The Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia (CACSA) was established as the Contemporary Art Society (CAS) in 1942, when a breakaway group of young artists from the Royal Society of Arts sought greater opportunities to exhibit their work. What followed was almost 75 years of pioneering activity dedicated to the promotion and exhibition of contemporary visual art.
In 1964 the CAS acquired an iconic bluestone bungalow in the leafy Adelaide suburb of Parkside to exhibit work in. Until its closure in 2016, the Porter Street property was the longest running contemporary art space in Australia. Adventurism and risk-taking defined the CAS, with its exhibitions and programs propelling the careers of many iconic South Australian artists.
The Contemporary Art Centre of South Australia incorporated in 1986, and the organisation transformed from a volunteer-run gallery established for the exhibition of members’ work, into a publicly funded organisation with an exhibition program of national and international significance, and a revered publishing arm led by Broadsheet Journal.
In late 2016 the CACSA merged with the Australian Experimental Art Foundation (AEAF) to create a new entity: ACE Open.