2022 Foundation Annual Appeal

2022 Annual Appeal: Building representation in the Collection.

The State Art Collection is continually developing with important new acquisitions and commissions, offering insight into who we were, who we are today and who we aspire to be. Through the outstanding legacy of the TomorrowFund, our contemporary collection has grown significantly over the past decade.

This year, our focus is on historical and modern works and continuing to build on the representation of women artists within our holdings of work from these periods. With your support, the Gallery has the opportunity to acquire the work The charming ladies c1956 by senior Australian artist Helen Maudsley. This would be the first work by Maudsley to enter the Gallery’s collection and its acquisition will assist in addressing a critical gap of works by senior Australian women artists.

Acquiring this work is a step toward addressing gender imbalance across the historical and modern periods. We hope you consider supporting the acquisition of this work. Every contribution is greatly appreciated.


Related Information

Helen Maudsley The charming ladies c1956.
Helen Maudsley The charming ladies c1956. Watercolour and gouache on paper, 60 x 75 cm. ©️ The Artist. Image courtesy the artist and Niagara Galleries, Melbourne. Photographer: Mark Ashkanasy, Melbourne.


About the artist

Helen Maudsley b. 1927 Melbourne, Australia.

Helen Maudsley is a senior Australian artist whose work should be far better known than it is. During her seventy-year career, from her first solo exhibition in 1957 to her most recent in 2021, she has pursued and refined her artistic vision. Maudsley’s complex works have their genesis in the physical world around us, but she works with form and composition to write ‘essays’, which are intended to be read. Maudsley’s highly personalised motifs and complex compositions demand that the viewer spends time looking at the image. As she puts it, “we need to watch the associations that arise in our mind while looking and give the combinations of shapes the opportunity to act on our imagination.” The charming ladies was made early in Maudsley’s career and is one of a series of images in which she has abstracted the female form, retaining some figurative elements within its surrealist-inspired approach.

The work is a strong representation of Maudsley’s early practice and an excellent example of Australian abstraction.

Melissa Harpley
AGWA Curator of Historical Art and Manager Curatorial Affairs

Download the 2022 Annual Appeal Brochure



2022 Appeal Supporters

Thank you to these generous donors who have supported the 2022 AGWA Foundation Annual Appeal:

Adrienne Marshall
Beverley East
Bob Grieve
Bryan and Jan Rodgers
Corinne Barton
Carolyn McCleery
Claire Brittain
Gene Tilbrook and Anne Seghezzi
Gerie and Ole Hansen
IJ and J Williams
Jennie Fitzhardinge
Jim and Freda Irenic
John McKay
Louise and Eric Isaachsen
Marilyn Burton
Mi-Jeong Kim
Michael and Marie Hobbs
Peter Bird
Peter and Benita Dowding
Philip and Margaret Thompson

P and R Scott
Richard Stone
Rosalind Ruth M. Phelps
Roslyn Seale
Stuart Walters
Dr Walter Ong and Graeme Marshall
Wembley Gallery
Anonymous donors


AGWA is closed until 16 October for a final stage of redevelopment works. Details