Trophy Dreams

Trophy Dreams was a multi-artform interactive exhibition by artists from Studio A, Sydney's leading studio for artists living with intellectual disabilities. The exhibition included new works specially commissioned for UNSW.

30 May - 30 August 2022

Level 5 Main Library

Victoria Atkinson
Mathew Calandra
Emily Cockford
Annette Galstaun
Jaycee Kim
Catherine McGuiness
Meagan Pelham
Damian Showyin
Greg Sindel


Studio A
UNSW Art Collection

UNSW Library and UNSW Art Collection partnered with Studio A, Australia’s leading art studio for artists living with intellectual disabilities to present Trophy Dreams, a multi-artform interactive experience that featured a new artwork specially commissioned for UNSW. Visitors were invited to try on Emily Crockford, Jaycee Kim and Victoria Atkinson's decorated graduation gowns and consider the artists' perspectives on the meaning of universities, test their putting skills with Annette Galstaun's spiritual mini-golf experience, and enjoy works by the talented Studio A artists in the University's art collection. Amongst this joyful creativity serious subjects were addressed ranging from our relationship with the spirit world to the accessibility of tertiary education.

This project was a collaboration between the UNSW Library and UNSW Art Collection in partnership with Studio A.

Top image: Annette Galstaun, Graduation Gown (detail) 2022. Courtesy of the artist and Studio A.

Annette Galstaun and Chistopher Haysom, Still from Dance of the angel fairy 2021, Single channel video loop with audio. Courtesy of the Artist and Studio A.

About Studio A

Studio A is a supported studio and powerhouse artist collective based in Sydney that challenges disability inclusion within contemporary art. Working across painting, sculpture, new media and performance, Studio A artists regularly participate in major exhibitions including the Archibald Prize and The National, collaborate with other creatives including Romance Was Born fashion house, and undertake high-profile projects with institutions such as the Art Gallery of New South Wales and the Museum of Contemporary Art.

Studio A tackles the barriers that artists living with intellectual disability face in accessing conventional education, professional development pathways and opportunities needed to be successful and renowned visual artists. The enterprise paves professional pathways for such artists so that they can achieve their artistic and economic aspirations and reduces stigma associated with people with disability.

Emily Crockford, The Flying Fox and the Goanna in Patterned Leaves 2021, acrylic on canvas 52.5 x 180 cm. Courtesy of the Artist and Studio A.
Purchased 2021, UNSW Art Collection. P 2021/1239.

Image gallery

Events from this exhibition

Opening event

Trophy Dreams was opened by Chair of Studio A Board Shane Simpson AM, (Hon.DUniv, UNSW). Additional speeches were performed by Martin Borchert, University Librarian; Niel Morris, Director Wellbeing, Student Life; and Gabrielle Mordy, CEO and Artistic Director of Studio A alongside Studio A artists.

Event was held on Thursday, 9 June 2022.

Visual Communication and Inclusive Practice Symposium

This half-day symposium was co-hosted by the UNSW Disability Innovation Institute and featured Gabrielle Mordy, CEO and Artistic Director of Studio A and Studio A artist Greg Sindel, along with leading UNSW researchers. This symposium was aimed at anyone working in the area of disability inclusion and expanded the conversation around using visual strategies to include, engage and collaborate with people with disability.

Event was held on Friday, 15 July 2022.