The Art Gallery of New South Wales is the leading museum of art in NSW and Sydney, which holds significant collections of Australian, European and Asian art, and presents nearly forty exhibitions annually.
The Gallery currently employs four Display Technicians, like Luke James - who have backgrounds in carpentry and joinery - to create the display boxes and shelves for their exhibition.
Luke left school in Year 10 to pursue an apprenticeship. As a child he watched his brother turn down an apprenticeship, and asked his father what an apprenticeship actually was. Once his father explained the practical aspect an apprenticeship, he decided it was what he wanted to do, and Luke went on to do a carpentry and joinery apprenticeship through TAFE. Luke spent three years working in housing, then two years in maintenance, before accepting his position at the Art Gallery of NSW as a Display Technician. Display Technicians primarily create ‘plimths’ – display boxes that will securely hold and display artwork at the gallery.
Luke's always had a fetish for building things, and likes that carpentry is always different, and flexible. He highly recommends apprenticeships to young people, as he believes it can lead to great things in the future.