New art prize taps into creative talent

Lifestyle Communities' Kaye Hennessy wins inaugural Simpson Art Prize

FROM THE ART: People's Choice winner Kay Hennessy from Lifestyle Ocean Grove with one of her winning artworks. Photo: Sharon Walker

FROM THE ART: People's Choice winner Kay Hennessy from Lifestyle Ocean Grove with one of her winning artworks. Photo: Sharon Walker


Art competition unearths artistic talents of more than 3500 Lifestyle Communities residents.


THE creative talents of Victoria's talented over-50's community went on display last week at the inaugural Simpson Arts Prize.

The art competition, hosted by retirement living provider Lifestyle Communities, was held at the Melbourne Pavilion in Kensington.

It showcased the skills of Lifestyle Communities' homeowners across fine art, photography, woodwork, ceramics, needlework, paper craft, sculpture, quilting and videography.

The winner of the People's Choice Award - the Simpson Arts Prize - was Kaye Hennessy of Lifestyle Ocean Grove for her ceramics artwork titled Beneath the Surface.

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Each winner across the 10 categories was awarded a cheque for $1000 and the event's judging panel included Channel Nine personality Livinia Nixon, Lifestyle Communities Managing Director James Kelly and art and craft expert Ramona Barry.

The prize is named after Warren and Pauline Simpson - the first homeowners to move into a Lifestyle Community in 2005.

Lifestyle Shepparton homeowner Marcia Greig entered the competition with several friends in her community. Their art piece, Barrell of Laugh, was created in the community's art shed and according to Marcia, it was the journey to the final piece that was the most rewarding.

"In that art room people talk and laugh and any pressures they have in life with ill health or any issues disappear", she said.

Lifestyle Communities' Managing Director James Kelly said the competition is a great way to celebrate and unearth the artistic talents of the 3500 homeowners who live in their communities.

"As we get older, our lived experience is greater and to be able to tap into this through creative expression is just such a fantastic opportunity," he said.

"We have been overwhelmed by the interest from our homeowners wanting to take part in this new wellness initiative and have a platform to showcase their hidden talents to the wider community."

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