Art prize winner ‘rattles’ the judges

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Cat Mueller Rattled M16 Drawing Prize
Cat Mueller’s “Rattled”.
The 2014 winners of the M16 Artspace Drawing Prize have been announced and the popular arts organisation is congratulating itself that the prize and the accompanying exhibition push the bounds of “what is drawing”.

First prize Cat Mueller won $1000 cash donated by CAPO and a special accommodation package at the Hyatt for her work “Rattled,” described by judges Marie Hagerty and Mark Bayly as “energetic”.

Bayly has said of Mueller’s work, “’Rattled’ is bold and exuberant and I personally really enjoyed the artist’s use of markers – at once juvenile but actually a medium which requires an unerring sense of application. Mueller’s work suggests at once the joyfulness of children’s sweets and the glitz of Christmas gift-wrap and the expectant, anarchic act of unwrapping. The work also possesses the strange and unsettling quality of sub-molecular particles under microscopic investigation.”

Nicci Haynes, ‘Speech Acts, Ink’, screen print on book pages
Nicci Haynes, ‘Speech Acts, Ink’
Second prize of $500 in framing donated by The Framing Store, Braddon, went to Nicci Haynes, for  ‘Speech Acts, Ink’, screen print on book pages, who says of her work, “I have been thinking a lot about the methods we (humans) use to convert the stuff in our heads into ‘communication’. I think about writing, and I think about speaking and I think about gesture. I think about body language. And I think about thinking.”

The judges said they were looking for a sense of immediacy and agency in a winner, while also being conscious of how specific works existed within the context of individual artists’ practices.

The prize has been running since 2006 and this year the judges has 130 entries to select from. The exhibition of finalists features 78 works from local and interstate artists and includes, digital, pencil, paint, print and sculpture.

Of particular note is Hannah Quinlivan’s wall sculpture, “Connective tissue,” ‘wirey’ connecting lines sparked some discussion about the definition of drawing.

M16 Artspace Drawing Prize, at M16 Artspace, Blaxland Crescent Griffith, 12 – 5pm, op0en Wednesday – Sunday and by appointment until 5pm. December 19. M16 will reopen on January 22 with a new program.

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Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

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