SSI News Blog

‘Art in the Hills’ is one of the longest running annual art exhibitions in Sydney.

For 44 years, Oakhill College has hosted the exhibition to engage the community by inspiring and developing an appreciation of the arts.

This year, the Hills District and beyond, will be inspired by the works of two artists of refugee background, Bassam Jabar and Victor Youssef.

Getting There by Bassam Jabar (left) and Pharoah by Victor Youssef.
Getting There by Bassam Jabar (left) and Pharoah by Victor Youssef.

Supported by Ignite Small Business Start-ups, an initiative of Settlement Services International (SSI), Bassam and Victor are talented artists who pursue and excel in their art forms while forging a living from it.

Ignite Small Business Start-ups facilitates business creation for fledgling entrepreneurs of refugee background keen to establish a small business.

Oakhill College Art Coordinator Trish Brush said the exhibition was perfect for emerging artists.

“We don’t have rigid entry selection criteria so that we can give all artists a fair chance to exhibit and network,” said Ms Brush.

Mr Youssef came to Australia in 2012 with his wife. His home country Egypt still inspires his copper etchings, and his entries Pharoah and Mona Lisa will be part of the exhibition as well as the Art Prize

Since arriving in Australia in 2013, Mr Jabar has built a small but growing following of his various art forms. His paintings Unity in Oneness and Getting There will also be among the 500 strong exhibition and Art Prize.

All exhibits are for sale.

Event details:

Opening Night and announcement of Art Prize; Friday 20 March; 7pm-10.30pm

Exhibition; Saturday 21-Sunday 22 March; 10am-4pm

Oakhill College

Old Northern Road

Castle Hill

Success stories

Refugee turned citizen feels privileged to have a say

Paz Roman smiling to camera.At 17, Paz Roman was nominated as Young Australian of the Year, mostly for her volunteer work. Ironically, she wasn’t an Australian. She came here from Chile as a refugee with her family when she was just a baby, and despite living in Australia since then, she struggled with the idea of becoming a citizen.  

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