2019 is the ninth year of the Annual Outback Archies art prize with celebrates the colour, creativity and spirit of our communities across the Far West. There are total of 63 artworks included in the exhibition across the categories of Two-dimensional, Photography, Ceramics, and Sculpture. The standard of entries was very high and made the decision making very tough for the judges. The judging panel included, Lisa Wheeler, 2018 Outback Archies Winner, Emily Rolfe, Curator of Contemporary Visual Art at Campbelltown Arts Centre and Kent Buchanan, Exhibition Curator at Western Plains Cultural Centre.
Thanks to support from sponsors; Swanny’s Foods and Northwest Vets there were a number of excellent cash prizes up for grabs. There was also media support from Coonamble Times Newspaper and exhibition opportunities on offer by Corner Store Gallery Orange and Campbelltown Arts Centre.
The Sculpture 2nd prize went to “the people’s favourite” Brian Campbell of Coonamble for his Warm Hands Wizza, as well as the Peoples Choice Award. The winner of the category was Alison Dent of Gulargambone for The Outback: The Beating of our Hearts. Gemma Pettiford of Coonamble took out first place prize in Ceramics for Landscape of our Land, and Melissa Kelly of Gilgandra scored the runner up prize for her work Mother. In the Photography category 2nd place went to Belinda Dimarzio-Bryan of Warren for Fog Rising at Tiger Bay and 1st place went to Mardi Remond of Walgett for her portrait of Dave. The Two-Dimensional prize for paintings, drawings and print-making 2nd place went to Harriet Waters of Nyngan for If Tears Could Make It Rain, and 1st place went to Jude Fleming of Warren for Golden Gully. The Curator’s Concept Awards went to Melissa Murray of Coonamble for Outback Urban Landscape in the photography category and Karen Flakelar of Coonamble for her Wet Dreaming sculpture. The Packing Room Prize was awarded to Chris Kunko of Gilgandra for Trotting Over Kangaroo Ribs.
The overall winner of the 2019 Archies Awards was Sooty Welsh of Coonamble with his ceramic artwork series Ancestral Trees.