Inviting a multi-disciplinary range of nature-inspired Australian artists, the award celebrates connectivity with nature and raises awareness of the importance of conserving our precious, unique Australian environment.
This open competition is judged by a panel of well- known members of the Victorian art industry, including a member of WAMA’s Art Advisory Council. Finalists are displayed in an exhibition within WAMA’s on-line gallery.
Entries for the 2023 WAMA Art Prize will open in July, 2023.
Key dates will be available closer to the time.
18 Sept 2021 – Jan 31 2022
(extended to June 30 2022)
The quality and number of artists who entered the Art prize demonstrates the resonance that the theme of art and nature has within our creative community, with their work reflecting the many environmental issues facing us all.
Jackie Healy, Chair, WAMA Arts Advisory Council
In the inaugural year, the major acquisitive prize of $15,000 was awarded to Tasmanian artist Melissa Smith for her work Listen Deeply – Lake Sorell.
Intaglio collagraph print on magnani paper
76.0 x 120.0 cm (triptych)
In Susan Sontag’s essay, The Aesthetics of Silence, she makes reference to absolute silence: coming to an end of mental activity. This state is both absolutely vacuous and completely full…like empty wisdom. In this silence there is an opportunity for thoughts beyond thoughts.
Lake Sorell on the central plateau in Tasmania is an environment that provides a sense of quietness, layered in its own history and stories. Through listening deeply to this landscape, a sense of harmony and understanding can be found.
This period of isolation as a consequence of the pandemic has provided the opportunity for many to experience the beauty and solace nature can provide. There has been an ‘awakening’ associated with such environments where a unique sense of self-awareness is realised that is difficult to describe that in turn emanates a sense of life and hope within our ever-changing world that balances on a tipping point.
Watercolour on arches paper
29.0 x 29.0 cm
Physalis peruviana, commonly known as the Cape gooseberry is irresistable to paint. My parents grow these golden delicious delights on their certified organic farm at Bellellen, near the foothills of the Grampians National Park.
It is a South American plant native to Peru, Ecuador and Columbia and part of the nightshade family. After the flower falls off, the Calyx expands, ultimately forming a beige papery husk that encloses the bright yellow little fruit. The papery husk is almost translucent and sometimes shiny, exposing the intricate network of tiny veins and fibres that make up the husk.
For a botanic artist that thrives on detail, I found this to be a fabulous subject. Just the appearance of the pretty shiny fruit, sneaking a glimpse at the world from within its little paper home is a sight to behold.
The WAMA Art Prize is entered online via the WAMA website. An online submission form will be available when entries open. Images of the works being submitted must be uploaded to the website for the judging process.
There is a limit of two entries per person. Please note that only one artwork per artist will be selected for exhibition.
$30 administration fee per entry.