Studio Arts Photography students had a morning to remember at the Bendigo Art Gallery today, when they attended the Undercurrents exhibition and met the artist, Peta Clancy.

Peta, a proud Bangerang woman, spoke to the students about her art practice, and in particular the process of creating the artworks for her exhibition that explores and responds to Australia’s denied history of massacres and violence against First Nations people.

Peta visited the massacre site on Dja Dja Wurrung Country over the space of a year, photographing, cutting and layering images, and re-photographing them on site to create the works for the exhibition.

Students were fascinated by the work and asked Peta some really insightful questions.

Following Peta’s session, students heard presentations from two recent VCE Arts graduates: former BSSC student Charlie Clark and St Columbas College graduate Elizabeth Fritsche.

Both gave invaluable advice about the process of creating their folios and the inspiration behind their final pieces.

Charlie gave some wonderful visual examples of the relationship between her influences and her art exploration, urging students to experiment.

“Put everything in your folio and don’t get hung up on aesthetics,” she said. “Make something you’re proud of.”

Elizabeth, who created a stunning umbrella and raincoat as her final artworks, encouraged students to treat life (and art) as an adventure.

“Choose a theme you’re passionate about and don’t stop looking for inspiration,” she said. “Keep refining and resolving ideas and make sure you keep up to date with your annotations.”

A big thank you to Peta, Charlie and Elizabeth for an amazing morning.

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