2009 Williamstown Festival Contemporary Art Prize
Reid Consultants $1000 Peoples Choice Award Winner Announced
Painter Nina Smart has been awarded the Reid Consultants $1000 Peoples Choice Award for the 2009 Williamstown Festival Contemporary Art Prize. The award was voted by a record number of 2033 members of the public who visited the exhibition held at one of Melbourne’s most exciting and interesting new contemporary art spaces, The Substation Art Centre in Newport.
Peoples Choice Award winning entry, The changing face of now by Nina Smart, watercolour on paper 2008, 45 x 180cm
Sponsor of the Peoples Choice Award, Greg Reid of local financial consulting firm Reid Consulting, said he was pleased to again sponsor the award which helped to further engage the visiting public with the artworks on display. ‘Art provides a great insight into the culture of any community, so it is a pleasure for us to provide a vehicle for the public to vote for their favourite artwork and recognize the artist they choose with this award,’ he said.
Members of the public who voted in the awards were also rewarded, going into the draw to receive 6 bottles of wine sponsored by Prospect Wines of Williamstown, who also supplied wines for the opening night attended by over 450 people. New part owner of Prospect Wines, Ailsa Page said they were proud to be associated with such a prestigious local event. ‘As a local resident I have followed the exciting progress of the Williamstown Festival Contemporary Art Prize over the past few years, so it is a great pleasure to be involved this year as a sponsor’ she said. Winner of the 6 bottles of wine was Harold Heckle from Altona.
The Contemporary Art Prize, which is run annually as part of the Williamstown Festival, is a national competition that attracts entries from all over Australia that continues to grow in reputation as a significant exhibition that broadly showcases the diversity and excellence of contemporary Australian art practice with a particular focus on artists from Melbourne’s western suburbs.
Prize Winners Announced at the Williamstown Festival Contemporary Art Prize Launch
Painter Dagmar Cyrulla of Kensington has taken out the $3000 major prize for the best exhibit in the 2009 Williamstown Festival Contemporary Art Prize. She was one of 106 artists short-listed to exhibit from a record number of entries received from across Australia. The launch and awards ceremony was held at The Substation Arts Centre in Newport on 20 March with a crowd of over 400 people in attendance.
The Contemporary Art Prize is run annually as part of the Williamstown Festival. Judges for this year were noted Melbourne artist Rick Amor, Director of Gallery 101 Dianna Gold, and Curator of Australian Art Exhibitions at the National Gallery of Victoria David Hurlston. They released the following statement regarding the winning entry.
"The judges were extremely impressed with the overall high standard of entries in the 2009 Williamstown Contemporary Art Award. While this made the judging of the 2009 prize a particularly challenging task the final selection was unanimous. The winning entry, The visitor II by Dagmar Cyrulla, impressed the judges by its competent yet understated execution; we considered it an engaging work, rich in its visual narrative and layered content”
Above Major Prize Winner Dagmar Cyrulla and her winning entry The visitor II, Oil on linen, 2008 Photo Nancy Belyea
Now in its fifth year at The Substation, one of Melbourne’s most interesting and exciting contemporary art spaces, the contemporary art prize is a national competition that attracts entries from all over Australia and which continues to grow in reputation as a significant exhibition that broadly showcases the diversity and excellence of contemporary Australian art practice with a particular focus on artists from the western suburbs.
Other awarded artists included East Melbourne based artist Jim Pavlidis, who took out the $1000 2D Award, regional Victorian artist Kate Caish of Warragul, who was the recipient of the $1000 3D Award sponsored by Williams Real Estate and South Australian artist Thomas Buchanan of Mitchell Park, who received the $500 Multi/Mixed/Digital Media Award. The $500 Local Artist Award was taken out by Michael Brennan of Seddon, with his painting ‘Admission’.
The exhibition was officially opened by State Member for Williamstown, Wade Noonan and the awards announced by Mr Noonan and Mayor of Hobsons Bay, Cr Peter Hempel.Victorian Arts Minister, Lynn Kosky MP, provided the following message for the exhibition catalogue. "As the Member for Altona and the Victorian Minister for the Arts, it is very pleasing to see these awards continue to flourish and provide a national context for the strong contemporary practice of our local artists…Both on a local and national scale, this exhibition highlights and reflects the diversity and strength of our unique community".
Curator and project coordinator Ken Wong, said the quantity and quality of entries this year was very pleasing and the judges had a difficult job in awarding the prizes. “We have a very strong and diverse group of works from all over Australia for this years exhibition but also a very good representation of twenty local artists in the mix. I think this exhibition continues to be the premier showcase for contemporary art in the western suburbs”, he said.
Above L- R Back Row: Williamstown Festival President Rod Page, Mayor of Hobsons Bay City Council Councillor Peter Hempel, Jim Pavlidis, Derek John, Julie Collins, Mark Farrelly, Member of Williamstown Wade Noonan MP Front Row L-R Michael Brennan, Dagmar Cyrulla, Ken Wong, Thomas Buchanan and member of the judging panel David Hurlston, Curator of Australian Art Exhibitions at NGV.
Photo Nancy Belyea
Judging Panel Rick Amor, leading Australian artist, Dianna Gold, Director Gallery 101, David Hurlston, Curator Australian Art Exhibitions, NGV
Curator/Project Co-ordinator Ken Wong, Watch Arts
Sponsored and supported by Williamstown Summer Festival Ltd, Hobsons Bay City Council, The Substation Arts Centre, Williams Real Estate, Reid Consultants, Fundere Studios, New North, West Art Supplies, Toyota Community Spirit, Prospect Wines Williamstown, The Seagulls Nest, Watch Arts
2009 Artists Farhana Ahad, Dena Ashbolt, Michael Ashby, Robin Astley, Wendy Beatty, Klara Bijana Klaric, Vanessa Blazevski, Paul Borg, Suzie Bourne, Michael Brennan, Fleur Brett, Thomas Buchanan Kate Caish, Kerry Cannon, Robyn Cerretti, Julie Collins & Derek John, Tim Craker, Dagmar Cyrulla, Pip Davey, Patrick Delbosc, Louise Donovan,Anna Ephraim, Samantha Everton, Mark Farrelly, Ben Fasham, David Frazer, Monica Gallivan, Erika Gofton, Julie Goodwin, Andrew Green, Timothy Gresham, Mandy Gunn, Wendy Haigh, Dionisia Salas Hammer, Eva Hampel, Trudi Harley, Susan Hase, Cathy Henenberg, Ray Hewitt, Bob Hickman, Amanda Hills, Kate Hughes, Kez Hughes, Amaya Iturri, Jacqueline Jacobi, Veronica Kent, Sara Keranen, John Knap, Kelly-dee Knight, Zai Kuang, Carolyn Lewens & Neil Stanyer, Nadine Lineham, Alison Locke, Cate Maddy, John Madsen, Soula Mantalvanos, David Marshall, Kim Martin, Lucy Martin Pawlikowski, Jill McFarlane, Darren McGinn, Vicki McInnes, Anton Mc Murray, Viv Mehes, Frank Mesaric, Lynn Miller, Shay Minster, Claire Mooney, Olga Morris, Kate Murdoch, Caitlin Muscat, Mike Nicholls, Isabel O’Brien, Carlo Pagoda, Penny Parkinson, Jim Pavlidis, Kirsten Perry, Bernadette Pilli, Stephen Pleban, Jutta Pryor, Darryl Rogers, Johnny Romeo, Laszlo Romer, Peter Rosman, Fiona Ruttelle, Judith Sackville-O’Donnell, Ginny Sargent, Ben Sheers, Julie Shiels, Louise Skacej, Nina Smart, Deane Sobey, Karen Standke, Gloria Stern, Jennyfer Stratman, Peter Tankey, Cameron Tauschke, The Contextual Villains, the naughty see monkey, Merryn J Trevethan, Phi Van Nguyen, Trinh Vu, Liz Walker, Alan Young, Michelle Zuccolo & Vaidas Zvirblis.