More than 100 dignitaries, artists and guests, joined Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson for the official opening and winner announcement of the 2014 Sunshine Coast Art Prize winners at Caloundra Regional Gallery on Wednesday, August 27.
Mayor Jamieson said the Sunshine Coast Art Prize is the annual signature arts event on the Sunshine Coast and is a cultural initiative of Sunshine Coast Council.
“As one of the richest regional art awards in Australia, the Sunshine Coast Art Prize has consistently attracted great interest and the highest of standards amongst two dimensional entries received from all over the nation,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“The Sunshine Coast Art Prize has certainly made its mark on the national arts calendar.”
Community Programs Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said it was an honour to welcome artists and guests to the Caloundra Regional Gallery – the home of the Sunshine Coast Art Prize.
“Each year we see a high level of creative talent that is certainly impressive and that talent is a challenge to the judge to select two winners from the 40 finalists,” she said.
“We are extremely fortunate to have secured highly respected judge Chris Saines, Director of Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art.”
Visually compelling and evocative are the words that Sunshine Coast Art Prize 2014 judge Chris Saines used to describe the overall winner and Highly Commended prizewinner’s artworks.
Chris Saines said Matthew de Moiser from Preston, Victoria was the outstanding winner of the prestigious national 2014 Sunshine Coast Art Prize.
“Matthew’s artwork entitled Servo (state 3) was the most visually compelling and entirely resolved work in the Prize and receives a $15,000 cash prize and an Artist in Residence at Arley Farm in Maleny,” Mr Saines said.
“It was the work which I kept coming back to; the work which excited my interest the most. I wanted to know more about it. I still do. With a striking economy of means, de Moiser conveys both the spare modernity of service station design and the kit-set composure and occasional emptiness of suburban life.
“There are, in the Australian context, allusions to the work of Callum Morton and Jeffrey Smart, and perhaps even an unknowing nod to the low viewpoints of one of Russell Drysdale’s outback towns. A meticulously wrought assemblage with all the appearance of a dead pan painting, Servo (state 3) is a worthy winner.”
Chris Saines said he awarded the Highly Commended prize to Prudence Flint from St Kilda, Victoria, who receives $2500 prize money for her artwork Doll.
“Flint’s Doll is an evocative and finely calibrated painting, at once a self-portrait and a visual poem of reflection and quietude,” Mr Saines said.
“In a highly organised composition that has resonances of Australian modernist, John Brack, Flint looks longingly back into her childhood. It is a painting filled with measure and calm, as interesting for its abstract organisation of planes as for its more narrative subject.
“I would like to congratulate all artists named as finalists in one of the nation’s most prestigious art prizes – this is something they can be very proud of.”
The Sunshine Coast Art Prize exhibition will be on display at Caloundra Regional Gallery until October 26, 2014.
In addition to the major prizes, the careers of six young emerging local artists have also received a gigantic boost after being named finalists in the inaugural Sunshine Coast Art Prize 2014 New Media category.
Community Programs Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said the Sunshine Coast Art Prize 2014 New Media category was open to any emerging local artist aged between 15 to 30 years.
“The entries included artwork such as photography, video, animation and projection with a focus on innovative digital technologies,” Cr McKay said.
“I would particularly like to thank the sponsors, Analogue Digital, the University of the Sunshine Coast, Earthbase Productions and James Birrell Design Lab, for their valuable support. Without this support we would not be able to invigorate the emerging local arts community,” Cr McKay said.
“With prizes totalling $15,000 including cash, mentorships, a residency and exhibition – this is a great opportunity to launch the careers for these young artists.”
Division 2 Councillor Tim Dwyer said the finalists’ artworks will be exhibited at Caloundra Regional Gallery in February 2015.
“These finalists are the future of our arts industry and this opportunity is life changing for them,” Cr Dwyer said.
“I am very happy to announce the finalists for the Sunshine Coast Art Prize New Media category are Lauren Edmonds from Maleny, Conrad Gracie from Mooloolaba, Jess Doak from Highworth, Susan Bohmer from Sippy Downs, Isabella Summerfield from Buddina and Brayden Van Meurs from Wurtulla.”
The prizes for New Media category are valued at $15,000 and include:
- $2,500 cash presented by Analogue Digital
- $3,000 mentorship for a chosen applicant presented by Earth Base Productions to assist and develop the emerging artists practice
- $2,500 public art project and mentoring for a selected entrant, presented by James Birrell Design Lab
- in-kind design and web promotional advice provided by Analogue Digital for a selected entrant and the opportunity to showcase at Analogue Digital Brisbane 2015 for a selected applicant, valued at $2,500
- a public exhibition of the artist’s work at a venue to be determined supported by Caloundra Regional Gallery staff, valued at $2,000
- a four week residency at The Old Ambulance Building Nambour followed by an exhibition at Ground Zero Gallery.
Caloundra Regional Gallery is owned and operated by Sunshine Coast Council and is located at 22 Omrah Avenue and is open from Wednesday to Sunday from 10am to 4pm.