November 22


The QANTAS Foundation’s Encouragement of Contemporary Australian Art Award might be a mouthful but for at least 7 artists it is synonymous with VERY good news. Now in its fifth year the award recognises Aussie artists and aims to increase awareness of Australian art by encouraging promising emerging artists to keep the flag flying, as it were. Love the award nights and not just for the champers and excellent savouries ! It’s a great opportunity to meet the recipients and more importantly for them to meet each other. At Carriageworks, Sydney, last night Pat Corrigan handed out the prizes while 2008 Queensland recipient Vernon Ah Kee gave a speech. As Vernon said it is an A – ward for current effort rather than a RE – ward for hanging around too long. This award is based on a body of work rather than the usual one piece, there are no flukes involved, and everyone thoroughly deserves the $10k travel, $4k for a community project and $4k for shopping. With one award for every state and territory The QANTAS award has been particularly wonderful for the ACT, as it has for other regional centres.

Chris Carmody (ACT) and Hannah Bath

And now for the eagerly awaited announcement … Chris Carmody is the ACT recipient for 2012. Congratulations to Chris who is well known for his versatility and ideas that challenge everything we always thought we knew about art making but were afraid to ask. State pride aside, its impossible not to feel equally happy for Jess Olivieri and Hayley Forward (NSW), Min Wong (NT), Daniel McKewen (QLD), Heidi Kenyon (SA), Henri Pippin – Mish Meijers and Tricky Walsh (TAS), Susan Jacobs (VIC) and Andrew Varano (WA).

Andrew Varano (WA), David Broker, Vernon Ah Kee and Mish Meijers (TAS)

Daniel McKewen (QLD)

Henri Pipin (TAS)

Susan Jacobs (VIC) and Melissa Keys

Min Wong (NT) and Ricardo

Heidi Kenyon (SA), Kristel and Odessa

Jonathan Srikanthan and Jess Olivieri (NSW)