Winner: Ann Warnes
President Adele Bruens
When I was here judging the show I was thinking about why I was drawn to certain works. Thinking about how art prize judging is really very subjective and even arbitrary. Its really about my opinion – my likes or dislikes – what I’m personally drawn to.
When it comes down to it I can have an opinion (it might be educated or it might draw on my years of experience in the artworld) but its still just my opinion. Actually it might be sentimental or whimsical. What I see is influenced or filtered through my life experiences. So again I say its just an opinion.
So I wanted to say to all the entrants – you are all making something creative out of nothing – you are entering the world of creativity through your chosen medium and chosen subject matter – whatever the quality or technical skill or experimentation with different materials – whatever the end result – you are already winning (as corny as that sounds) but its true.
I have two children in year 7. I have just found out that visual art is no longer a compulsory subject after year 7. The Board of Studies at some point made a decision that Music, Visual Art and Languages were not an essential part of our education system. I am still kind of in shock about this. I find it sad and kind of scary. So when I see people out there making art, enjoying their creativity, putting themselves on the line by exhibiting their work I am hopeful that creativity will survive our outdated, actually backward education system.
So – to everyone who didn’t get a mention – you are winning just by being here. Congratulations for being part of keeping art relevant.
First Prize: Untitled 2
Artist: Ann Warnes
The winning work is unassuming – innocent even. It has a charm and modesty that is refreshing. Its simple composition references farmland and rolling hills. There is an openness and lightness in the work that kept my attention. Yet there is depth too. A story waiting to unfold in the lives of those who live there and tend the animals.
Picking the winner is always hard and yet when I stood in the space and looked around the work that touched me most deeply was Ann Warnes untitled oil painting – Congratulations Ann.
Second Prize; Winter
Artist: Thierry Ollivain
I should just say I originally studied printmaking and photography. It really is hard for me to go past a good photo and this particular one had some etching elements that drew me in even more. The photographer has captured a certain grunge element that is visually attractive and there is also an element of fantasy about the work.
Highly Commended : Midlands, Tasmania
Artist: Natasha Daniloff
This wintry beachscape brought back so many memories of camping with my dad. I love the composition, the feel of the beach, the emptiness – a little bit of wilderness.
Highly Commended: Sorry
Artist: Bethany Flynn
Medium: Pen on paper
This work kept me thinking about media and materials and how artists can use so many things to make marks. The different results that are obtained with different tools or materials. I love the raw emotion shown here with so many things going on for each character.
Highly Commended: Sun Bleached Landscape
Artist: Gillian Hand
I didn’t pay much attention to this work at first – sorry about that – but as I spent time in the space and kept looking around to see where my eyes and thoughts would rest I kept coming back to this landscape. It reads like an aerial map. With layers of story. There is depth here – something to discover.
I also felt compelled to acknowledge the use of different materials. It can be hard to work in materials traditionally not considered high art. And even though mostly those barriers have been removed it still remains a struggle.
Highly Commended: The Red Chair, Haefliger’s
Artist: Barbara Holmes
This work stood out from early in my visit to the gallery. I love the reflection of light on the ceiling. The composition. Execution. The use of light and dark. I found it left me wondering what had just happened – who had just walked out the door.
Commended: Flannel Flowers and Sandstone
Artist: Ian Brown
I love this photo. So evocative and simple. I am always drawn to Black and White photography and this definitely stood out.
Commended: Mt Solitary Burning
Artist: Liliane Ivins
Medium: Oil on board
I thought this deserved a mention as a very recent and yet rare event that capture many people’s attention and imaginations. It was a spectacular burn that was quite controversial. I felt that this painting showed the billowing clouds accurately and effectively.
Commended: KP, aye!
Artist: Gary Levin
I was drawn to this photo for the sharp lines, the contrast and the architectural references. It reads like an abstract painting and yet has detail. Well done.
Artist: Joy Myers Creed
Medium: Pencil and ink
This pencil and ink drawing stuck out to me due to its simplicity and honesty. The concept of memory is easily portrayed – there is no affectation here – no tricks – there is a feeling of effortlessness in the lines.
Commended: Lemon Garlic
Artist: Phil Went
Medium: Oil on linen
I love the intimacy of this work. It is simple as a still life should be – with an everyday, homely feel. I particularly liked the winter references of lemon and garlic which I use in curing colds.
Commended: Evening Sky over Springwood
Artist: Vanessa Whittington
Medium: Oil on canvas
I was drawn to this work because of the unusual skyline – looking over the roof tops without seeing the buildings below – the rough clouds and wintry sunset evoking a very typical mountains feel.