2022 2020 2018 2016

31 artists

S.A. Adair

About the work

Ventilate draws on the strong presence of nature found around Lake Burley Griffin and reimagines it in a gallery setting, raising questions of land use and value amidst rapid urban development.

Carbonised trees penetrate the space – their intrusion or assimilation a form of disruption, raising the question – does landscape dominate architecture or is human intervention dominating the landscape? In Griffin’s ‘garden city’ the landscape is of equal importance to the buildings upon it. Is this still being honoured in the current pattern of urban growth?

Ventilate means to ‘refresh’ but also to ‘vent’. With the use of red to impart a sense of urgency and rebellion, it also speaks of a scarring of the land. The patterns suggest waves of movement, operating as a metaphor for change – be that in ideas, perceptions or the status quo.

Photo, the artist

About the artist

S.A. Adair works across disciplines, incorporating sculpture, installation, drawing and printmaking in her practice. Through explorations of the deconstruction, elimination and reconstruction of material and form, Adair draws on processes of abstraction to create organic constructs that hint at the human matrix and experience. Her current installation work responds to the spaces we inhabit by exploring the physical, emotional and psychological undercurrents of personal engagement.

Adair attained a Bachelor of Fine Arts from UNSW Art and Design and a Bachelor of Visual Arts (honours) from the School of Art, ANU. Adair has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions locally and interstate including; Sculpture by the Sea (2009, 2017), Strand Ephemera, Townsville and most recently her site-specific work ‘Encasement’ at Canberra Museum and Gallery (Enlighten, 2018).

Adair has received several grants and awards including; an Australia Council Artstart Grant, The Goulburn Art Prize, the North Sydney Art Prize Emerging Artist Award and more recently the Perrier-Jouet and University of New South Wales sponsorship awards for her participation in Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi.


  • Ventilate
  • 2018
  • Gravel, paint, carbonised wood, aluminium
  • Sculpture