In 2009, Di Jones Real Estate Established The Matthew Jones Foundation In The Name Of Her Son, Who Passed Away At Just 34 Years of Age.
Matthew’s spirit and artwork continue to support and inspire the local community
The Foundation was established to remember him in a joyous way with the Matthew Jones Award. Each year Di Jones Real Estate organises, funds and hosts this children’s art competition involving local primary schools. The Foundation distributes prize money to local and special needs schools whilst encouraging and nurturing young local talent.
The only son of Bill and Di Jones and brother to Kim was born in 1973 with mental and physical disabilities that required high cost specialist care. Already highly motivated to support not only Matthew but others families with similar needs, Di Jones was relentless in establishing the most nurturing environment possible for Matthew right up until his unexpected death in 2008.
Her efforts continued with the immediate establishment of The Matthew Jones Foundation with the aim of raising funds initially for two specialist educational facilities – Wairoa School and the Warrah Special School where Matthew was cared for and spent a significant part of his life.
From 2009 through to 2015, we worked with local primary schools throughout the Eastern Suburbs with artworks exhibited at the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation in Paddington, through Gene Shermans generous support, and sold them to raise funds to support the Warrah and Wairoa schools. Each year Di Jones Real Estate donates prize money to participating community schools.
Local businesses we need to thank who also made valuable contributions over the 7 years in the Eastern Suburbs included Thomas Dux Grocer, Hotel Ravesi Bondi, Jo Malone’s Woollahra, Chiswick Restaurant and Bar, Woollahra Hotel, Bistro Moncur, Model Co, Lesley McKay’s Bookshop, Murphy Gozzard, Laduree, Studio Canal, Absolute Party Hire and Dennis West Photography. Since 2009, more than $60,000 has been raised for not only Warrah and Wairoa – but several schools have benefited from Di Jones’ personally inspired philanthropy throughout Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.
With Di Jones Real Estate business expansion from the Eastern Suburbs into other communities throughout the Northern Suburbs, North Shore and Southern Highlands it seemed only fitting that we should support other local communities, special needs and local schools through the Matthew Jones Foundation. In 2016, The Matthew Jones Foundation is supporting the Tangara Special Needs School and the Bowral Community of Schools through the art awards program.
The event will be held on Tuesday 14th June at Mount Ashby Estate in Moss Vale. MC for the evening will be Jane Cush, director of the Goulburn Regional Art Gallery, practising sculptor and curator. Guest judging artist will be Danie Mellor, resident of the Southern Highlands and award winning artist. Money raised on the night from sale of the artworks and raffle tickets will be gifted to the Bowral Community of Schools. We have had overwhelming support from the local community and businesses providing prizes for the students, schools and raffle. We’d like to thank St George Bank, Bing Lee Bowral, Target Bowral, Goulburn Regional Art Gallery, Berkelouw Books, Joh Bailey Salon Bowral, Model Co, Centennial Vineyards, Biota Dining, Nick Leary Photography, Highlife Magazine, Glass Café Mittagong as well as Jane Cush and Danie Mellor for donating their time to support the foundation and local Southern Highlands community. In 2017 we will be looking to support Warrah and Wairoa schools again through the local schools in the Northern Suburbs of Sydney and will be back in the Eastern Suburbs in 2018.
PATRONS TO THE MATTHEW JONES FOUNDATION
Dr Gene Sherman AM (PhD, University of Sydney, 1981) is Chairman and Executive Director of Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation, a philanthropic organisation dedicated to the public exhibition of significant contemporary art from Australia, the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East. From 1986–2007 she was Director and Proprietor of Sherman Galleries. Dr Sherman is Adjunct Professor, UNSW Art & Design (formerly COFA);,inaugural patron of the Designers Circle for the MAAS Centre for Fashion; and a board member of The Australian Institute of Art History (2013) and Sydney Contemporary (2014). She is Co-Chair of the Tate Asia-Pacific Acquisitions Committee, a member of the International Association of Art Critics, and an Asialink Asia Literacy Ambassador. The Foundation is a member of CIMAM, the International Committee of ICOM for Museums and Collections of Modern Art, and recently supported Dinh Q. Lê’s project for dOCUMENTA (13), Sketches of Life from the War Zone, 2011–12. Dr Sherman’s former board appointments include: Powerhouse Museum (1994–2001); Bundanon Trust (1995–2002); Deputy Chair, Power Institute Council at the University of Sydney (1996–2006); ARTAND Australia (formerly Art & Australia) (2003–2015); and Deputy Chair, National Portrait Gallery Board (2008–2015). She regularly lectures to a wide range of institutions on topics such as gallery management, the art of collecting, philanthropy, private foundations and contemporary Japanese fashion.