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Mid West Art Prize 2021

The Mid West Art Prize is a prestigious art exhibition, now in its seventh year, held biennially at the Geraldton Regional Art Gallery. The Mid West Art Prize opened at the Geraldton Regional Art Gallery on 27 November 2021. The biennial prize is open to artists residing throughout Western Australia. 

This year's selection panel consisting of the Coordinator of the Geraldton Regional Art Gallery, Marina Baker; academic and contemporary artist, Dr Nien Schwarz and CEO of WA Art Touring Company ART ON THE MOVE, Dr Theo Constantino; convened to make the final selection for 2021. 

Our Judges: 

Jane King

Gallery Manager, John Curtin Gallery 

Previously Head of Member Development at Artsource, Executive Director at the State Library of WA Foundation and Executive Officer of Museums Australia WA, Jane is currently an elected member of the National Council of Australian Museums and Galleries Association. She is also the Deputy Chair of FutureNow, the Training Council for the Creative and Recreation sectors, and Co-Chair and an Artistic Director of the North Midlands Project. Jane holds degrees in Economics and Fine Art, with numerous awards and post-graduate studies. She is also a practising artist, curator and a passionate advocate for WA cultural organisations and artists.     

Sandra Murray

Artistic Director/Lead Curator, Sculpture at Bathers 2022 Fremantle

Sandra has worked in the public, corporate, not-for-profit, and private sectors as an Independent Art Curator and consultant, curating over 65 exhibitions in WA and NSW with clients including the Royal Agricultural Society of WA and Bankwest. Sandra was also the inaugural Curator of UWA’s Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery. She has initiated many landmark exhibitions and prizes, including the Bankwest Art Prize for Sculpture and the Perth Royal Art Prize for Landscape, creating unique opportunities for WA contemporary artists. Sandra holds a BA Honours in Art History and Theory, and a Master of Philosophy.

Jánis Nedela

Curator of Paintings and Works on Paper. Australian Capital Equity (for the Kerry Stokes Collection), Co-director Gallery East Art Services

 As a practising artist and curator, Jánis has a substantial state, national and international profile in the Visual Arts. He is collected by over 20 public and private galleries, and is recipient of numerous awards, residencies and in 2005 received a Creative Fellowship from ArtsWA facilitating an artist residency in Riga, Latvia. On his return a comprehensive survey exhibition was mounted by Bunbury Regional Art Gallery covering 15 years’ work titled A Near Distance. Jánis initially studied Printmaking and Graphic Design at Perth Technical College and gained his Bachelor of Arts (Visual Arts) from Curtin University.

Our Sponsors:

Lara Dalton Bowman Bright Latitude Jewellers

Congratulations to our Winners:

City of Greater Geraldton Overall Award for Excellence (Acquisitive) ($20,000)

Artist: Mikaela Castledine

Artwork: Catch - Sculpture, timber, crochet cotton and found objects

Judges Comments: A wonderful artwork and acquisition for a coastal city like Geraldton! When you look at the artwork, every element is thoroughly thought out and beautifully crafted. The skill, technical proficiency and thoughtful combination of forms and materials are perfect. There’s beautiful movement in the subtle colours evoking the movement of water and its’ catch of fish, and there is an emotive and moving story behind it. This work is both simple and elegant, shimmering yet under-stated. The mix and range of media is apt and stunning – sculpted wood, crochet, wire work, jewellery-making – again just wonderful craftsmanship. This is a timeless piece, a deserving piece. Congratulations Mikaela!

Yamaji Art Aboriginal Arts Award ($3,500)

Artist: Pia Wadjarri Remote Community and School with Pop Len Merry, Nan Julie Ryan, Aunty Kylie Simpson, Mr B, Josh Kirkman, Maddison Schwarze, Rhianna, Denika, Matchum, Nancy, Bidi-Bidi, Kyanne, in collaboration with Nicole Monks

Artwork: ganun-ganunmanha (tread lightly) - Video

Judges Comments: Wonderful to experience this combination of performance, sound, site and movement in this beautiful video, a non-traditional medium which has perfectly and poetically combined the circular motifs and seasonal colours of the bush. Great to see the community, school and artist work together. And a strong end – we loved it!

Local Member Lara Dalton (MLA) People's Choice Award ($1,500)

GRAG MWAP21 Local Member Lara Dalton (MLA) People's Choice Award - $1,500 - Noami Grant_Manifestation

Artist: Naomi Grant

Artwork: Manifestation - Acrylic and collage

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Bowman-Bright Mid West Artist Award ($1,000)

Artist: Leah Vlatko

Artwork: Study of Banksia - Crochet wire and thread

Judges Comments: With a beautiful configuration of floating forms, the Judges were impressed by the shadow play, delicacy and intricacy of the artwork.  The artist brings the natural form of the banksia to the fore while using modern materials, in wire and thread, combined through the traditional technique of crochet.

Latitude Jewellers Youth Award ($500) 

Artist: Elliot Brown

Artwork: Glimpse - Video

Judges Comments: The Judges found Elliot’s video ‘Glimpse’ captivating, emotive, powerful and intense. It is poignant and moving, all within such a short time frame. It is beautifully framed and shot, with the B&W and changing format showing the movement of time in unexpected ways. This is a work that very much responds to the concerns and energies of the present times. Well done Elliot!

Latitude Jewellers Youth Award (Highly Commended) 

Artist: Kayla McMillan

Artwork: Chaotic Harmony - Sakura Micron Pigma Ink Pen's

Judges Comments: The Judges also wanted to Highly Recommend the work of Kayla McMillan titled “Chaotic Harmony”. It is intricate, well-executed, with a lovely range of techniques and textures, a cornucopia of seafood! Very well done!