A broader brief has transformed the Waterhouse Natural Science Prize, allowing artists to add a human dimension to their perspectives on natural science and our shared planet
Penneshaw painter Scott Hartshorne’s Ocean Tidings depicts Gooseneck Barnacles, found growing on a bottle washed up on Kangaroo Island’s wild south coast.
“Ocean-born jetsam is an ever-increasing phenomenon on these remote beaches,” Hartshorne says. “The pelagic barnacles are wonderfully opportunistic, but the message is the bottle: a reminder that we too live on a finite pale blue dot floating in space.” Not all of the work is figurative or literal. “My work is about pushing inventiveness to the limit with abstract forms and shapes through a sensual use of symmetry, space and colour,” says Stuttgart-born Sydney artist Conchita Carambano of her mixed media work, Separate Obligations. “It incorporates the colours of Australian scenes that are offered nowhere else in the world.”
At the other extreme, Littlehampton artist Jerome Kalvas’ Saltwater watercolour is a very up-close and personal – and detailed.
“Few creatures get to observe a wild estuarine crocodile so intimately and live to tell the tale,” Kalvas says. “As a selftaught artist and wildlife veterinarian with an abiding fascination with the forms and functions observed throughout nature, I was intrigued in getting up close to a creature