Elizabeth Perry's artistic career began in 1914 at the National Gallery School where she studied with Bernard Hall and Frederick McCubbin.
After exhibiting with the Victorian Artists’ Society, she was awarded the National Gallery of Victoria Travelling Scholarship in 1918. After World War 1, she travelled to Paris, exhibited at the Salon des Artistes Francais and studied at the Royal Academy of Arts, London.
After resettling in Sydney she established her own Chelsea Art School, which continued for 20 years. Her successful students included Eric Thake, Vera Blackburn and Paul Haefliger. She also taught drawing, printmaking and painting at the Sydney Art School in the 1930s with Julian Ashton and Thea Proctor.
On the recommendation of Roy de Maistre, Perry taught at PLC Sydney in 1930 and continued to guide, inspire and support her many students until her retirement 30 years later in 1962.
The practice of drawing was fundamental in both her artmaking and teaching where she practiced and promoted working en plein air and from life. This is seen in many of her paintings, drawings and prints now held in major collections including the Art Gallery of New South Wales, the National Gallery of Australia, the National Gallery of Victoria and the Queensland Art Gallery.
To honour her contribution to PLC Sydney, the Adelaide Perry Gallery was opened in 2001 and continues to provide a rich and diverse Visual Arts and Design teaching and learning resource for both our students and the broader community.
The Adelaide Perry Prize for Drawing, an acquisitive award of $25,000, commemorates and celebrates Perry’s commitment to art education and her ongoing connection with the art world.