Born to Fly Upwards

The gift of an education

Renowned visual artist and St Margaret’s Old Girl cj Hendry recently donated a piece of her work to the school, which was unveiled at the school’s biannual MAYO Arts Festival in May this year.

Hendry says this work – a characteristically oversized pen and ink drawing depicting the iconic school panama gift-wrapped in brown paper – illustrates her gratitude to her parents for giving her the gift of education at St Margaret’s.

The drawing was an incredibly generous gift to the school and a wonderful addition to the school’s art collection, particularly in light of Hendry’s dramatic rise to fame, not just in Australia, but globally. Just a few years ago, she began sharing her extraordinary hyper-realistic drawings with the world through a savvy social-media marketing strategy and these astonishingly meticulous artworks quickly became a hot ticket item in the global market, some fetching upwards of $50 000.

Principal Ros Curtis says the school is so proud not only of cj’s success, but the fact she was using that success to help others.

Making the most of her celebrity status, Hendry is creating work that lends voice to critical issues. Earlier this year, she created and auctioned a drawing of Nike AirMags dipped in black paint, which raised $130,000 USD for charity to purchase sneakers for underprivileged children in New York. More recently, another of Hendry’s pieces – a simple t-shirt stained the colour of blood and wrapped in the shape of a gun – was scaled up to 3,000 square feet and flown over Orlando, Chicago and New York with the hashtag #EndGunViolence.

“cj is living the school’s mission to prepare confident and compassionate women capable of contributing to a global community,” Ms Curtis said.

Hendry’s gift to the school is now on permanent display in St Margaret’s senior library in the Eunice Science and Resource Centre.