Portrait sale for Noongar Songs in Schools project

Artist Joanna Capelle and George Walley with the portrait of Walley.
Artist Joanna Capelle and George Walley with the portrait of Walley.

A PORTRAIT of local identity George Walley was unveiled at Mandurah Art Gallery last week and will be sold to raise funds for a schools songs project.

Mundaring artist Joanna Capelle painted the portrait as a gift to the Madjitil Moorna Choir and its sale will raise money to extend the Noongar Songs in Schools project.

Walley has been a member and musical director of the choir since 2009 and has composed a number of songs the choir sings at public events.

The project started because teachers with no knowledge of Aboriginal languages wanted help by introducing songs and culture into the classroom.

Early this year, Madjitil Moorna produced a song book and CD resource for primary schools that stimulated an appetite for more Noongar cultural inclusion.

Teachers wanted Noongar-led music workshops in their schools and Madjitil Moorna wanted to share the singing of Noongar songs with massed choirs of children. That happened last Sunday at the choir’s 10th Kalamunda Zig Zag Festival.

Capelle has held more than 20 solo and many mixed exhibitions in Australia and is represented in private, public and corporate collections in Australia, the UK, US, Canada and Europe.

There is a $4500 reserve price on the painting.

The first bid at or above that will be a winner or the highest bid received before November 20.