Diversity key in Jayne Wilson Memorial Arts Competition and Exhibition

CELEBRATING DIVERSITY: Wollongong artist Jedd Dimension and First Floor Program coordinator Marilyn Dunn.

CELEBRATING DIVERSITY: Wollongong artist Jedd Dimension and First Floor Program coordinator Marilyn Dunn.

The largest collection of works to date feature in the fourth annual Jayne Wilson Memorial Arts Competition and Exhibition.

Entries from all over Australia reflecting the theme of “diversity” have been received for the exhibition, opening on Thursday night at the Wollongong Salvation Army premises in Burelli Street.

The exhibition and competition were established in 2014 as a celebration of Wilson’s passion for community and love of creativity.

Ms Wilson established the First Floor Program, for families impacted by substance use, mental health issues and suicide, in 1996.

Ms Wilson, who was also a well-known police chaplain - serving the Lake Illawarra Area Command, its officers and their families for seven years, passed away on Christmas day 2013 from cancer.

‘’We wanted to involve the community in honouring Jayne’s legacy; she loved art and used it frequently in our support groups and programs, so this was a way we could combine these elements and celebrate her passion for family, recovery and hospitality,’’ First Floor Program coordinator Marilyn Dunn said.

‘’We’ve been overwhelmed by the community response.

‘’The works we’ve received are incredibly creative and colourful and very much in keeping with Jayne’s passion for creativity and beauty.’’

The exhibition has been organised in conjunction with the Wilson family, who will judge the winning entry in the Wilson Family Award - for the work which best represents Ms Wilson.

It will also feature a collection of work by local artist Jedd Dimension, whose work is a colourful exploration of the power of the medium of paint.

‘’I paint in the three-dimensional space, focusing on exploiting paint for its strength, depth and form,’’ Dimension said.

‘’There is no one way to create a painting or work and I try to reflect this in my painting practice, I do not restrict myself to practicing one art style, as the world is very diverse.’’

The Jayne Wilson Memorial Arts Competition and Exhibition is open daily 10am-3pm until January 29.