TheQueensland College of Art Graduate Exhibitions are a must-see forart lovers on the lookout for the “next big thing”.

The Queensland College of Art will open its doors to the public this week for a series of exhibitions featuring the work of its graduating students.

The annual QCA Showcase will take over the South Bank and Gold Coast campuses, showcasing the work of final-year students from Fine Art, Photography, Design and Contemporary Australian Indigenous Art.

Many of the works on display will be on sale, helping kick-start the careers of emerging artists.

Homegrown talent

Director of the QCA, Professor Derrick Cherrie (pictured right), said the exhibitions were an opportunity for the community to see the talent being nurtured in their hometown.

“The QCA is Australia’s oldest and one of the country’s largest art academies and has produced some of Australia’s leading contemporary artists,” he said.

“The showcase exhibitions are an ideal way to see the many diverse and exciting art forms the QCA has on offer and the extraordinary work being made here.”

Events across the QCA Showcase will include industry previews, student awards, panel discussions, exhibition displays and more.

Finding your passion

Graduating Bachelor of Fine Artstudent Kierra-Jay Power is exhibiting ‘Anatomise’, a series of 3D printed jewellery pieces made based on anatomical models and cast in sterling silver.

“I came to the QCA intent on studying art theory, but you get addicted to making things, and I fell in love with jewellery design,” she said.

“I’ve had fantastic mentors and been able to access all kind of cutting-edge equipment and materials.”

A powerful journey

Bachelor of Photography photojournalism student Shaun Singleton is exhibiting a series of photographs that tackle issues of ageism in the workplace – an issue close to his heart.

“I’m in my late 50s and came to study at the QCA after being retrenched,” he said.

“The photos I’m exhibiting are designed to create an emotional response in the viewer and make them think about how it feels to be without employment or purpose – a broken dinghy, disused industrial buildings.”

Shaun said his studies at the QCA had been life changing.

“My studies here have made me a different person – I haven’t just learnt a lot about photography, my whole world view has changed,” he said.

“As part of the degree I’ve travelled to Goa and Nepal and worked with internationally renowned photographers – it’s been wonderful.”

Designing the future

Design student Jaeda Abraham is exhibiting a collection of stunning workfrom her portfolio, from tote bags and button badges to art prints and activity books.

The graphic designer and illustrator works across a range of mediums, from digital design to typography, screen printing and hand lettering.

“I believe creativity is everywhere and for everyone,” she said.

“My time at the QCA has given me amazing freedom to experiment, and I feel like I’ve had a chance to taste everything I wanted to study.”

The QCA Graduate Exhibitions will be held from 31 October – details of individual shows are available online.

You can follow the QCA’s talented graduates on Instagram.