At PICA we recognise that we are situated within the unceded lands of the Whadjuk people of the Noongar Nation. We pay our respects and offer our gratitude to Elders past and present, and to those emerging leaders in the community. We acknowledge all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and the importance of their care and continued connection to culture, community and Country.

Always was, always will be.

Our galleries are open today 12–5pm. Our exhibitions are always free.

Term 1: Bunuru

Bring students to PICA in Term One to explore interdisciplinary learning, the body and time-based works across four exhibitions. Our Bunuru season of programming is presented in association with Perth Festival whose 2024 theme is Ngaangk – Noongar language for Sun/Mother.

Joan Jonas: Sun Signals

Explore the boundary-crossing approach of iconic American video and performance artist, Joan Jonas, who has influenced generations of artists since the 1960s. Excursions to Jonas’s Sun Signals exhibition are a chance to uncover the social, cultural and historical contexts shaping the artist’s exploration of time, space, movement and self-representation. Spark conversations with your students about how bodies are represented in different art forms and how performance art is documented and presented in gallery spaces.

Subjects: Visual Arts, Drama, Media Arts, Design,
Modern History

Helen Johnson: Follower, Leader

Consider the potential of painting as both a medium and creative process by unpacking the work of Naarm (Melbourne)-based artist Helen Johnson. Her approach to painting highlights how art can enhance social and emotional well-being by creating a space for critical thinking, connection and reflection. Follower, Leader brings together new figurative works shaped by Johnson’s experience of motherhood and created while training as an art therapist – a move that has shifted her practice towards conceptions of bodies, care and connection. Build your students’ knowledge of the links between arts practices, psychology, health and wellbeing.

Subjects: Visual Arts, Australian Art, Psychology, Health Studies, Children, Family and the Community.

A.K. Burns: Untitled (eclipse)

Draw attention to the materiality of film – its grain, texture and luminosity – while exploring ways of observing and recording natural phenomena and ecological systems. American artist AK Burns’s silent film Untitled (eclipse) records a total solar eclipse in the desert landscape of Nebraska with gradations of changing light and windswept vegetation. For this work, Burns worked with 16mm film (opposed to digital video), directly recording traces of sunlight onto its photosensitive surface. This atmospheric work highlights the passage of time and constant flux, connecting with Geography and Environmental Science learning.

Subjects: Visual Arts, Media Arts, Geography, Earth and Environmental Science, Material Design and Technology.

Diana Baker Smith: Falling Towards Another (A Score for the Void)

Explore site-specific art and ways of working across performance, moving images and installation through Diana Baker Smith’s Judy Wheeler Commission, Falling Towards Another (A Score for the Void). This work responds to spaces in the PICA building and features a text-based score of performative instructions that invite students to question the role of the audience, consider the history of the site and reflect on how we respond to and move through architectural spaces. The Judy Wheeler Commission is supported by the Simpson Family.

Subjects: Visual Arts, Drama, Dance, Design, Modern History, Australian Art, Site-Specific and the Community.

Learning Resources

Art Making: Creative Challenges for Students

Try these fun activities in class to spark imaginations! Our creative challenges for students set the scene for an excursion to PICA through hands-on learning about New York art of the 1960s-70s. Discover Joan Jonas’s pioneering work in Performance Art, Video Art and Installation.

Art Interpretation: Time-based Art

Our student worksheets about time-based art can help guide your visit. Drawing on critical analysis frameworks, these curriculum-aligned worksheets break down the influence of the context of artists and the use of elements and principles of art.

Student Workshops

Thursday 22 February | 10am and 1pm
1 hour and 45 minutes
$16 per head

Get physical in PICA’s gallery spaces while uncovering insights into interdisciplinary creative practice. Build connections for students across the Arts learning area through a tour of Joan Jonas’s Sun Signals exhibition followed by an artist-led workshop with local performer Sarah Nelson that brings together performance, video, drawing and installation. Hands-on, workshop activities will focus on developing student knowledge and skills to devise visual and physical performance and create interactive design that responds to space. This workshop builds on the learning experiences provided in the exhibition tour and encourages students to explore the gallery as a stage, encountering different techniques of communicating meaning through movement, material and form. Sarah Nelson is an actor, puppeteer, mask maker and physical performer working across theatre, film and community arts.

How to Book

Contact PICA’s Learning and Access Manager, Jenn Garland at


Helen Johnson: Care and Connection: Engaging the Mind and Body

During their visit students can take a break in the PICA Hub and take part in an all-ages art activity designed by artist, Helen Johnson. These activities emphasise the creative process as an important way for individuals to express themselves and explore their inner world. The act of creating can provide insights into thoughts and feelings. Our PICA Hub activities highlight the benefits of creating art by engaging the mind and body in grounding, soothing experiences as part of holistic well-being and mindfulness practices.