John Fries Award 2014 - finalists announced

The 2014 John Fries Award finalists are: Abdul Abdullah, Justin Balmain, Ella Barclay, Tim Bruniges, Julian Day, Omar Chowdhury, George Egerton-Warburton, Marc Etherington, Hamishi Farah, Heath Franco, Samuel Hodge, Anna Horne, Juz Kitson, Anna Kristensen, Bridie Lunney, Daniel McKewen, Beryline Mung, Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran, Alair Pambegan, Kate Scardifield, Marilyn Schneider, Jacqui Shelton, Jason Wing and Kentaro Yamada.

The winner of the 5th John Fries Award will be announced at 7pm, Tuesday 12 August at the Finalists Exhibition,  Galleries UNSW, COFA in Paddington, Sydney.

Sebastian Goldspink (the 2014 JFA guest curator and judge), said “The calibre of entries for this year’s award set a new standard. I was surprised, delighted and slightly overwhelmed by the prospect of whittling down the record 546 entries to a shortlist of 88, and then, with my fellow judges, to the 24 finalists. There was a genuine sense of excitement in the judging room.”

The finalists come from all over Australia and New Zealand, and their work includes painting, sculpture, installation, video and a live performance work.

“The John Fries Award always delivers something unexpected,” says Goldspink. “The artists display extraordinary imagination and take risks and I know everyone will be keenly watching and waiting for this year’s exhibition at Galleries UNSW, COFA."
"It's a fantastic celebration of the strength and diversity of Australasian emerging art!”

The prize was established by the Fries family in memory of former Viscopy director and honorary treasurer, John Fries, who made a remarkable contribution to the life and success of the organisation.

Judges for the 2014 award are: Sebastian Goldspink, Alexie Glass-Kantor, Jess Olivieri, Kath Fries and Megan Cope. 
JFA 2014 sponsors include: International Art Services, 10 group, Little Creatures Brewery and Small Acres Cyder.

Chippendale New World Art Prize, 8 - 24 May 2014

I'm one of the finalists in the 2014 Chippendale New World Art Prize, opening Thursday 8th May 6-8pm. The selected artworks all respond to the theme of Utopia, individual perceptions and interpretations of a 'New World'.

Chippendale New World Art Prize invitation

Philanthropist and Chairman of Frasers Property Australia Dr Stanley Quek will announce the winner at 7pm. Judged by Archibald Winner Del Kathryn Barton and Dean and Director of COFA Ross Harley, the prize is a three month residency grant at Joya:arte+ecologĂ­a in Spain.

The exhibition will span three locations: NG Art Gallery; L1 Central Pop Up Gallery; Carlton Street, Park Lane Pop-Up Gallery.

Chippendale New World Art Prize map of locations and artists

My entry, Whisper conjures a yearning for continuous serenity, which can sometimes be found - only momentarily - in the quiet contemplation of nature. This self-contained intimate installation features a dissected clay vessel containing video footage of water flowing slowly past a tranquil riverbank, reflecting the trees and sky above. Externally this dull brown clay object is as unremarkable as the mythical genie’s bottle, camouflaged as everyday clutter and quickly dismissed by a casual passer-by. But projected within the vessel there is a continuous moment of quiet mediative contemplation, an idyllic notion of Utopia where one is able to attain this human desire to be at one with nature. Whisper’s hand-made, hand-sized receptacle lends a personal embodied notion of physically touching and holding this particular moment of engagement with the natural world. The video’s looped repetition takes this moment out of the flux and flow of time as we usually experience it. Heraclitus, an ancient Greek philosopher, said that you can never step in the same river twice, yet thousands of years later we still continue to aspire to pause the passage of time and search for a permanent state of perfection.

Kath Fries, Whisper, 2014
you can view the video component on line

Whisper will be exhibited at Carlton Street Park Lane Pop-Up Gallery, 8 - 24 May, as part of the Chippendale New World Art Prize.