 25 Years of Samstag Scholarships is the title of one of the exhibitions being launched to coincide with the publication, reflecting the impact of those scholarships on the trajectory of contemporary Australian art, highlighting works by scholars including Mikala Dwyer, Nicholas Folland, Shaun Gladwell, Christian Lock, Nike Savvas and Linda Tegg.

The second exhibition: Meet the Samstags: Artists and Benefactors showcases the artistic talents of Anne and Gordon Samstag and many treasures from the Samstag Legacy Research Archive.

Erica Green, Director of the Anne & Gordon Samstag Museum of Art, says the Samstags left few clues for history’s gaze, with little known about their time spent in Australia, until publication of this ground-breaking book.

“In Australia they effectively concealed themselves, conducting their lives both privately and professionally with such social reserve and ordinariness that few friends or colleagues gleaned much if anything about their surprisingly rich family histories,” Erica Green says.

“After 25 years Anne and Gordon’s historic bequest still ranks as one of the very great bequests to visual arts education in Australia. We hope that our book pays worthy tribute to them as people and benefactors and to their historic legacy.”

Both exhibitions are open at the Samstag Museum on October 14 and will continue to December 9. Admission is free and opening hours are Tuesday to Friday 11am to 5pm, Saturday 2pm-5pm.

Co-authors of The Samstag Legacy: An Artist’s Bequest, Ross Wolfe and Dr Leah Rosson DeLong, will be appearing in conversation, talking about the Samstags, at the Samstag Museum of Art from 3-4pm on October 15. Registrations to attend this event should be made by October 7: samstagmusuem@unisa.edu.au or on 08 8302 0870.

Media Contacts: Will Venn office (08) 8302 0096 email will.venn @unisa.edu.au mobile 0401 366054

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