Arts / Foong’s ‘mysterious’ paintings win CAPO prize


Marilyn Gray, Gus McGrath, Patricia Piccinini and Denise Ferris.

VISUAL artist Bryan Foong was announced as winner of the CAPO Emerging Artists’ Prize by Prof Denise Ferris at Friday’s opening of the exhibition in which his works appear.

Curated by Angus McGrath, the show features work by Foong, Jeremy Brown, Dean Cross, Alex Hobba, Skye Jamieson and Nyx Mathews.

The new CAPO patron, arts celeb and former Canberran Patricia Piccinini, whose famous “Skywhale” is often seen in the news, was on hand to join in the fun.

Judges Peter Jones and Kirsten Farrell congratulated the six artists selected by McGrath on the quality of their work. They noted strong threads of conceptual inquiry, experimentation, engagement with art history and theory and the relationship of the artist to the world, expressed across a variety of media – painting, objects, assemblage and text.

“Light offer, though enthusiastic” by Bryan Foong, 2018, acrylic, pastel, pigment and polyfilla on canvas.

In selecting Foong as the winner of the prize, they commented on the role played by the textual elements of his works in exploring abiding issues arising in the creative process, such as the artist as performer; the limits of the artist’s control; the independence of the artwork from the artist; and the idea of failure.

The paintings, they said, sit beautifully as both illustrations and products of these struggles, entities in their own right, “both humble and accomplished, mysterious and available”.

 “Why?” the 2018 CAPO Emerging Artists’ Prize, Foyer Gallery, ANU School of Art and Design, July 20-31.

All artwork and an exhibition catalogue will be for sale via the ANU School of Art & Design office.



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