Cossack Art Awards on again
The Cossack Art Awards are less than one month away now and anticipation is building around what people can expect from the exhibition and its program of events.
Each year the prestigious exhibition with 11 prize categories and a total prize pool of more than $100,000 draws huge local and national attention to the historic Pilbara ghost town.
This year, the exhibition quota of 300 entries was filled by mid-May, only two months after it opened, and there has been strong local representation, with more than 40 per cent of entries coming from the Pilbara. Yinja-Barni Art Centre in Roebourne boasts a long list of past Cossack winners, including 2015 Best Overall Artwork winner Wendy Darby, and has about 18 entrants this year.
Centre manager Patricia Floyd said every year Cossack was a major event and source of pride for artists with the group.
“It’s special for them because it’s somewhere locally that their art can be shown and displayed,” she said.
Dampier Art Studio chairwoman Tanya Montgomery said their group’s submissions covered a wide range of genres this year.
She ran a first-time Prepare for Cossack workshop in May and said it had attracted a lot of interest from aspiring but “time-poor” artists in Karratha, Dampier and Wickham.
“I think what we’ll see from the art awards this year is probably a greater depth in the works,” she said.
This year, the People’s Choice Award has gained a sponsor for the first time — Horizon Power, and the prize money will go up to $3000. A packed program of workshops will run alongside the main exhibition to give those attending the chance to get creative.
Indigenous tour operator Clinton Walker will also run two rock art tours of the surrounding area and local artists will give presentations every Sunday morning of the exhibition.
Ms Montgomery said the extra events were designed to involve artists of all levels and it was “always exciting to see artists come out of the woodwork for our public program”.
Cossack Art Awards winners will be announced at the opening night on Saturday, July 23.
The exhibition will run from July 24 to August 14.
For more information, go to cossackartawards.com.au or “like” the Cossack Art Awards Facebook page.
Katy Eccles, Consuelo Cavaniglia, Samantha Stewart, Georgia Stewart and Toni Salmon set up for a past Cossack Art Awards display.