Industry News February 2019

Latest industry news from the visual and media arts, craft and design sector, February 2019.

In The News

Medevac Bill passed in parliament, by other party members. This allows asylum seekers and refugees being detained offshore to be brought to Australia for medical attention if necessary. 

Julie Bishop will resign from Australian politics at the coming election. She made the announcement in the House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon, which received a standing ovation from Coalition and Labor MPs.

In Awards and Prizes

Alana Holmberg has won the $30,000 National Photographic Portrait Prize for her work Greta in her Kitchen, 36 weeks. Alex Vaughan received the Highly Commended for Sumbawa pride – life on a boat with eleven kids and the Art Handlers’ Award went to Elizabeth Looker for A Calm So Deep.

Anh Nguyen’s Jamboree Morning was named the winner of the $20,000 2019 Basil Sellers Art Prize. Eurobodalla Mayor, Liz Innes, said the grand opening of the Bas was an incredibly special occasion that marked a turning point for creative arts development in the shire. Moruya artist Stephanie McClory won the $5,000 prize with her acrylic on canvas piece, Some days are Rough

Multi-disciplinary artist Alex Seton has been announced as the third recipient of the Mordant Family/Australia Council Affiliated Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome. The fellowship is made possible through the generous support of the Mordant family.

Life, a small and delicate ceramic artwork by Glenwood artist Erik Shahmoradian, has been voted the winner of the People’s Choice Prize in the 2018 Blacktown City Art Prize.

The Art Gallery of WA has announced the twelve shortlisted artists for the 2019 Tom Malone Prize for Australian glass artists.

The shortlist exhibition will feature the work of: Clare Belfrage (SA), Jeremy Lepisto (NSW), Marc Leib (WA), Jenni Kemarre Martiniello (ACT), Mark Eliott (NSW), Nick Mount (SA),Matthew Curtis (NSW), Liam Fleming (SA), Kayo Yokoyama (NSW), Anne Sorensen(WA), Stephen Skillitzki (SA) and Lewis Batchelar (SA).  

Alex Davern has won the tidal.18: City of Devonport National Art Award’s People’s Choice prize for his work Night Splash, a pigment print on aluminium. The biennial tidal.18: City of Devonport National Art Award is sponsored by the Devonport City Council and the Friends of the Devonport Gallery and is currently valued at $15,000. The next tidal will take place in 2020.

Dr Linda Erceg has been named as the successful applicant for the Ephemeral Art Project, one of Tasmania’s first public commissions for ephemeral art.

The Australian Government’s Regional Arts Fund will provide more than $109,000 for regional Western Australian arts projects. The successful applicants are: Southern Edge Arts, Waringarri Aboriginal Arts, Ms Sky River, Goolarri Media Enterprises and Esperance Community Arts.

Jasmine Vink has won Australian Photography Magazine’s 2018 Photographer of the Year Award for her series of striking images of endangered amphibians.

Dexus, an Australian Real Estate Investment Trust, has announced photographer Tamara Dean as the winner of a competition to display her latest digital installation, Paralle.l, at 100 Mount Street in North Sydney.

The Australia Council for the Arts has announced its team of emerging arts professionals, exhibition team leaders and volunteers who will support Australia’s exhibition in Venice, as part of the Australia Council’s Venice Biennale Professional Development Program. Emerging Arts Professionals: Aaron Bradbrook (VIC), Amelia Winata (VIC), Anna Louise Richardson  (WA), April Phillips  (NSW), Blake Griffiths  (NSW), Carmen Ansaldo  (NT), Clare Armitage  (NT), Dan Bourke  (WA), Emma McLean  (QLD), Gina Mobayed  (NSW), Imogen Dixon-Smith  (NSW), Jing-Ling Chua  (ACT), Sarah Sansom  (TAS), Serena Wong  (SA), Vivian Cooper  (SA). Exhibition Team Leaders: Bree Richards  (NSW), Caroline Hunter  (NT), Claire Richardson  (VIC), Debbie Pryor (SA), Kate Davis  (NSW), Lara Merrington (VIC), Laura Couttie  (VIC); and Volunteer Exhibition Attendants: Amanda Saker  (NSW), Amy Perejuan-Capone (WA), Brent Harrison (WA), Courtney Wagner  (NSW), Eva Balog  (NSW), Hannah Rose Carroll Harris (NSW), Hilary Thurlow   (QLD), Jessica Row  (VIC), Jenna Pippett   (SA), Jimmy Nuttall  (VIC), Nadia Odlum  (NSW), Rebecca Vaughan  (VIC), Yvette Dal Pozzo  (ACT), Zoe Martyn (WA).

In Governments

Country Arts WA is launching The Local Leadership Program which aims to support the regional arts sector to build local teams, sharing local knowledge and driving local projects.

In Galleries

Horsham Rural City Council has appointed Brenda Wellman as the new Director of the Horsham Regional Art Gallery (HRAG) after the departure of long-term Director, Adam Harding.  

Biripi woman Nicole Chaffey has been appointed the new Art Centre Manager for Baluk Arts in Victoria. 

A scoping study will be undertaken for the National Gallery for Aboriginal Art and Cultures, to be established on the old Royal Adelaide Hospital site at Lot Fourteen.

A $2.3 million expansion of Lake Macquarie’s multi award-winning gallery is set to begin next month to enhance the already vibrant and popular cultural facility.

Baden Pailthorpe has been commissioned to create a major video work for Australia's newest private museum, Lyon Housemuseum, which will open to the public for the first time on 15 March 2019.

Multicultural Museums Victoria is thrilled has announced the appointment of John Petersen as their inaugural Executive Officer.

The Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW) has appointed Miranda Carroll, a leading art museum communications professional, to the position of Director of Public Engagement. Carroll comes to Sydney from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), where she was Senior Director of Communications for the past eight years.

In Organisations

Arts Law Centre for Australia has announced new team members. Emily Bell is a new secondee from the Australian Government Solicitor. Sharna White joined the Arts Law Centre of Australia in 2019 as the Artists in the Black Paralegal. After two years as the Artists in the Black Paralegal, Lee Elsdon has moved into a solicitor role at Arts Law. Samantha Stratton is the new Communications Coordinator, and comes to the organisation with a history working in the arts and media in regional NSW.

The Naomi Milgrom Foundation announced that Pritzker Prize-winning Australian architect Glenn Murcutt AO has been commissioned for the sixth annual MPavilion.

UQ Art Museum has launched a new program that aims to shift the way it works as an institution. Unlearning is the first in a series of multi-year research inquiries titled An Art Museum in Several Acts that will investigate and articulate the role of the Art Museum in university and artistic contexts.

In Festivals

Next Wave has welcomed Priya Pavri to the role of General Manager. With a background in Law and Arts, Pavri has led community projects in the not-for-profit and government sector in urban and remote Australia, the Middle East and Asia Pacific. Prior to joining the Next Wave team, she managed frontline emergency medical care in Iraq, worked as a consultant at Price Waterhouse Coopers and advised a Member of the Parliament in South Australia.

Alec Reade, Nikki Lam and Emily Sweeney will also join the Next Wave team as Associate Producers.

Cairns Indigenous Art Fair (CIAF) has secured 3 year funding. Queensland Government has pledged continued support via its Tourism and Events Queensland's (TEQ) Destination Events Program.  

Sydney Design Festival has announced its program. Curated and produced by the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS), this year’s festival theme Accessing Design challenges designers to broaden the definition of design and collaborate across disciplines and cultural divides.


Acclaimed Cape York artist and well-respected community elder Waal-Waal Ngallametta passed away  28 January at her home in Aurukun, Cape York. ‘Mrs Ngallametta, an elder of the Putch clan and a cultural leader of the Wik and Kugu people of Aurukun was one of the most well-regarded senior community-based artists in Queensland,’ said QAGOMA Director Chris Saines. 

Sculptor Rosemary Madigan died peacefully on 12 February at the Yass District Hospital in rural NSW, the small country town where she had lived since 2000.

Born in Adelaide in 1926, she was 93.