SALA Festival begins today

Image credit: Daniel Marks
The South Australian Living Artists (SALA) Festival begins today and turns our state into one giant art gallery.

Winter heralds the much-anticipated arrival of the South Australian Living Artists (SALA) Festival, now celebrating its 26th anniversary. Throughout the entire month of August, SALA Festival will showcase an impressive lineup of talent, welcoming a staggering 10,915 artists and hosting 697 exhibitions. From Adelaide to regional South Australia, venues will come alive with artistic expressions as SALA exhibitions populate every corner, providing a rich and diverse cultural experience for all to enjoy.

Lord Mayors Tour

SALA is one of the state’s key cultural events and the largest community-based open-access visual arts festival in Australia. Exhibitions can be discovered in local neighbourhoods, community spaces, galleries, wineries, cafes, retirement villages, libraries and local businesses with events from Port Adelaide to Port Pirie, Kilkenny to Kangaroo Island, Fullarton to the Flinders Ranges! 

SALA is proud to be the country’s largest and most inclusive visual arts festival featuring work by emerging, established and internationally recognised artists, but also those just discovering their inner creative and perhaps exhibiting for the first time. 

Acting CEO of SALA, Bridget Alfred says, “August is the perfect month for SA to turn into one large Gallery! With 10,915 visual artists exhibiting across the entire state in cafes, galleries, bars, bookshops and other surprising locations, you can’t help but be part of SALA Festival.

The SALA Hub is back in action at the historic Queens Theatre, with workshops, the famous Drawing Marathon and Slide Night, it’s welcoming, inclusive and a once-a-year opportunity to learn new skills or polish some old ones, there’s an artist in each of us!”

Enjoy this month-long celebration of local art throughout the state this August!

SALA Festival Highlights

Shop SALA 

A new not-for-profit platform celebrating and supporting SA living artists. A digital platform, creating new opportunities for artists, where you can discover local artists and buy their art direct. Likewise, for the first time you’ll be able to scan a code next to work you love on exhibit and be directed to Shop SALA to learn more about the artist and buy artwork easily from the website.

The Drawing Marathon with Christopher Orchard


Aug 3 – Aug 12 

Queens Theatre, Adelaide

Featuring, SALA Slide Night a night of fun and frivolity, where you can hear from SA artists about their art, interests, or something else entirely. Far from your grandma’s slide night, this event is a fast-paced snapshot into what SA contemporary artists are thinking about. Also The Drawing Marathon, led by Christopher Orchard, a five-day drawing intensive presented by SALA Festival and Adelaide Central School of Art. Other SALA workshops will take place in the Hub, see the SALA website and guide for more details. Closing night the SALA Finissage is hosted at the Hub where award winners will be announced.

Open Studio Weekend

SA artists generously open their studios to the public on 5 and 6 August as part of the SALA Festival Open Studios Weekend. It’s a great opportunity for a behind-the-scenes experience, to meet local artists and gain an insight into their creative process, whether they are part of a group studio or working from a home-studio. There are additional open studios throughout the festival in a number of regions. Check out the SALA Program to find out which studios are open near you.

Art Tours

Hear from the expert tour guides as they walk you through a selection of exhibitions in the city of Adelaide, including the SALA Art Tour in Mandarin led by artist Shirley Wu and the Local and Contemporary Art Tour with Dr Melanie Cooper. Explore the city’s street art with Leah Grant and join Jenna Pippet and her Weimaraner Zelda as you meander the city streets on the Dog Friendly Art Tour. Tikari Rigney will also lead a tour of SALA exhibitions taking place in Tarntanya (Adelaide) featuring diverse work from First Nations artists.

First Nations Art Tour, photo credit: Thomas Readett

Artist Studio Bus Tours

This year SALA has introduced the Artist Studio Bus Tours with artist Oakey taking you behind the scenes at some of the city’s East Side studios, where you will hear from practicing artists and have the opportunity to explore their studios. Artist Ida Sophia will host the Westside Bus Tour, an exciting exploration of galleries and studios in Bowden and Hindmarsh.

SALA Art Cars 

These will be roaming the streets of Adelaide during this year’s festival, generously provided by Jarvis Skoda and wrapped in artwork by emerging artists Crista Bradshaw and Michael Carney. 

  • Crista Bradshaw – Crista works with forms of expanded painting, sculpture and installation, investigating modes of representation that showcase the ways in which Indigenous and Australian art has evolved.
  • Michael Carney – Michael is an interdisciplinary artist found most often working with paint, clay, digital and virtual reality mediums.

Centennial Park

This outdoor exhibition combines the park’s permanent collection of sculptures and a selection of temporary works by SA artists that have been hand-picked and installed just for SALA Festival. Visit the Wildflowers café for a hot beverage, grab a map of the exhibition and wander the lush grounds at your own pace.

When planning your SALA diary for August make sure to download the free SALA app.

SALA Festival

1 – 31 Aug, 2023


  • Staff Writer

    Made up of a small, tight knit team of writers and contributors who are passionate about all things FIFTY+ and the New Age. We love Adelaide and wider South Australia and sharing with you all of the l...


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