'All (150) Connections to Unley' Art Prizewinner announced

Published on 07 June 2021

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The competition was open to artists at all career stages and working in all mediums. 2021 marks the sixth year for the biennial art award, held this year during the 150th anniversary of Unley, with artists invited to respond to the sesquicentenary theme through their submitted artworks. 

The judging panel comprised Gloria Strzelecki, Associate Curator of the Art Gallery of South Australia, Cr Kay Anastassiadis, Karen Paris, Unley Museum Curator and Matthew Ives, Unley’s Cultural Development Office, who selected the winner from shortlisted finalists.

The team of judges announced Charmaine as the overall winner at a live-streamed, artist-only event on Friday 4 June. Her piece ‘150 seed pots for Unley green plots’ will be reproduced as posters and displayed across Unley to decorate its streets, and limited-edition bin stickers will be available to residents. The work consists of 150 individual ceramic pots which she made at the Adelaide Potters’ Club, presented in a heritage wooden crate once used to pack oranges.

Judge Gloria Strzelecki said she was delighted and excited when asked to be involved in the All (150) Connections to Unley Art Prize.

‘It has been my pleasure to be part of the judging group. Works submitted this year were of a high quality with artists showcasing their skills across a variety of media. The selection process was engaging, with lively conversations discussing the artist’s technique, originality and engagement with the theme of ‘All (150) Connections’ to mark the City of Unley’s anniversary’ Gloria said. 

The panel felt that Charmaine Osborne’s artwork eloquently met the thematic brief in both idea and execution. ‘Conceptually resolved, the work and the artistic statement together invoke the artist’s personal connection with and interpretation of Unley today and throughout its 150-year history. ‘150 seed pots for Unley green plots’ draws together past, present and future, placing hope in an ongoing cycle of life and growth, aligned with a contemporary emphasis on city greening’ said the judges in a unified statement.

‘Art plays a critical role in connecting us and provides insight into our place in the world. Art prizes, such as the City of Unley Art Prize, bring people together to create community and culture. Furthermore, they are important avenues in which artists can increase their profiles and visibility, exposing their works and practices to new audiences and potentially supporters’ Gloria added.

Along with the major prize of $5000, an Elected Members’ Choice Award of $500 and a People’s Choice Award will be presented after the exhibition’s final day on Friday 25 June.

Mayor Michael Hewitson AM said that art is an important way to honour the City of Unley at a significant milestone in its history.

‘Our city highly values artistic and cultural pursuits, which are a vital part of the social fabric of any community. This award, and the work submitted by a range of talented South Australian artists, has captured elements of our beautiful city and expressed how the different artists feel in their connections to it. While you can view their works online on Council’s website, I would encourage everyone who loves art to see them before this marvellous exhibition closes’ he said.

 All finalists’ works are on public display for three weeks from June 7 at the Hughes Gallery and can be viewed at unley.sa.gov.au/unley-art-prize on this website.

 The Hughes Gallery is located at the Fullarton Park Community Centre at 411 Fullarton Road, Fullarton. The gallery is open Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm. Entry is free.