St Kevin’s Art Show is a non-acquisitive art prize and exhibition of contemporary art by emerging and established Australian artists.
Hosted by St Kevin’s College in Toorak, Melbourne, the Art Show has a long and proud history as one of the longest running exhibitions of its type in the country.
The St Kevin’s Art Show was established in 1971 by a St Kevin’s College parent, art lover and ‘‘artist of amateur greatness’’ Mrs Audrey Culliver. The exhibition was originally conceived to expose the work of tonal-realist landscape and still-life painters to a new audience, with the added benefit of being a fundraiser for the College. Over the years, the exhibition grew in both scale and ambition, exhibiting more than 600 artworks at its peak.
In 2017, the St Kevin’s Art Show was dramatically reshaped to place greater emphasis on a much smaller number of works by professional contemporary practices by emerging and early-mid career artists.
Each year toward the end of May, shortlisted artists are exhibited in a custom-designed temporary gallery space in the Smith Hall at the Heyington campus of St Kevin’s College, Melbourne. The exhibition aims to showcase the breadth of contemporary painting, printmaking, photography and mixed media work and attracts artists from around the country.
In addition to being an art prize, St Kevin’s Art Show is a fundraising exhibition, with all exhibited artworks offered for sale. Artists receive 75% of sales proceeds and the 25% sales commission contributes to a range of College and philanthropic projects. Since 2017, more than $60,000 has been directed to the St Kevin’s College Foundation, a foundation which provides bursaries and scholarships to boys who may not otherwise have the means to receive a St Kevin’s College education.