Artist’s Chronicle celebrates 30 years

Lyn DiCiero, publisher of the Artist’s Chronicle.

It’s hard to believe 30 years have passed since the first edition of the Artist’s Chronicle in 1991. The first issue was months in the planning, and only printed in black and white. Subsequent editions remained a black and white until advertising revenue could afford an upgrade to colour. It was a time before mobile phones, before computers were in common use, in an age when every part of the publication was carefully cut and pasted into place by hand onto a master copy for printing.

How did it start? Serendipity I say. A local government meeting to form an arts council was the clincher. Believing it was bound to be just a few people attending, I decided not to attend, but changed my mind at the last minute. To my surprise the room was packed with people, with most unfamiliar to me. I wondered why no one seemed to know the full picture of the visual arts. Frustrated by a lack of information and cohesion I planned to create a small publication to capture an overview of the visual arts community. It grew organically as more people heard about it and wanted their own copy.

Over three decades artists and galleries have come, gone, stayed and risen to unimaginable heights. The popularity of public art in Perth was unthinkable in 1991, with sculptors often considered a poor cousin to painters. When the City of Rockingham Castaways Sculpture Awards began more than a decade ago, the idea of moving sculptors away from toxic materials to using recycled materials was an uphill battle, whereas now it is common. And as our digital world expanded, artists embraced this and created in new media.

It’s been a privilege to watch art history unfold in Western Australia. I’m still excited by each new edition of the Artist’s Chronicle, and never cease to be amazed and interested in how the visual arts develops. Promoting art and artists, arts writing, knowledge gained in the process, and friendships formed over the decades has been an outstanding experience, and I look forward to building on this bank of memories. 

To celebrate our 30th year we will be gifting our collection of photographs to the State Library of WA for the benefit of current and future researchers. The collection includes portrait photos of artists, art events and personal photos. In future, we also hope to gift our recorded interviews to the Library to give voice to its Artist’s Chronicle collection of images held there.

In the meantime, I am humbled by congratulatory messages from across the art community, yet still wondering where those 30 years went – it has all gone too quickly! 

“In 1991 Lyn DiCiero, Editor, established the Artist’s Chronicle, which has since grown to be the longest running independent visual arts publication in Western Australia’s history. The Art Gallery of WA would like to congratulate Lyn and her team on thirty years of arts publishing, and in particular for her support of the Art Gallery of WA, her relationship with its staff and the many exhibitions and projects that she has profiled and helped to promote over the years.

On behalf of myself and the team here at the Gallery, we would like to wish you many more years of success and thank you for supporting the arts and artists in the West.”

Colin Walker, Art Gallery of WA Director

“The John Curtin Gallery would like to congratulate Lyn Di Ciero and her team on the thirtieth anniversary of Artist’s Chronicle.  

Artist’s Chronicle is a quality arts publication which has consistently  supported and encouraged the arts community and empowered the many artists who have been featured over the years. Artist’s Chronicle has also  been an excellent source of exclusive interviews, insightful reviews and thoughtful comment on the best of contemporary art in WA and an inspiration to its readers. We particularly appreciate your invaluable support in connecting us to the wider community and sharing our exhibition news and programs.

The entire team here at John Curtin Gallery wish you continued success and raise a glass to toast your significant milestone.”

Chris Malcolm, Director, John Curtin Gallery

“Warmest congratulations to Lyn DiCiero on 30 years editing the Artists Chronicle which she established in 1991. A remarkable achievement, which has given encouragement, exposure and promotion to vast numbers of Western Australian artists and galleries, including the Art Gallery of Western Australia.

Well done. What an outstanding contribution to our State. Thank you Lyn.”

Janet Holmes à Court AC

“The Western Australian arts community has been greatly impacted by Lyn Di Ciero since she launched the Artist’s Chronicle in 1991. Over the past two decades she has provided an invaluable commentary on the visual arts in this State, documenting its vibrancy and providing an insight into its continuing importance in the cultural life of all its citizens. Brava Lyn and thank you for your tireless work.”

Ted Snell AM CitWA

“Since 1991 Lyn DiCiero has actively driven the Artist’s Chronicle. While many art journals come and gone, this one must be commended for sailing through changing and challenging times and consistently providing a voice for, and insight into, the arts in Perth.

This is a moment to celebrate! We congratulate you on many years and look forward to many more to come.”

Laetitia Wilson, Curator and Gallery Manager, Holmes à Court Gallery

“Congratulations Lyn and Happy 30th anniversary! It is very encouraging that Artists Chronicle has survived the last three decades. As a small operator who recognises the commitment and resilience it needs to keep on top of the challenges we confront particularly in the arts, your achievement and value to the sector is immeasurable.”

Anna Kanaris, Artitja Fine Art Gallery

“Congratulations on thirty years Lyn DiCiero – what an achievement! Your magazine keeps artists and art lovers connected to the art world in Perth and beyond. You offer an essential service informing visual artists on artists, exhibitions, festivals and art news that matters.  Your editions are always timely, relevant and inclusive. Thank you so much for your time and energy.”

Annette Peterson, artist 

Artist Andrew Nicholls at the Art Gallery of WA for his exhibition Hyperkulturemia in 2018. Photo Lyn DiCiero. The image is one of many donated to the State Library of WA by the Artist’s Chronicle. Others include a 2012 photo of artist Abdul Abdullah, a 2011 image of the late Brian McKay and the 2018 protest against the removal of his work at Central Park, and a suite of images of Kimberley artists in Perth for the Art Gallery of WA’s 2019 show Desert, River, Sea.

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