Right at home with plum job
BRETT ADLINGTON is still pinching himself.
The 39-year-old curator of the Lake Macquarie Gallery, near Newcastle, has just been appointed gallery director of the Lismore Regional Gallery, replacing out-going director Steven Alderton, who is taking up a position as director of the Casula Powerhouse cultural centre in Sydney.
Mr Adlington is thrilled to be returning to the area where he spent his high school years.
“I’m really looking forward to coming back to Lismore, even though it will obviously be a huge challenge to follow Steven,” he said.
Mr Adlington, having originally studied photography at the Sydney College of the Arts, first became involved with a gallery when he and his wife were living in Townsville. A job at the local gallery led to a position as curator at the Gold Coast Art Gallery, where he was based for six years.
“When I was at Kadina High School the Gold Coast was usually somewhere you drove past on the way to Brisbane,” Mr Adlington said.
“But when I was living and working there I found there was much more to it artistically than I could possibly have imagined. Also, the Gold Coast Arts Centre was an excellent example of a gallery connecting to its community.”
A fan of community arts, Mr Adlington sees his job as extending the work of the Lismore gallery to a wider, and younger audience, whilst building on the much higher profile Steven Alderton has created for the gallery during his tenure.
“My parents still live up there, so I have retained strong links to the area,” he said. “I’ve visited it continuously since I left to go to college 20 years ago. I think one of the main attractions of the area is the landscape. You don’t realise until you leave and come back how deeply embedded the landscape of your childhood is within your psyche.”
Curiously, Mr Adlington is exactly the age his father was when they moved to the Northern Rivers from Sydney.
“They say life goes full circle, and I guess that’s true,” he said.
Mr Adlington takes up his appointment as director of the Lismore Regional Gallery from January 18.