The Alexandrina community has payed tribute to Annabelle Collett, Clayton Bay resident and renowned South Australian artist, who passed away on Monday 1 April 2019.
A much loved and admired member of her local community, Annabelle became embedded in Clayton Bay after moving into the area in 2009. Local celebrations and projects began to take on a decidedly more colourful appearance, as she brought her creative sensibility to everything she became involved with.
Annabelle brought people together through each artistic endeavour, whether it was public art projects, exhibitions or festivals.
That experience coupled with a natural passion and enthusiasm for creative projects, and a lengthy professional career in fashion and contemporary art, gave rise to Colouring Clayton. This ongoing project brings public art projects to Clayton Bay which have changed the landscape and instilled a great sense of pride, identity and uniqueness of place for local residents.
She was Co-Artistic Director with Barbary O'Brien of the Surf Art Festival at Middleton in 2014 which also won Alexandrina Council's Australia Day Award for 'Event of the Year'.
Annabelle curated numerous exhibitions in Signal Point Gallery from 2012 onwards, and the summer exhibitions often drew comments from exclamations of amazement from visitors.
Young artists were mentored, long practising artists were honoured and graduates invited into their first exhibitions. Annabelle advocated for professional artists at every opportunity and had a remarkable ability to bring out the best in those she worked alongside. Signal Point Gallery exploded with vitality, colour, ideas and experimentation when she manifested her vision in the space. Mayor Keith Parkes acknowledged Annabelle's important contribution to Alexandrina's arts and culture scene.
"Annabelle was an agent for change. At a time that Alexandrina was becoming a regional centre of culture she was a distinctive and integral part of that conversation and naturally fired our local imagination," he said.
Council Arts and Cultural Development Officer, Leah Grace, said, "Annabelle was a pure delight to work with; she raised the bar every time, never repeating."
"She was always creating a fresh engaging, authentic and thoroughly dynamic exhibition or project. To work with Annabelle was to become friends with her warm, creative, engaging, funny, intelligent and generous personality."