2020 Muswellbrook Art Prize

Guest adjudicator Rachael Parsons, Director at New England Regional Art Museum, announced the following winning entries from each prize category on March 14, 2020. Congratulations and thank you to all who entered the competition.

  • Zoe Tjanavaras, Parched Abundance

    Zoe Tjanavaras, Parched Abundance

    Ceramics 2019,  reclaimed stoneware, underglaze and silica glaze, high temperature kiln fired,  32 x 26 x 26cmThis work is my emotional response to climate etched landscapes of Northern New South Wales. The texturised clay surface symbolises the cracked earth, scorched ground, burnt out crisped vegetation. The organic leftovers of something from before. The sensory touch conveys the static of the bush, the pins and needles you feel in the atmosphere from living in drought. The emptiness of the vessels reservoir mirrors a deep void of anxiety but also hope of being refilled. The vessel itself, hand built with reclaimed clay, is a reference of possible regeneration in a post apocalypse climate. The hope of renewal.

  • Paul White, Precarious Balance of the Phoenix Bloom (White Orchid) 2019 │

    Paul White, Precarious Balance of the Phoenix Bloom (White Orchid) 2019 │


    Works on Paper 2019, Paul White, Precarious Balance of the Phoenix Bloom (White Orchid), pencil, 95 x 77cmPrecarious Balance of the Phoenix Bloom (White Orchid) depicts an orchid plant from my home that has been removed from its vessel exposing its sustaining root system. The image depicts the plants fragile state of flux, simultaneously showing stages of flourishing growth along with shrivelled up flowers and leaves that have perished. My use of pencil on paper in a meticulous and highly detailed manner is not only an attempt to gather every degree of detail from the image by conducting a thorough investigation into it, but also through this time consuming process, a way of slowing down the world.

  • Marion Borgelt, Moon's Shimmer: No 1

    Marion Borgelt, Moon's Shimmer: No 1


    2019, pearlescent acrylics, acrylic, timber, Belgian linen, nails, vertical end frames, 212 x 210cm

    My sculptural paintings, of which Moon’s Shimmer: No. 1 is an example, have been developed over that last 17 years. The idea of optical illusion and optical kinetics have been of key
    importance to me and I have explored this theme through a number of different creative processes. In Moon’s Shimmer: No. 1, my aim was to create a mesmerising effect that flickered
    and shimmered like a ‘moon river’ on the ocean’s surface. Using a technique of finely cutting, twisting and pinning the strips of Belgian linen in such a way that the artwork appears to
    shift and change I am able to create a play of light that engages viewers as they walk past the artwork.

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