Q Helen, tell us a bit about yourself …..
A My name’s Helen Alexander and my Adelaide business is Desert Art. Desert Art has been operating as a supplier of high-end Aboriginal artwork to the Australian and international retail market since 1990 when it was founded by Trevor Chant. I purchased my first piece of art from Desert Art 14 years ago and have gone on to purchase several more pieces since. After 30 years, Trevor has handed Desert Art on to me and my husband Steve to run. We both have a passion for Aboriginal Art and hope to help many more people find the joy in owning pieces of this amazing and important Australian art. We continue to build on the friendships and contacts with our artists. We work from our home and I think viewing art in a home makes it more personal for our clients.
Q How long have you lived in Adelaide?
A 34 years. I am originally a farm girl from Kimba on the Eyre Peninsula.
Q What do you enjoy most about living in Adelaide?
A Green gardens and lawns, (didn’t really have that at Kimba!) and beautiful architecture.
Q What are your favourite Adelaide places to eat?
A Chianti, Jolleys, and the Crafers Hotel are just three, we have so many choices.
Q What are your favourite Adelaide places to drink and what is your favourite South Australian drink?
A Bar Torino is great before or after dinner in the city, also Hula Hoop in summer. My favourite drink would have to be Rockfords Alicante Bouchet or a beautiful G&T.
Q What are your favourite Adelaide shops for furniture and homewares?
A I’m a House and Garden girl for sure, I seem to have to pop in there quite regularly. Also love wandering Magill Road.
Q What books are you currently reading?
A I was given about 100 books from the previous owner of the business so I am steadily working my way through those. You can never stop learning, especially when it comes to aboriginal culture and art.
Q What’s on your current playlist?
A I’m still an INXS, John Mellencamp, Elton John and Eagles kind of listener mostly although I always have the radio on. Love Adele also.
Q Which travel destinations are ones you’d recommend?
A Within Australia, Margaret River was great as was Tasmania. Always love being in the snow, mostly Falls Creek. Just recently went on the Ghan to Alice and then out to Uluru, would recommend this also. We were lucky enough to do an overseas holiday a couple of years ago which included Budapest, Prague, Vienna, Croatia, Montenegro and Italy. WOW, not sure I could pick just one.
Q What are your favourite things to do in Adelaide and South Australia?
A We have a place at Encounter Bay that I love going to, McLaren Vale wineries are great and so close. My sister and her husband are at Moonta Bay so out on the boat fishing with them is always a favourite.
Q Who are your favourite Adelaide tradespeople?
A We have renovated about 10 homes over the years so we have many trades who are great.
Our carpenter Duncan Draper from Specialized Homes is great. He never has a problem he can’t sort out and he is used to us changing something on the plans and it doesn’t phase him [0410 409 795].
Also Matt Sciancalepore from Deluxe Bathrooms and Tiling does excellent work [0438 895 580].
Desert Art is one of the fabulous destinations we visit on some of our OLIO Tours.